En Español

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 - October 15, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Transplants, Trees
Title: Newly planted anacacho leaf browning
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have just put my anacacho orchid into the ground and its leaves are turning brown and falling off. Is that normal for this time of year, or have I shocked it? What can I do to ensure its health?

ANSWER:

Bauhinia lunarioides (Texasplume) is native in canyons and arroyos in limestone hills in Kinney, Presidio and Gillespie or Llano counties, which means it's pretty much a desert dweller and needs well drained sand loam limestone. However, it should be all right in Austin, particularly if it is given some afternoon shade and moderate moisture. The problem here, though, may be transplant shock. After an often cool, wet summer, we are now making up for it with July weather in October. Ordinarily, woody plants like this are better planted after the weather has cooled more, perhaps in November. Texas natives are pretty tough; otherwise, they'd never have survived this long. Make sure it has some shelter from afternoon sun, and adequate moisture. On a newly planted specimen, sticking the hose down into the soil around the roots and dribbling a slow stream of water into it for an hour or so a few days a week should help. When a plant starts dropping leaves, it is often a sign of stress, but in this case, it could also be a sign of season. The anacacho orchid is deciduous, and may have decided to go ahead and start losing some leaves. With some extra attention, hopefully it will leaf out and be fine when spring comes.

 


Bauhinia lunarioides

 

 

More Trees Questions

Small Tree for Texas Garden
November 06, 2014 - I would like to plant a small tree just 3-4 feet from my house, but I don't want to damage the foundation. Is there a small fruit or nut tree I could plant that would fit the bill? Failing that, is t...
view the full question and answer

Can a mustang grape and an oak coexist in Austin
November 04, 2009 - I have a healthy mustang grape vine growing on an oak in my yard. While the vine provides plenty of good food and a pleasant environment for many birds throughout the year, I feel it is overtaking the...
view the full question and answer

Flower color under large pine tree from South Elgin IL
April 05, 2013 - I have a very large pine tree that I would like to plant some flowers under. I have hostas, stonecrop and fern, but like to add some color. What do you suggest? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Deciduous tree with tap root
August 04, 2008 - I have a 13 foot space between two town houses and would like to plant a slender deciduous tree up to 30 feet in height with a tendency to tap root so as not to disturb the foundation of the houses. ...
view the full question and answer

Huisaches in pots from Houston TX
May 20, 2012 - I have special (and probably weird) affinity to huisaches (acacia farnesiana). As a child I used to admire the three that elegantly guarded our backyard looking almost like fingers reaching for the s...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center