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
1 rating

Wednesday - June 25, 2008

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Information about cenizo care and care of non-native tibouchinas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I just bought some tibouchinas and need some tips. I plan to plant them in an area that gets sun until about 2pm, then shade for the rest of the day. Will these plants thrive in this environment, or what are the best conditions for them? How far apart should I plant them, and how large can I expect them to grow in full-sun and part-shade conditions? Will Leucophyllum frutescens also thrive in a sun-till-2pm area?

ANSWER:

Well, Mr. Smarty Plants can't be of too much help with your tibouchinas since they are not native to North America and our focus and expertise are with plants native to North America. Tibouchinas are native to the tropical regions of South America—many are native to Brazil. We don't know what species you have, but T. urvilleana seems to be a popular one. You can read about its care from Floridata.com or try Googling 'tibouchina care' for other sites that have instructions for their care. Since you just bought your plants you could also go back to the store where you purchased them to see if they have care instructions. Our advice is to never go away from the store with a plant without care instructions in hand.

Now, we can tell you about Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush) since it is native to Texas, albeit more suited to the drier southwestern regions than humid Houston. However, it will grow in Houston and can grow up to 5 feet high and sometimes taller in landscaped settings with watering. It does best in full sun. It will also grow in part shade (2-6 hours of sunshine per day) but the more sun, the better off it will be. Watering in the summer will make it grow faster, but overwatering it or poor drainage may kill it. It is adapted to dry climatic condidtions.


Leucophyllum frutescens

Leucophyllum frutescens

 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Care of Passiflora incarnata or Passiflora coccinea
July 04, 2007 - Hi- I have two passionflowers, one red, one purple. I live in upstate NY. They grow very well up onto trellises, however, they have stopped producing flowers. Both are planted in pots (fairly large)...
view the full question and answer

Wintering of non- native jasmine in Newton KS
September 18, 2010 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I received a gorgeous jasmine for mothers day and I planted it in my front yard in the flower area close to the house. Can I keep it there all winter or do I need to dig it up a...
view the full question and answer

Non-native oleander failing to thrive in Corpus Christi
May 05, 2010 - I live in South Texas (Corpus Christi). My husband planted Red Oleander in partial to full sun about 1 1/2 weeks ago. They are watered by our sprinkler system. They have recently started to bloom, ...
view the full question and answer

Leaves on non-native Rose Cactus
January 30, 2009 - I have a Rose Cactus (Pereskia grandifolia). The leaves have all dropped off. I was wondering if this is normal in the winter. Also, is the pear shaped fruit edible.
view the full question and answer

Hiding a chicken house from Glen Rose TX
February 06, 2013 - To hide a chicken house, which do you recommend, crape myrtles or chinese photinias?
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