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

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Monday - June 06, 2011

From: Elgin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Erosion Control
Title: Preventing Soil Erosion in Elgin, Texas
Answered by: Mike Tomme

QUESTION:

I live in Elgin,TX and our property is basically a slope with dense oak and cedar trees on the back of the property. The soil is sandy loam. What type of native plants or grasses can I plant to stop soil erosion. The plants or grasses will have dappled to dense shade. Thanks

ANSWER:

Rather than start from scratch, Mr. Smarty Plants is going to refer you to a couple of previously answered questions about situations similar to yours. These two answers will give you a good education in growing native grasses in the shade.

First question

Second question

Almost anything you plant will help prevent soil erosion, so your main criteria for selecting native plants should be shade and sandy soil conditions. Here's how the native plant database can help:

Go to Wildflower.org, then click on explore plants and plant database. Click on the central Texas region of the map. This will produce a list of plants recommended for the region. Narrow your results by selecting shade under Light Requirements and the growth habit of the plant (herb, shrub, tree, etc.) you would prefer under General Appearance. You can further limit your search by selecting your favorite bloom color and the time of year the blooms appear.

Here are a few central Texas favorites that would do well in your situation:


Salvia coccinea


Coreopsis lanceolata


Malvaviscus arboreus

 

 

 

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