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
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - January 15, 2009

From: Chappell Hill, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation, Transplants
Title: Starting transplants of native Pleopeltis polypodioides
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I would like to know how to start Pleopeltis polypodioides (resurrection fern) growing in my oak trees. I have a source for the plants but do not know how to start the transplants on the limbs of the trees.

ANSWER:

Pleopeltis polypodioides ssp. polypodioides (resurrection fern) is a native plant and an epiphyte. In Central Texas we are all familiar with the epiphyte  Tillandsia baileyi (reflexed airplant), also known as ball moss, that is similarly fond of oak trees. Epiphytes do no harm to host plants, as they take their nutrients from rain and dust in the air. We learned from this Floridata website Pleopeltis polypodioides that it can be easily transplanted by wedging the rhizomes (something like "roots") into the furrows in the oak bark. When the fern dries out, it pulls its leaves in to protect the moisture it already has, and almost disappears. A light spray with a hose will bring it back to life, thus the name. As it spreads by spores, once you have established it, the plant will probably take care of spreading on the host tree and others near it. 


Pleopeltis polypodioides ssp. polypodioides

 

 


 

More Propagation Questions

Research on Atriplex confertifolia in Austin
January 21, 2010 - I have heard a lot about Atriplex confertifolia (Shadscale). Has the Center done any research/trial growing of this plant for possible adaptability to Hill Country (west Austin) area? If this is a ca...
view the full question and answer

Germinating Hibiscus martianus, Heartleaf hibiscus
June 11, 2013 - Is there some secret to getting Heart Leaf Hibiscus to germinate from seed? I have tried several times, but have had no luck getting them to germinate.
view the full question and answer

Plants for church gardens in Ft. Worth TX
November 07, 2013 - Second attempt. Our church has many gardens in Fort Worth, TX. There are gardens for blue,red,yellow,white,purple,orange,pink,mixed,community garden,roses, and more. I am interested in the la...
view the full question and answer

Dogwoods cross-pollinating from Snyder, CO
October 24, 2012 - I have a red twig and a yellow twig dogwood. Will they cross-pollinate to produce berries? Thank you
view the full question and answer

Pollination of blackberries in Lake Winnebago, MO
May 27, 2010 - Not sure if blackberries are native, but my daughter got a start of one at a plant exchange at the nature center. Do we need more than one for it to pollinate correctly? We have strawberries growing i...
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