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

Sunday - November 09, 2008

From: Huntington Beach, CA
Region: California
Topic: Trees
Title: Small tree for Huntingdon Beach, CA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have the exact same question as a previous tree question from Huntington Beach California. When I click on the answer it brings up another question. I would like to know the answer given for the 10 foot tree with a non-invasive root system. I would prefer a non-flowering tree because of my CA desert tortoises. Thanks

ANSWER:

We trust you meant you wanted inconspicuous flowers, not non-flowering. Almost all plants flower, it's part of their reproductive cycle. And, since we know nothing about California desert tortoises, we don't know if they would eat the flowers or what. We will probably give you a slightly different list of possibilities than the other correspondent to whom you referred. Most trees grow much larger than 10 feet tall, so we will find what we can, and then offer some shrubs that can be trimmed up into a small tree. Shrubs and smaller trees tend not to have such large, invasive roots as bigger plants. Usually, the roots extend beyond the dripline.

Follow each plant link to our Native Plant Database page on that plant. You will get information on how high the plant ordinarily grows, what kind of sun exposure and soil moisture it prefers, even bloom time and color. If you still don't have all the information you need, go to the bottom of that webpage and click on a link to Google for that plant, where you should find a number of sites. When you have selected the plants you like, go to our Native Plant Suppliers site. Enter your town name and state in the "Enter Search Location" box, and you will get a list of native plant nurseries, seed companies and landscape consultants in your general area. 

Umbellularia californica (California laurel) - evergreen, slow growing

Aesculus californica (California buckeye) - deciduous

Amelanchier alnifolia (Saskatoon serviceberry) - deciduous

Amorpha fruticosa (desert false indigo) - deciduous

Calycanthus occidentalis (western sweetshrub) - deciduous, Pictures

Comarostaphylis diversifolia (summer holly) - evergreen

Heteromeles arbutifolia (toyon) - evergreen

Morella californica (California wax myrtle) - evergreen, Pictures



Umbellularia californica

Aesculus californica

Amelanchier alnifolia

Amorpha fruticosa

Calycanthus occidentalis

Comarostaphylis diversifolia

Heteromeles arbutifolia

 

 

 

More Trees Questions

Tree with tap root for small area
August 24, 2008 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants: I'm looking for a tree with a tap root to plant for shade on the side of my patio. i have about a 4 foot area to plant in and it's 8 feet to my neighbors house. ..maybe somet...
view the full question and answer

Shrub that will grow outside in Zone 5 from Millbrook NY
April 21, 2012 - Is there any shrub, tree or other sort of plant that will grow well in zone 5 in a very large container outdoors?
view the full question and answer

Texas Redbud Suddenly Died in NM
November 06, 2014 - We had a Texas redbud, approximately 5 1/2 years old. It had been doing great then all of a sudden after it bloomed this spring, the leaves appeared but then shriveled right away. We noticed the trunk...
view the full question and answer

Poolside tree for Whitehouse TX
May 29, 2012 - What would you recommend for native shade tree or flowering tree on the north side of a swimming pool in East Texas/Smith County? Trying to avoid too much dropping of flowers, nuts, etc. Looking to ...
view the full question and answer

Disappearance of leaves on desert willow in Tucson AZ
August 08, 2009 - We have a Lois Adams Desert Willow (Tucson, Az). The leaves will pump out and then a day or so later, all of the leaves are gone. The only bugs we've seen on it are very, very small ants. Could this ...
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