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?


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
20 ratings

Wednesday - July 30, 2008

From: Port Charlotte, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Non-Natives, Planting, Shrubs
Title: Will desert rose (Rosa stellata) survive in south Florida
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I have a mature desert rose and I wanted to plant it in the ground. I live in southwest Florida.I want to know will it survive and should I wait to plant it next year?


Mr. Smarty Plants suspects you are talking about Adenium obesum (desert rose), a native of Africa and Arabia. Our focus and expertise here at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center are with plants native to North America, so this plant doesn't really fall under our purview. We did find, however, that the University of Florida Extension has a pamphlet devoted to the cultivation of A. obesum (desert rose) in Florida—so, Mr. SP supposes it will survive although Mr. SP still thinks, since it is a desert plant, it may have difficulty with the Florida rainfall and high humidity. Please read the pamphlet for details. You can also find more instructions for care by Googling the scientific name.

There is a remote possibility that you are talking about Rosa stellata (desert rose) which is native to North America and grows in dry mountain areas from western Texas to Arizona. Since it, too, is a desert plant, it probably would have difficulty with the high amount of rainfall and humidity in South Florida. However, if you planted it in full sun and in an area with good drainage, you might get it to survive.



More Non-Natives Questions

Oak trees shedding leaves in Denton TX
May 27, 2012 - In Denton, TX we have two mature Quercus buckleyi. It is May 11th 2012 and one of these trees has been shedding green leaves for the last week. The only changes we have made are: planted English ivy...
view the full question and answer

Non-native strawberry tree dying in Mt. View CA
August 01, 2010 - My strawberry tree has brown leaves and is dying, what can I do?
view the full question and answer

Problems with shrubs by pool in Bethesda, MD
February 24, 2012 - We are trying to grow Otto Luyken Laurels by a pool and doing okay, some brown spots on leaves, but not many. Also have Arbivatea beside the pool about 3 feet from the edge of the pool. They have a l...
view the full question and answer

Plants native to South Florida and the Caribbean
June 22, 2007 - What are the plants native to South Florida and the Caribbean?
view the full question and answer

Plant Identification from Honolulu HI
April 24, 2014 - We have a ground cover in our Honolulu garden that I have been told is Watermelon Plant. (Not the fruit). We would like more, but cannot find it or the proper name for it. Aprox. 6" round leaf. It...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center