Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - February 11, 2005

From: San Marcos, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Pruning, Trees
Title: Pruning a Wafer Ash to make it upright
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

How do I trim a Wafer Ash? It lays on the ground. Is that normal? Does it need to be upright?

ANSWER:

it is not uncommon for a wafer ash (Ptelea trifoliata) to droop. It is perfectly fine for it to grow along the ground if you like it that way. However, if you don't want it to do this, it is possible to shape it. It may take considerable pruning and patience to achieve a more upright tree depending on the size of the tree and the severity of the problem.

You can see some hints for pruning the wafer ash from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Horticulture Department.

 

From the Image Gallery


Wafer ash
Ptelea trifoliata

Wafer ash
Ptelea trifoliata

Wafer ash
Ptelea trifoliata

More Pruning Questions

Time to trim oak trees in Austin
October 29, 2011 - We have several large oak trees in desperate need of a good trimming. Given that the trees have had a very stressful drought year, when would be the best time to trim them?
view the full question and answer

Removal of pods when pruning Tecoma stans
May 10, 2013 - When pruning Tecoma stans for growth and shape control,should I cut off the pods?
view the full question and answer

Northern Catalpa Tree Doing Poorly
July 02, 2014 - One of our Northern Catalpa trees appears to be dying. It is about 28 feet tall and this year only about 1/3 of it is producing leaves. It is next to our largest Catalpa tree (about 65 feet tall and a...
view the full question and answer

Shaping cenizo in Duncanville TX
October 02, 2009 - Our Silverado Sage, which we expected to be 4' to 5' high and wide based on the label when we purchased it about 10 years ago, is nearly 7' tall and very random in shape (not the evenly rounded sha...
view the full question and answer

How to prune a Lantana tree
October 02, 2015 - I have a potted Lantana tree that will come indoors for the winter. It is quite large and should I prune it back for the winter? If yes, how do I prune it?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.