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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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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!

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Tuesday - February 24, 2009

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Propagation
Title: How can I propagate wax myrtle by soft-wood or semi-hardwood cuttings?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Mr. Smartypants, I would like to propagate wax myrtle from mature plants I have growing in my yard here in Houston. I've read on the wildflower website to use "softwood" or "semi-hardwood" cuttings or 2"-3" root cuttings. Can you tell me more on how to use the cuttings or roots ~ what do I do with them? Place them in water to root? Place them in small pots of topsoil outside? I need a little more detail on the steps to propogate the plant. {or is there a website with more details?} I plan to plant 50-60 wax myrtles along a fenceline in Lavaca County on property I own there and figured I would try to utilize my own plants I have in my yard rather than buy 50-60 new plants. Thanks,

ANSWER:

Wax myrtle Morella cerifera (wax myrtle) is certainly an appropriate plant for a fence planting along a fence line. You are undertaking a project that will take time and patience.

 Mr. Smarty Plants will give you links to five resources that should prove helpful. They all tell you pretty much the same thing, but the clarity of explanation and illustrations vary from one to the other.

Ohio State University Extension

North Carolina State University

Washington State University Cooperative Extension

Virginia Cooperative Extension

University of British Columbia Botanical Garden


Morella cerifera

 

 

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