Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

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

Monday - November 07, 2011

From: Leander, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Groundcovers, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Native, full-sun, 4-in. evergreen grasses for Leander TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Help! I need a native Texas evergreen sedge/grass/ground cover for full-sun/hot/dry area between sidewalk and street. The plants will need to be kept about 4" high, if growth is higher it must be mowed. Soil can be amended to meet plant needs. I searched the Q & A and plant description pages and did not find a plant that would live in the specified conditions.

ANSWER:

Gee, who doesn't? We can help you with several of your requirements, but not all of them. Allow us to introduce you to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center's research on grasses well suited to drought, heat and sun. What we cannot do is offer you anything evergreen. Some of these grasses even go dormant and turn brown when it is very dry, but will persevere. Please read these articles about the grasses that have been developed:

How-To Article - Native Lawns: Buffalograss

How-To Article - Native Lawns: Multi-Species introducing Habiturf

Native Lawns - including comparisons on weed resistance

 

 

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Buffalograss
Bouteloua dactyloides

More Groundcovers Questions

Low native groundcover for Wicksburg/Newton AL
July 29, 2009 - I am laying a rather wide-set flagstone pathway in our back weeds (planning some native grass and wildflowers in the fall on either side of the path). I am looking for some very low native groundcover...
view the full question and answer

Replacing St. Augustine with Horse herb in Austin, TX.
December 12, 2012 - I'm considering replacing my St. Augustine grass with a Horseherb/Straggler Daisy ground cover, but I've heard that it provides a mosquito breeding habitat, especially if you allow dead leaves to de...
view the full question and answer

Where to find Horseherb seed
August 02, 2015 - I would like to purchase some Horseherb seeds. Can you tell me where I can do that? Either locally or on line. Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Plantings for a slope from New Carrollton MD
June 27, 2012 - My house (Maryland, near DC) sits at the bottom of a south facing slope. The soil is very heavy clay. The grade is about 1:20 for about 100 feet (with a steeper part at the top). Part of the hill is i...
view the full question and answer

Alternative to grass as groundcover in area used by dog
January 05, 2007 - I am looking for a beautiful groundcover to use instead of grass which need to be soft and animal friendly. My dog is in the yard a lot and she's 10 yrs old. I am looking for a groundcover which wi...
view the full question and answer

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