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 - September 17, 2008

From: Custer, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Insects in non-native weeping willow
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

My weeping willow is dropping small black insects. Thousands of 1/16" cover the ground etc. Insects stain a raspberry, purple color when smashed. Insects are very soft.Insects present about 3 weeks now. What is this?

ANSWER:

Non-native to the United States, Salix x sepulcralis is a hybrid of a Chinese species (Peking willow) and a European species (white willow), and is said to grow in Zones 5 to 8 in the United States. It is weak-wooded, fast-growing and, therefore, short-lived. It has aggressive roots, can lift sidewalks and interfere with sewer lines, often growing on soil surface, making a problem with mowing. It is susceptible to a number of pests and diseases, and notorious for littering the ground beneath it. It also falls out of the expertise of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, as we specialize in plants native to North America. In addition, we're not really entomologists, and probably can't identify the bugs you are dealing with. See this University of Florida Extension website on Weeping Willows for more information as well as this Q&A from North Dakota State University Extension on weeping willows.

This Iowa State University Department of Entomology website on Bark Aphids may help you identify your bugs. And you might also contact your Michigan State University Extension Office for Mason County. They could have more specific information, particularly if there is an outbreak in this sort of problem in your area.

 
 

More Non-Natives Questions

Plants that will survive in Mammoth Lake, CA
June 25, 2009 - What fruit trees survive the Mammoth Lakes winter? What roses will grow in Mammoth? Please give me a list of all trees that grow in Crowley and Mammoth lakes?
view the full question and answer

Drooping leaves on iris in Phenix City, AL
May 02, 2009 - I had a bed FULL of iris rhizomes so I thinned them out and made two beds. They flowered perfectly but some of the flower stalks and some of the leaves began drooping over. The flowering is over. The ...
view the full question and answer

Failure to thrive of non-native Japanese maple
May 03, 2010 - My 10 year old Japanese red maple leaves suddenly started to curl up and die at the end of summer last year. Only about a quarter of the tree leaved out this spring, branches are dead. Can I plant ano...
view the full question and answer

Non-native bougainvillea annual or perennial in Las Vegas?
April 04, 2010 - Are bouganvilleas annual or perianneal plants? What do you do w/them in the winter time. We live in Las Vegas NV
view the full question and answer

Bringing Non-native Cannas out of Winter Storage
February 15, 2013 - Mr. Smarty Plants - Is it possible to force canna tubers? Would placing them on a heating pad help? I am in Ohio - zone 5. Thank you
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