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?


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

Tuesday - June 02, 2009

From: Marble Falls, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: What to do about powdery mildew on Pavonia lasiopetala?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills


My Pavonia lasiopetala seems to have gotten mildew this spring. I was hoping that warm weather would get rid of it. Instead it has spread to most of the plants which are located in widely separated beds. Should I pull it all out? Or will it recover? I can't see that it has affected any of the other plants in the same beds.


Pavonia lasiopetala (Texas swampmallow) is a popular garden accent plant throughout Texas, even though it originates on dry, rocky woods or banks of South, Central or West Texas. Like many other species in the mallow family, it is very susceptible to powdery mildew.  While pavonias leaves are sometimes greatly disfigured, the plant is seldom seriously injured by an infestation of mildew.  Before pulling it out, I would suggest trying to control the mildew. I've listed some websites that explain mildew, its causes and treatments, including both organic and chemical remedies.

Golden Harvest Organics


Washington State University Extension

Alabama Cooperative Extension System

Another source of information is the Burnet County Extension Office.

Pavonia lasiopetala

Pavonia lasiopetala






More Diseases and Disorders Questions

How to correct Anacacho leaves that are turning brown and curling in Driftwood, TX?
May 11, 2012 - Anacacho lunarioides leaves are turning brown and curling,how do I correct?
view the full question and answer

Effect of heavy rains on Lindheimer Muhly
May 04, 2015 - It is April 2015, in San Antonio we've had very heavy rains recently. My Lindheimer muhly, which was looking beautiful, has now turned brown all over. Is this normal or is this a problem?
view the full question and answer

Why is my Mountain Laurel in distress?
November 26, 2008 - We have planted our 2nd Texas Mountain Laurel in the same spot (after fresh berm built with sandy loam) and it is not looking good in less than 2 weeks. We have an identical berm on the other end of...
view the full question and answer

Burning sulfur over coals in the home for insect control.
July 18, 2008 - Is burning sulfur(over hot coals) in your home a safe way of getting rid of ants and insects?
view the full question and answer

Insect infestation of plants, dog and home
September 14, 2008 - I have plants that some kind of bug is killing them, my fan plam, ficus tree and other plants. The leaves are drying up and falling off. Apparently, they also are infestion my apartment. I feel them c...
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.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center