10 Hurricane-Resistant Landscaping Ideas for Corpus Christi, TX

Southeast Texas town, Corpus Christi, and its seven barrier islands are well-versed in hurricane preparedness. Historically, Texans can expect a tropical cyclone to make landfall along a 50-mile segment of its coast once every six years. While these odds may sound good, the only state that has experienced more hurricanes in its history is Florida. 

Like residents of the Sunshine State, Southeast Texans know it pays to be prepared, especially with homes and yards. Here are some hurricane-resistant landscaping ideas to help you prepare your landscape for the Texas hurricane season. 

In this article, we’ll cover:

10 Hurricane-Resistant Landscaping Ideas for Corpus Christi

  1. Plant Wind-Resistant Trees
  2. Create a Network of Trees
  3. Use Native Plants
  4. Add Hurricane-Resistant Hardscaping
  5. Perform Landscape Maintenance
  6. Soft Mulch Your Flower Beds
  7. Eliminate Hazards
  8. Install Hurricane-Resistant Fencing
  9. Build a Seawall
  10. Clear Drains

FAQ About Hurricane-Resistant Corpus Christi Landscaping

10 Hurricane-Resistant Landscaping Ideas for Corpus Christi

1. Plant Wind-Resistant Trees

large mature trees lining a walking path

Photo Credit: denisbin / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

The recognized hurricane wind scale has five categories, ranging from Category 1 “some damage” up to Category 5 “catastrophic.” All it takes is sustained winds of 90 mph or more to uproot large trees, and even Category 1 hurricanes sustain winds between 74 to 95 mph. With 21% of all U.S. hurricanes making landfall in Texas, it is important to plant wind-resistant trees to protect your home and neighborhood from flying branches and falling trees. 

According to Texas A&M, wind-resistant Corpus Christi tree species include:

  • Cedar Elm (Ulmus crassifolia)
  • Colorado Blue Spruce (Picea pungens)
  • Juniper (Juniperus)
  • Mexican Pinyon (Pinus cembroides)
  • Redbud (Cercis)
  • Soaptree Yucca (Yucca elata)
  • Texas Red Oak (Quercus buckleyi)

Trees to avoid:

  • Eastern Cottonwood (Populus deltoides)
  • Mimosa (Albizia julibrissin)
  • Siberian Elm (Ulmus pumila)
  • Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum)
  • Willow (Salix)

Advantages of wind-resistant trees:

  • Thin leaves and slender branches deflect wind
  • Flexible branches bend instead of snap
  • Broad and deep root systems reduce the risk of uprooting
  • Low centers of gravity create stability

Estimated cost: The average cost of a hurricane-resistant tree varies depending on the size and type of tree, purchase location, and whether you are having a professional handle your landscaping. If you head to your local nursery to purchase your tree, you can expect to spend between $200 to $1,500 per tree. 

2. Create a Network of Trees

Like most Corpus Christi residents, you have a storm preparedness checklist ready for hurricane season, but no matter how much you plan, you know there is no way to protect your home and yard from storm damage completely. Selecting wind-resistant trees and thoroughly planning your hurricane-resistant landscape increases your plants’ survival chances during a storm. 

Some things to consider as you plan your hurricane-resistant landscape include: 

  • Salt spray proximity
  • Ocean and flood tolerance 
  • Mature size to avoid conflicts with fences, buildings, power lines, and other plants
  • Removing problematic plants or trees 
  • Grouping trees and plants at even intervals to form a stabilizing root network

3. Use Native Plants 

Native South Texas plants are the most salt and wind-tolerant plants you can include in your landscaping project, and they have the added benefits of being incredibly low-maintenance and drought-tolerant plants. Native plants promote a healthy ecosystem and thrive in Corpus Christi’s subtropical climate. These plants are hands-off and resistant to local insects and diseases. 

There are many Texas native plants and groundcovers to choose from. Take a look at some of the most salt-tolerant types: 

  • Beach Morningglory (Ipomoea imperati)
  • Coralbean (Erythrina herbacea)
  • Salt-marsh Morningglory (Ipomoea sagittata)
  • Sea Oats (Uniola paniculata)
  • Sea Ox-ete (Borrichia frutescens)
  • Sea Purslane (Sesuvium portulacastrum)

Advantages of native plants:

  • Thrive in Corpus Christi’s subtropical climate
  • Drought-tolerant; require less water and fertilizer
  • Support a diverse ecosystem, providing food and shelter for local wildlife, hummingbirds, butterflies, and other pollinators
  • Disease and pest-resistant
  • Heat, wind, and salt-tolerant

Estimated cost: Native plant prices vary widely based on many factors, including type, size, and location. On average, you can expect to spend between $15 to $50 per shrub, $5 to $50 per vine, and $200 to $1,500 per tree.

4. Add Hurricane-Resistant Hardscaping

image of garden pathway

Photo Credit: PublicDomainPictures

Weekly lawn maintenance is daunting, and Texas summers are hot. The fewer plants in your backyard landscape, the less time you will spend maintaining your lawn and garden. While some hardscaping ideas like loose rocks are best left to the inland cities of Central Texas like Austin and San Antonio, there are still many hurricane-safe hardscaping options to add sustainable visual interest to your landscape while eliminating weekly maintenance.

Hurricane-safe hardscape options include: 

  • Decks
  • Concrete Patios
  • Garden paths and pavers
  • Firepits

Advantages of hardscapes:

  • Only require annual cleaning
  • Increase property value 
  • Add entertaining and outdoor living space
  • Water-efficient
  • Reduce soil erosion
  • Boost curb appeal

Estimated cost: Be prepared to spend around $7,500 for a new deck, $4,000 for a patio, and $3,000 for a flagstone walkway. 

5. Perform Landscape Maintenance

Routine maintenance, including pruning and trimming, helps maintain healthy trees, and healthy trees are sturdy trees. Be sure to keep your hedges, shrubs, and trees pruned or trimmed to cut down on the number and size of branches flying across your yard during a tropical storm. 

Advantages of landscape maintenance:

  • Increases the health of your landscape
  • Encourages strong and healthy root systems
  • Reduces the risk of loose branches and tree limbs

Estimated cost: Professional tree trimming and landscape maintenance costs between $315 to $700, depending on the size of your yard and the number of trees and shrubs. 

6. Soft Mulch Your Flower Beds

image of a yard after mulching

Photo Credit: christina rutz / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Mulch comes in many forms and colors. It is a type of xeriscaping, a practice focused on low-maintenance landscaping and water conservation. Mulching is an inexpensive DIY job with enormous benefits for your Corpus Christi lawn. It is a loose material typically made of organic matter like compost, tree bark, and wood chips that helps reduce weeds, conserve moisture, and protect your plants’ roots from the summer heat.

Organic mulch is the best option for your South Texas landscape. It adds beneficial nutrients to the soil as it decomposes, but you will need to add a fresh layer annually. Inorganic mulches like gravel, river rock, and landscape glass are low-maintenance and durable, but the hard pieces ricochet off windows and siding during a hurricane. 

Best mulch for your Corpus Christi landscape: 

  • Hardwood and softwood chips
  • Bark
  • Pine needles
  • Leaves
  • Grass clippings

Mulch to avoid:

  • Rock, stone, lava rock
  • Rubber mulch
  • Landscape glass

Advantages of mulch:

  • Increases moisture retention
  • Reduces weeds
  • Protects plant roots from extreme heat
  • Adds curb appeal

Estimated cost: According to Lowes and Home Depot, wood mulch costs between $3 to $5 per 2-cubic-foot bag. If your landscaping project requires a lot of mulch, you can often purchase it in bulk to save money. 

7. Eliminate Hazards

Statues, flower containers, bird baths, small fountains, and patio furniture are all great additions that add a personal touch to your South Texas oasis. Unfortunately, these objects are no match for hurricane-force winds. Be sure to remove all movable storm hazards to minimize damage.  

Estimated cost: There is no cost to move your landscaping decorations or furniture indoors. However, if you are short on space and want to maximize your storm preparedness, you can rent a storage unit for around $125 per month. 

8. Install Hurricane-Resistant Fencing

Like trees, some fences cannot stand up to strong winds. Fortunately, many Gulf Coast fence contractors specialize in hurricane-resistant fencing and reinforcement. Be sure to note that wood fences are not the best choice for wind-resistant fencing. However, if the sustainability and natural beauty of wood are something you cannot live without, be sure to choose a slatted fence design to minimize wind resistance.  

Take a look at some of the most wind-resistant fence types:

  • Chain-link
  • Aluminum
  • Vinyl
  • Masonry

Fence types to avoid:

  • Wood
  • Any type of solid privacy fence

Estimated cost: Professional fence installation costs between $1,330 to $5,550, depending on size, materials, and location. 

9. Build a Seawall

The average elevation of Corpus Christi is only 25 feet above sea level, and thanks to the city’s subtropical climate and seven barrier islands, waterfront homes are popular in the luxury real estate market. When planning your hurricane-resistant landscape, consider your proximity to the water. Building a seawall around your property protects your home and landscape from tumultuous surf, flooding, and erosion.    

Check out these popular hurricane-resistant seawall materials:

  • Marine-grade concrete
  • Composite
  • Vinyl
  • Riprap (rocks)

Materials to avoid:

  • Wood
  • Metal

Advantages of a seawall:

  • Prevents erosion
  • Minimizes flooding
  • Durable
  • Cost-effective

Estimated cost: On average, a new seawall costs $25,000 for professional installation. 

10. Clear Drains

close-up of a storm drain with leaves covering a corner of it

Photo Credit: Dan Keck / Flickr / Public Domain

Every year Corpus Christi has a 74% chance of experiencing a flood, which is the equivalent of one flood every 16 months. Storm drains are an integral part of the city’s infrastructure and your overall landscape. 

Unfortunately, many homeowners often overlook these necessities because they offer little aesthetic value. Yard waste and organic debris can clog your drains, leading to increased flooding and water damage. Be sure to keep paths to your drains clear by maintaining your landscape. 

Advantages of proper drainage:

  • Prevents water buildup
  • Reduces erosion
  • Reduces toxic runoff

Estimated cost: Professional French drain installation costs between $1,650 to $12,250, depending on location, size, and excavation needs.

FAQ About Hurricane-Resistant Corpus Christi Landscaping

What is the best hurricane-resistant grass?

The best hurricane-resistant grasses for your Corpus Christi landscape are St. Augustinegrass, Zoysiagrass, and seashore paspalum. These grass types tolerate saltwater spray and are great warm-season grasses. Both Zoysiagrass and seashore paspalum stand up better to heavy traffic. 

Is artificial grass hurricane-resistant?

Yes. Most artificial grass is wind-resistant and can withstand up to 50 inches of rain per hour. Most hurricanes generate precipitation at a rate of 6 inches per hour. 

What time of year do hurricanes hit?

In Texas, hurricane season falls between June 1 and Nov. 30, with peak occurrences from August through September.

Professional Corpus Christi Landscape Maintenance

Check hurricane-resistant landscaping off your preparedness list and start focusing on other preparation areas. Consider letting Wikilawn connect you with a local landscaping company that can handle your lawn care needs so you can focus on other areas of your landscape design.

Main Image Credit: Robloxsupersuperhappyface / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

About Wikilawn

Wikilawn’s mission is to provide the best resources and information to help you enjoy your outdoor spaces the way you want. Whether you are a DIY, lawn-loving, gardening guru, or someone who wants help in picking a local lawn care professional, we can smooth your path to a beautiful backyard!

About Wikilawn

Wikilawn’s mission is to provide the best resources and information to help you enjoy your outdoor spaces the way you want. Whether you are a DIY, lawn-loving, gardening guru, or someone who wants help in picking a local lawn care professional, we can smooth your path to a beautiful backyard!