Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - May 07, 2010

From: Ponder, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Erosion Control
Title: Plants to stem bank erosion in Ponder, Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We have a pond with a bridge over the middle in full sun with a steep bank on one side. The bank is difficult to maintain and we need some natural looking low maintenance plants or ground cover to plant in that area. Any advice?

ANSWER:

You can visit the Texas—North Central Recommended page to find a list of plants native to the area that are commercially available for landscaping.  Grasses with their extensive fibrous root systems are especially effective in preventing erosion.  Here are few listed on that page that do well in full sun in a streambank location:

Andropogon gerardii (big bluestem)

Muhlenbergia lindheimeri (Lindheimer's muhly)

Muhlenbergia reverchonii (seep muhly)

Poa arachnifera (Texas bluegrass)

Tripsacum dactyloides (eastern gamagrass)

Sorghastrum nutans (Indiangrass)

Here are some other plants that frequent streamsides:

Cephalanthus occidentalis (common buttonbush)

Conoclinium coelestinum (blue mistflower)

Hibiscus laevis (halberdleaf rosemallow)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower)

Here are photos from our Image Gallery:


Andropogon gerardii

Muhlenbergia lindheimeri

Muhlenbergia reverchonii

Panicum virgatum

Poa arachnifera

Sorghastrum nutans

Tripsacum dactyloides

Cephalanthus occidentalis

Conoclinium coelestinum

Hibiscus laevis

Lobelia cardinalis

 

 

 

More Erosion Control Questions

Stabilizing a shale slope in Virginia
April 08, 2009 - I have family members who recently built a new home in Virginia. The site required extensive excavation resulting in a large 30 foot, nearly vertical, shale wall behind the house. They now want to r...
view the full question and answer

Raised beds over lateral lines in Solgohachia AR
January 02, 2010 - I would like to build raised flower beds over my lateral lines. They would be planted with strawberries and perennials. Will this cause any problems with the absorption into the ground or not lettin...
view the full question and answer

Erosion Control for Salem IN
September 02, 2014 - We've recently had a new pond dug. It is on a hill side and has some very steep and tall banks. We were advised that our best chance of keeping soil from eroding was to plant fescue. I'm not thrille...
view the full question and answer

Ground cover for a bank in PA
April 28, 2012 - I live in Landisburg, PA, (zone 6). I need to find some ground cover for a primarily full sun bank that is roughly 10-12' down over the embankment and up to 100' long. This area wraps around our po...
view the full question and answer

Native plants to stabilize a steep bank in Pennsylvania
April 23, 2008 - I would like to use native plantings to stabilize a steep bank of a septic leach field in eastern Pennsylvania. My purpose is to control erosion and to eliminate the need for mowing. What would you r...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.