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

Tuesday - September 30, 2008

From: Spicewood, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Trophy tree for Spicewood, Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I want to plant a trophy Mesquite at the bottom of the hill, in Spicewood. I'm told that it may not flourish, because of the soil in my area. If that is the case, what would be a striking tree as an alternative. I also looked up "Pride of Houston Holly" but could not find it. Thanks

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants wonders what kind of soil you have that Prosopis glandulosa (honey mesquite) wouldn't grow in??    According to the US Forest Service, mesquite grows in many different climates, habitats and soils—1) coastal prairies of southeastern Texas; 2) Rio Grande Plains of southwestern Texas; 3) western Texas and New Mexico; 4) Edwards Plateau of central Texas; 5) High Plains of northwestern Texas and the Oklahoma Panhandle; and 6) East-central Texas.  The soil types mentioned are loamy sand, sandy loam, calcareous silt loam, noncalcareous silt loam, gravelly sand loam, deep sandy loam, and calcareous clay. According to the Atlas of the Vascular Plants of Texas (B. L. Turner et al.  2003. Fort Worth, TX:  BRIT),  mesquite does occur in several counties adjacent to Burnet County.

Mr. SP is happy to try to find you another tree, however.  "Pride of Houston Holly" is a cultivar of the native Ilex vomitoria (yaupon).  It is an evergreen, medium-sized tree and apparently this cultivar consists of only female trees and, thus, all will bear fruit.

Here are some more possibilities that grow to similar size and are found in Burnet County or an adjacent county:

Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain-laurel) evergreen

Styphnolobium affine (Eve's necklacepod)

Chilopsis linearis (desert willow)

Leucaena retusa (littleleaf leadtree)

Frangula caroliniana (Carolina buckthorn)

Parkinsonia aculeata (Jerusalem thorn) evergreen

Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum)

Ungnadia speciosa (Mexican buckeye)

Cercis canadensis var. texensis (Texas redbud)


Prosopis glandulosa

Ilex vomitoria

Sophora secundiflora

Styphnolobium affine

Chilopsis linearis

Leucaena retusa

Frangula caroliniana

Parkinsonia aculeata

Prunus mexicana

Ungnadia speciosa

Cercis canadensis var. texensis

 

 

More Trees Questions

Plants under an oak tree from Corpus Christi TX
June 30, 2012 - My project: To grow white turk's cap under an old oak tree I first planted St. Augustine sod this spring because we had many oak suckers around the tree. We mixed new soil and compost, and laid the ...
view the full question and answer

Quercus polymorpha botanical name for Mexican white oak
June 19, 2007 - What is the scientfic name for the Monterrey Oak?
view the full question and answer

Should I purchase wax myrtle plants as liners or pots
July 18, 2011 - I want to buy some wax myrtle over internet.Place has wax myrtle "liners" They look very thin. Will these bushes grow quickly or should I spend more $ for 1 gallon plants. Just need a hedge fairly q...
view the full question and answer

Trees for townhome backyard in Fullerton, CA
August 15, 2009 - Hi, I live in a townhome with a big backyard here in Orange County. Last year, I got rid of my ficus trees that had grown too tall and big for a townhome backyard. Now, I would like to plant two tre...
view the full question and answer

Removal of invasive non-native Chinese wisteria
September 10, 2007 - I am going to be removing my ubiquitous chinese wisteria very soon (the method I'm going to use is undetermined). If I decide to use Round-up on the cut-stem (which may take more than one application...
view the full question and answer

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

Bibliography

Atlas of the Vascular Plants of Texas (2003) Turner, B. L.; H. Nichols; G. Denny; O. Doron

Search More Titles in Bibliography