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
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 Watering Questions

Consequences of overwatering plants
February 05, 2010 - Explain how an error on the high side when watering would affect soil fertility management, IPM efforts?
view the full question and answer

Watering practices for live oaks in drought from New Braunfels TX
September 04, 2011 - We have conflicting info about watering live oaks. An arborist says to water now using soaker hoses or small sprinklers and a landscaper who spoke to our garden club said that after August is too late...
view the full question and answer

Watering a vegetable garden in San Marcos TX
March 24, 2012 - Can you give me a general idea how long to run my drip irrigation on my raised vegetable garden? Currently I use it twice daily for one hour. The soil feels slightly moist but not very damp. Should...
view the full question and answer

Failure to thrive of desert willow in Wimberley TX
August 10, 2010 - I have a desert willow. It is always, whether I water it or leave it alone, yellow/ brown leaves, dark spots on the leaves, losing leaves. now it looks sad and not very healthy. Can you please tell m...
view the full question and answer

Environmentally friendly and drought resistant alternatives to St. Augustine grass
September 28, 2006 - As a member of the planning committee of our property owners association in Wimberley TX, we are researching ways to make our landscape environmentally friendly and drought resistant. We have 60,000 ...
view the full question and answer

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