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

Thursday - June 26, 2008

From: Rosharon, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Identification of possible Bald cypress
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in the Houston area, last year we traveled to South Padre Island and,on the way, I noticed a tree that was just beautiful. It looked like a cross between a Norfolk pine and some kind of cycads. It grew very tall and straight up. The branches were straight out and the dark green leaf resembled the cycads. I am stumped; I see them in Houston now, but no one I ask knows the name.

ANSWER:

This sounds like Taxodium distichum (bald cypress), a native of Texas. Although the cypress is considered a water tree, bald cypress adapts to dry landscapes, providing shade, shelter for birds and is very attractive. It is called "bald" because it is deciduous, dropping its leaves in the Fall, as very few other conifers do. If this is not the tree you have been seeing, perhaps you could provide us with a photograph and we will try to identify it. Go to the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants page and find the directions for sending us photos in the lower right hand area of the page under "Plant Identification."


Taxodium distichum

Taxodium distichum

Taxodium distichum

Taxodium distichum

 

 

More Trees Questions

Smarty Plants on dogwoods
August 05, 2005 - I am interested in the worldwide distribution of the dogwood family/cornus. Specifically, I am interested in whether or not there are indiginous species on the Indian Subcontinent. Is there a resour...
view the full question and answer

Fruit trees for Kempner, Texas
November 29, 2013 - I just moved to Kempner , TX and would like to plant a couple of fruit trees in my 1 1/4 ac yard. I would like to plant a species that will do well and produce edible fruit. Any assistance will be app...
view the full question and answer

What is meant when Mimosa Tree is described as an invasive tree in San Antonio TX?
May 14, 2013 - When it is stated that the Mimosa Tree is invasive, does that mean that the Roots are invasive or does it mean that the seed pods will drop and make many more trees ?
view the full question and answer

Escarpment Black Cherry losing leaves in Austin, TX.
July 13, 2012 - Dear Mr. Plants: We live in Austin off of Mount Bonnell Road. We have beautiful 20 foot tall + black escarpment cherry tree very near the house with leaves turning yellow like it's about to drop th...
view the full question and answer

Pruning smoketree in New Jersey
May 29, 2009 - How far from ground level do I prune a relatively young Smoke tree to get the bush effect?
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