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

Thursday - December 18, 2008

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Lantanas with brown leaves
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have several lantana plants here in Austin, TX. They did extremely well all summer long up until our first freeze. It looks like they have all died. Are they just dormant or are they dead? Their leaves are brown and the branches break easily.

ANSWER:

If the temperature at your house has already dropped below freezing this fall—and many areas in Austin have—this is why your lantanas' leaves have turned brown and the stems have become brittle—your lantanas aren't dead, they're only "sleeping". All of our native Texas lantanas (Lantana urticoides (West Indian shrubverbena), Lantana canescens (hammock shrubverbena), Lantana achyranthifolia (brushland shrubverbena) and Lantana velutina (velvet shrubverbena) are perennials—they go dormant during the winter and regrow in the spring. Prune them back hard (6 to 12 inches from the ground) in late winter before they begin their new growth

You can read more about care of lantanas in the answer to a previous question.


Lantana urticoides

Lantana canescens

Lantana achyranthifolia

Lantana velutina

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Non-blooming rhododendron in Connecticut
June 02, 2008 - A two or three yr old rhododendron has not blossomed - ever! All other plants in landscape doing well, but not this one. Help
view the full question and answer

Low-Maintenance Hedge for Massachusetts
February 17, 2014 - I want to put in a native low-maintenance hedge in a sunny spot with plants that can take dry soil. I would like the plants to grow to less than 4 feet wide. It can be an informal hedge, but I don't ...
view the full question and answer

Non-native photinias dying from Austin
September 14, 2012 - I have some red tip potinias that are dying. The ends of the branches are dying and the leaves are turning brown, I don't think this is the fungus that affects most red tips, any clues?
view the full question and answer

Limiting erosion around pond from Brooklyn Park MN
May 20, 2013 - Minnesota resident, wants to find plant limit erosion from pond?
view the full question and answer

Native plants for a barrier hedge
October 13, 2008 - Is there a native hedge I can plant to provide privacy? I have hostile neighbors behind me and would rather plant a hedge than put up a fence. I looked through the Virginia native species and didn'...
view the full question and answer

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