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

Wednesday - May 06, 2009

From: Ft. Towson, OK
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Native tree for cemetery in Western Oklahoma
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

My siblings and I are wanting to plant a tree next to my Mother's grave at the cemetery. It is in Western Oklahoma so hot sun and constant high wind are both considerations to choosing the right tree. We can amend the soil upon planting and there is plenty of water available so those will not be issues. A Bradford Pear has been suggested but one is planted fairly close so we would prefer something different that would be suitable but fairly low maintenance besides the watering.

ANSWER:

Please don't plant a Bradford pear. They are non-native and certainly are not adapted to your described environment. At the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center we are committed to the use, care and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are being grown. A plant growing where its ancestors have grown for thousands of years will need less water, fertilizer and maintenance.You didn't mention where in Western Oklahoma, but we will take a look at the region and make sure we select only trees that grow in that part of the state. We will go to our Recommended Species list, click on Oklahoma on the map, Narrow Your Search to "tree" (for habit), and look at the possibilities. We found four that, according to the USDA Plant Profile are native to Western Oklahoma, have attractive blooms in the spring, and can get along fine with minimal care. 

Prunus angustifolia (Chickasaw plum) - evergreen, 15 to 30 ft. tall, blooms white February to May, medium water use, sun or part shade

Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum) - deciduous, 15 to 35 ft., blooms white, pink February to April, low water use, sun or part shade

Ptelea trifoliata (common hoptree) - deciduous to 36 ft., blooms white, green, brown in April, high water use, sun, part shade or shade

Sapindus saponaria var. drummondii (western soapberry) - deciduous, 10 to 50 ft. tall, blooms white May and June, low water use, sun or part shade


Prunus angustifolia

Prunus mexicana

Ptelea trifoliata

Sapindus saponaria var. drummondii

 

 

 

More Trees Questions

Non-native, and/or invasive bermudagrass, St. Augustine and Pistache from Houston
September 24, 2012 - Our St. Augustine lawn died suddenly this summer from either chinch bugs or grub worms (or both?), and a multitude of weeds and native Bermuda have taken over the area. Now that the weather has cooled...
view the full question and answer

Failure to bloom of one of two Texas persimmons from Wimberly TX
May 04, 2013 - Last year my son planted two texas persimmon trees. One is blooming ok this year and the other is not. It does not seem dead. What can I do or is is in fact dying?
view the full question and answer

Small native trees for northern Virginia
September 27, 2011 - Mr. Smarty Plants, I am looking for a native alternative to a Japanese Red Maple in northern Virginia. I would like a small tree that I can put in my front garden that will not pose a security risk my...
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing, tall taproot tree for El Paso
September 01, 2008 - I live in El Paso Texas and would like to know what would be a good shade tree to plant. I would like this tree to grow fast and tall. I would also like the roots to go straight down.
view the full question and answer

Difference between live oaks and post oaks in Driftwood TX
April 18, 2010 - What are the differences between Live Oaks and Post Oaks, and are both susceptible to Oak Wilt? Also, should we remove the Ball Moss on the branches of these trees? Or is the light green lichen on the...
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