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

Wednesday - October 06, 2004

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Disposal of non-native chinaberry and ligustrum and their seeds
Answered by: Stephen Brueggerhoff

QUESTION:

I've got some chinaberry and ligustrum in a section of our lot that I am going to remove to make room for native plants. Both have berries, & I was wondering if running them through a chipper will have the effect of spreading the seeds, causing future problems.

ANSWER:

Both chinaberry (Melia azaderach) & privet (Ligustrum sp.) are introduced species with invasive tendencies, placed on invasive plant lists by the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council & the SE Exotic Pest Plant Council. They are quite successful regarding distribution primarily because of the seed (i.e. size & number of seed). Running the seeds through a chipper is not likely to destroy all, or even most, of the seed. This is especially true of the smaller Ligustrum seed. It will be a bit more work, but since both plants exhibit their seed in clusters, you could remove the clusters after you have cut down the trees before you put them through the chipper. This would minimize the number of berries in the chipped material. You can then dispose of the seeds so that they will not have the chance to germinate in your garden. You could also compost the chipped material, but may have to hand weed any propagules that survive a composting process. The other alternative is to collect all the chipped material and dispose of it without spreading it on your garden.
 

More Non-Natives Questions

Native shrubs to replace non-native boxwood in Parker County, TX
January 31, 2009 - I'm looking to replace some Japanese Boxwoods my wife planted years ago with some native plants, they run along the front of our house next to the foundation and porch about 60' in length. I prefer ...
view the full question and answer

Landscaping in Avalon TX
January 23, 2013 - I just bought my first and last home in Avalon Texas. I am looking forward to starting my garden. I am interested in all year around flowers. however I am in the country, when it rains, my yard becom...
view the full question and answer

Texas native bamboo vs. non-native for hedge.
August 25, 2008 - Why is Mr. Smarty Plants so against bamboo when there is a native American/Texan bamboo and an active bamboo society in the Austin area? I live in Central East Austin and I need the cheapest, fas...
view the full question and answer

Possible non-native squash and gourd cross from Kyle TX
June 10, 2012 - Last year I gathered seeds from the yellow squash plants that were grown from a seed packet (hybrid, I assume). Well, now the fruit produced by those plants seems to be a cross between a yellow squash...
view the full question and answer

Hurricane resistant alternatives to crape myrtle
September 02, 2007 - Are there any native small to medium trees (15-25 ft) to use instead of crapemyrtles (Lagerstroemia indica)? Crapemyrtles come in many colors and bend with hurricane winds instead of snapping or uproo...
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 | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center