En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Viability of Ehretia anacua tree for Austin, TX

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
1 rating

Thursday - January 17, 2008

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Viability of Ehretia anacua tree for Austin, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Austin, TX and I see you've recommended the Ehretia anacua tree for someone living here. Also, my arborist mentioned it as a replacement for non-native, invasive trees. However, the database says that it might freeze back in Austin. How tall can this tree get in Austin and if it freezes will that kill the tree? It was also listed at the nursery as "fast" grower. What's the meaning of fast growth with respect to tree growth per year?

ANSWER:

We found (we think) the previous question to which you referred, in which several replacements were listed for non-native, possibly invasive trees in Austin. One of these was the Ehretia anacua (knockaway). We agree that the mention of freeze was a little vague as to whether they were talking about freezing in Travis County or farther north, to Dallas. It is mainly native to South Texas, but according to this Texas A&M Education site, it can be found as far north as Austin. The USDA map shows it distributed all over Texas, with the county distribution map showing it in Travis County and some other counties north of that. Other information we found said that as far north as Dallas, it could freeze, but that it was freeze-deciduous, which meant it would be nearly evergreen farther south, and probably would survive freezing anyway. And another cool thing: It is considered deer resistant, a big selling point in the Austin area. Not deer proof, there is no such thing, but resistant is good.

And in reference to your question about the meaning of fast growth with respect to tree growth, we found this quote from the Manual of Woody Landscape Plants by Michael Dirr:

"Rate of growth refers to the vertical increase in growth unless specified differently. Rate, as is true for size, is influenced by numerous variables such as soil, drainage, water, fertility, light, exposure, ad infinitum.

"The designation slow means the plant grows 12" or less per year; medium refers to 13 to 24" of growth; and fast to 25" or greater."

Our database shows the estimated mature size as being between 36' and 72'.

 


Ehretia anacua

 

 

 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Invasive, non-native Siberian peashrub for waller TX
February 02, 2012 - Good Morning Mr. Smarty Plants! I am trying to find out if the Siberian Pea Shrub is a good plant for Southeast Texas or if it is considered an invasive no no. It seems to have many qualities for wild...
view the full question and answer

Japanese Wineberry in Maryland
July 16, 2014 - Hello, we were at Cunningham Falls in Maryland and I can not identify this plant. If you could I would greatly appreciate it, thank you. It looks like a raspberry but the berries are inside small leav...
view the full question and answer

How to get rid of devils club (Oplopanax horridus)
November 22, 2007 - please tell me how to get rid of devils club!!!
view the full question and answer

Controlling vegetation around retention pond in Williamsburg, VA
September 21, 2009 - We planted Juncus effusus around a retention pond and various native shrubs last year. We are having a problem controlling bramble,lespedeza and broadleaf natives from taking over and native trees(wil...
view the full question and answer

Non-native Star Jasmine poisonous to dogs from Dallas
May 20, 2013 - Is star jasmine poisonous to dogs?
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center