En Español

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
1 rating

Sunday - October 26, 2008

From: Branford, CT
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Planting, Watering, Shrubs
Title: Repotting of lemon cypress for drainage
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Hi, I bought a lemon cypress tree in a nice tin, It is in Plastic and the bottom has about 1.5" of water with no drainage in the plastic or tin. It will be kept inside. Does the plant need to be in a conventional planter with a hole on the bottom for drainage, or does this plant have water on the bottom that stays? Should I replant it? and is plant soil from the bag OK to use alone or with other mixture? Hope this question makes sense.

ANSWER:

Because we're really lazy, allow us to quote from an earlier answer on lemon cypress:

"The Lemon Cypress is a cultivar called Goldcrest, or Golden Crest, of Cupressus macrocarpa (Monterey cypress). You can read more about the tree from Plants for a Future, Floridata.com and from the Florida Cooperative Extension Service. Here are some intructions for outdoor care from ShootGardening and you can find care instructions for indoor Cupressus macrocarpa at indoor-plant-care.com and from the TopiaryShop.  It is a native of California and tremendously susceptible to a canker that kills the tree, especially if it is planted away from cool, coastal breezes."

From the Plants for a Future website, above, we finally found the hardiness zone for this tree. It is only hardy to Zone 8, so it's doubtful it would have a chance outside in Zone 6a, where Branford is located, so it's good you're planning to keep it inside.

Now, that we've covered that, go quick, quick, and get those lemon cypress roots out of that water. Yes, it needs drainage, yes, it needs to go into another pot, and yes, plant soil from a bag is fine. Some of the websites mentioned above have more specific plant and watering needs. What it does NOT need is for its roots to drown. 

Pictures of lemon cypress in pots.

 

More Shrubs Questions

Native Plants for a Steep Slope in TN
July 15, 2014 - Hello, I live in Knoxville, TN and have a very steep slope in our backyard. There is a lot of water erosion causing our grass to be covered with red dirt. I would love to try to plant something on thi...
view the full question and answer

Need shrubs to plant alongside a swimming pool in Tampa, FL.
September 05, 2011 - I Have a 3 1/2 foot gap between my pool screen and back fence. This gap runs about 30 ft. long. I would like to place small trees to look beautiful and to grow 6-8 ft. high to screen out my neighbor...
view the full question and answer

Low Shrubs for Under First Floor Windows in DC
February 24, 2015 - I'm in search of bushes to plant under the first floor windows of an apartment building I manage. I'm interested in both deterring intruders and in making the grounds more attractive. Any suggestion...
view the full question and answer

Low-growing plant for grave in boggy Newfoundland
May 30, 2008 - I am looking for any suggestions on what type of plant I can plant on a grave. It is very boggy (peat)land. I want something that is hardy & not too tall. We have about 8 weeks of summer, July & Augus...
view the full question and answer

Trimming Texas mountain laurel in Austin
August 27, 2009 - Is there a specific time to trim established mountain laurels? Should I cut off the dried seed pods since they are weighing down the branches?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center