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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.

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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.

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Saturday - September 04, 2010

From: Santa Ana, CA
Region: California
Topic: Privacy Screening, Shrubs
Title: Hedge to cover chain link fence
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hi, I would like to hide 250 feet of 6' tall chain link fence on a western facing, sloped, very rocky soiled back yard I had to use a jack hammer to dig the holes. Esthetically I would like to be able to trim the hedge very straight to match my very contemporary style home. Irrigation is not a problem. Thank you.

ANSWER:

Well, I hope you have a least a little bit of soil on top of the rock or you are going to have a bit of a problem getting anything to grow there.  Here are some possibilities—all are evergreen and all native to Orange County:

Arctostaphylos densiflora (Vine Hill manzanita) and here are photos and more information.

Cercocarpus montanus var. glaber [syn. Cercocarpus betuloides] (birchleaf mountain mahogany) and here is more information.

Ceanothus leucodermis (chaparral whitethorn) and here is more information.

Ceanothus tomentosus var. olivaceous (woolyleaf ceanothus) and here is more information.

Heteromeles arbutifolia (toyon) and here is more information.

Lycium californicum (California boxthorn) and here is more information.

Malacothamnus fasciculatus (Mendocino bushmallow) and here is more information and photos.

Malosma laurina (laurel sumac) and here is more information.

Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) and here is more information.

 

From the Image Gallery


Smooth mountain mahogany
Cercocarpus montanus var. glaber

Chaparral whitethorn
Ceanothus leucodermis

Toyon
Heteromeles arbutifolia

Jojoba
Simmondsia chinensis

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