En EspaŅol

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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - December 16, 2007

From: Rockledge, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Cacti and Succulents
Title: Dying cactus plants
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Two large cactus plants on the grounds of our condominium complex have begun to turn yellow and appear to be dying. A "staple" of our landscaping, this is the first year that they have developed this appearance. Over ten years old, they are between four and six feet tall, and we'd hate to lose them. Is this just a natural part of their aging process or, if they are dying, what do we need to do to save them?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants is going to need some more information before he can really help you.  There are lots of different kinds of cactus and some people call plants that aren't really in the Family Cactaceae (Cactus Family), such as some of the yuccas and agave plants, cactus also.  So, if you happen know its botanical name, or even its common name, that would be helpful.  Better yet, if you could send us a picture we could get a better idea of what might be going on with your cactus.  To send us a photo, please visit the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants page and read the instructions under "Plant Identification" in the lower right corner.
 

More Cacti and Succulents Questions

Boundary plants to control cats
June 06, 2006 - Is there a plant especially ANNOYING to cats that I could plant along my fence line to keep him away from the street beyond? It would have to be hardy enough for hot temps & full sun. Thanks!
view the full question and answer

Skin Reaction form Cochineal on Prickly Pear
February 16, 2015 - I have severe burning and peeling skin on pads of fingers after touching "white stuff" on a prickly pear. White stuff tuned purple then burned skin even after washing hands. Skin has been cracking a...
view the full question and answer

Growing Variegated Century Plants in Portugal
February 09, 2011 - Hello Mr. Smarty Plants, I am contacting you from Portugal, because of century plant(Agave americana). I had one of that plants and I collected the seeds, which I planted, but I am quite disappointed ...
view the full question and answer

Removing grassy weeds from cactus garden in Corpus Christi TX
May 07, 2013 - How do you get grassy weeds out of a cactus garden? I don't want to use roundup around the cacti? Can you recommend a herbicide that won't harm the cactus?
view the full question and answer

Overwintering Yucca Seedlings in Illinois
October 02, 2013 - I have many yucca seedlings I started this year. My question is what do I need to do with them to overwinter here in Northern Illinois and when do I plant them in the ground for best chances of survi...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center