Sunday, May 2, 2010

Alley Plants

The small space that runs between my back fence and the alley is an experimental zone. I have tried several different plants in my attempts to fill the space with low maintenance and colorful plants that will not grow into the alley.

Salvia greggii, Texas lantana and zexmenia perform well, but the space is too narrow for the shrubby perennials. The daylilies look alright at this time of year if the aphids do not attack, but they would prefer a little more water and look pretty bad by the middle of summer.

Last year, I transplanted a few four nerve daisy, Hymenoxys scaposa, seedlings by the alley. It was in the heat of the summer, so they had a tough time getting established. They grew a little and bloomed some through the rest of the summer. They must have been growing more below the ground than above. When the cooler weather and rains of fall came, they were popping up all over the area where I planted the seedlings. The plants bloomed a little through the snow over the winter. Now, the plants are covered with flowers. The flowers really stand out in the alley. I think I found the perfect alley plant.

I use four nerve daisies in several areas of my landscape. I hope I never get tired of this little plant. They are practically perfect in every way.

My neighbors across the alley have yellow flowers growing along their side of the alley. They prefer dandelions.


  1. Glad you posted four nerve daisy. I've been looking for something like this to fill a tough spot.

    Are dandelions native? The family at my CSA pickup site eats the dandys in their back yard...

  2. Nope, I'm afraid dandelions aren't native, Kathleen. (But I conseder them to be a step up from lawn grass!)

    Your flowers are lovely Bluestem! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Four nerve daisies are my new fav flowering plant too! I love them. I just put them in along the last 15 of parkway I dug up with mexican feather grass and a couple of agaves. -Curtis

  4. According to, there are some native dandelions. They all look about the same to me, so I don’t think I would try to grow them in my garden. Besides, my neighbors think I have a yard full of weeds as it is. The truth is, my yard has fewer weeds (unwanted plants) than theirs and it is chemical free, supports wildlife, and uses much less water.

  5. Hi, I'm out blog hopping, searching for gardening blogs in my zone and found you (via Getting Grounded). Love your prairie gardens! That four nerve daisy sounds like it might make a good addition to my gardens. I'm going to snoop around a bit more and read some of your older posts.


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