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Old 04-10-2012, 10:57 AM
Location: Arkansas
18 posts, read 70,885 times
Reputation: 22


Was asked to move this from the "Arkansas" forum to this one...

After we moved to Mountain Home from Minnesota, we decided we really could use some Creeping Charlie (glechoma hederacae?) to fill in lots and lots of bare spots. We got some from a friend in Minnesota amidst much protest from another friend who hated to see us relocate such an invasive wonder. He'll be happy to know that, at least in our experience, Creeping Charlie barely creeps at all here. We actually wish it was more energetic, especially since our "Charlie" zones seem to be chigger free.

I looked up Creeping Charlie and found it listed (at least on one side) as an indigenous plant for Arkansas and it wasn't listed as invasive. Makes sense 'cause unless we water the beejebers out of it, summer heat and sandy clay soil that mimics concrete slow it way down or pretty much kill it off entirely. C'est domage! We just broadcast clover everywhere bare this year since it's suppose to "improve" the soil.

Finding morning glories on a list of invasive plants was really a surprise. We've found blackberry vines formidable foes. Who would have thought those vines could make blue jeans look like swiss cheese? But, we've also found that those vines, silk trees, and sumac don't survive burning off the annual black oak leaf dump.

Thought I'd get some feedback on what plants make people smile and which ones are really a bad idea in the various regions of Arkansas. Would love to hear that there is at least one plant that isn't a happy habitat for snakes.

(I can attest to rocks being prolific perennials. Plenty of chert, limestone, rosebud quartz, and rocks with veins of itty bitty quartz crystals, fossil casts and molds, etc. etc. etc.)
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:22 PM
2,063 posts, read 6,705,273 times
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I'm in a neighboring state and probably share some plants that thrive, but things might be different enough to not be what you need. To really get some local information you may want to go to local experts like the Master Gardeners. They would be great for some suggestions if you want successful plants. It may not be too late to catch a plant sale in your area that is sponsored by them. It's an ideal way to get some inexpensive "pass-a-longs" and some tips on growing in your soil and climate.

Master Gardener Plant Sales
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Old 04-11-2012, 02:30 AM
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 16,645,382 times
Reputation: 7618
Poison ivy. Doesn't make me smile, but the snakes love it and you can't kill it.

I love Cherokee roses and there's a ton of them growing wild in Arkansas, but they are listed as invasive. I can attest to the fact they are impossible to kill by uprooting them, forgetting to replant, throwing a dead-looking bush into the ground, and 18 months later having a bush 4 feet wide and high. And they don't care if there's sun, their feet are wet, or if they are in the middle of a hayfield. They just grow. Properly trained and pruned religiously and cared for, though, they are quite lovely.

Hosta, azalea, dogwood, rhododenron, coneflower, hot lips sage, shasta daisies, ferns of all sorts, redbud trees, Carolina jasmine, trumpet and honeysuckle vine, hydrangea, vinca major and minor, begonia, all kinds of roses - these will grow well.

Anything that vines heavily is suspect for snakes - I think in your area (as mine) the biggest offenders are copperheads. Learn to identify them and make a ton of noise and give them time to leave before you start rooting around in dead leaves or vines or where there are a lot of rocks to hide under. They are slow or lazy and rather stupid; you can be right up on one before it will move or even react. And they are poisonous.

As far as creeping Charlie, I thought it was a weed - I looked it up - I think I've thrown out or dug up a dump truck load this year already....as well as clover....are you specifically looking for ground cover, and what type of area is it you are trying to improve? Back yard right near the house, fence line, etc.? Sunny or shady?

Generally, most things will grow if you are energetic enough to remove a bunch of your rocky soil and give a plant something to cling to in the early days.

Carl Hunter wrote a book that you might find extremely helpful:

Wildflowers of Arkansas - Carl G. Hunter - Google Books

I also i.d. a lot of things from this collection of pictures:

Index Of Arkansas Native Wildflowers Photo Gallery by Craig Fraiser at pbase.com
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