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?


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

Tuesday - June 02, 2009

From: Weatherford, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Why is my Chinkapin oak losing its leaves this spring?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills


We have a chinkapin oak that was planted about two years ago in our front yard. This year it leafed out nicely but about a month ago the leaves began to roll up, then dry out and fall off. It seems that the twig the leaf fell off of it now brittle. What could be happening?


Diagnosing plant diseases and developmental problems from afar is rarely successful.

Something that you can do is to see if you can determine how this spring is different from last spring. One common problemof trees in landscape conditions is overwatering. The University of Florida Extension has a nice article explaining soil plant water relationships.

I am going to suggest that you have someone from the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office in Parker County look at the tree and its leaves.  Another source of help would be to enlist the services of a certified professional arborist.









More Trees Questions

Freeze-damaged Texas Mountain Laurel in Austin, TX.
May 05, 2011 - I have a Texas Mountain Laurel (Sophora secundiflora) that is several years old. During this past winter, one of the freezes we had split one of the largest trunk right below the soil line. T...
view the full question and answer

Dog-safe Privacy Screen for Ocala, FL
June 25, 2015 - Am desperately searching for fast growing privacy that would be non toxic to dogs in Ocala, Florida (zone 9 I think). Wanted Leland cypress but due to toxicity it won't work.
view the full question and answer

More trees to go with live oaks in Schertz TX
July 13, 2010 - We moved to a new house that has two recently planted live oak trees. Other than those two little trees there is nothing else on the property. Because of what I read about the oak wilt I would like ...
view the full question and answer

Flowering Dogwood for NY
February 21, 2011 - Hello - can you advise me on a disease-resistant/hardy dogwood? Every nursery I've visited has discouraged me from planting dogwoods. What would you recommend? I live in Westchester County, NY
view the full question and answer

Fast growing shade tree for Goldsboro NC
February 04, 2013 - What is a good tree to plant in Goldsboro North Carolina to provide shade and a fast growing tree?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center