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
1 rating

Thursday - June 11, 2009

From: Arlington, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Sticky white substance from Arizona Ash tree in Arlington TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Our Arizona Ash Tree is producing a white substance that floats down from the tree almost like a snowflake the size of a bb. You cannot see it on the tree/leaves. When it lands on the car, it takes the shape of a tiny pyramid and when you wipe it off, it leaves a greasy residue. What is this and how do we get rid of it? We've had these trees for many years and have never seen this before. Thank you.

ANSWER:

Fraxinus velutina (velvet ash), also called Arizona Ash, is discussed in this USDA Forest Service website Velvet Ash. Among the pests that are mentioned in that article are ash borers and verticillium wilt. Neither of these present the symptoms you are describing. Another possibility is found in this forestpests.org site Woolly Ash Aphid. One more suspect is found in this University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences website Ash Whitefly.

Since we are gardeners and neither plant pathologists nor entomologists, about the best we can do is suggest you look at these websites we have mentioned and see if you recognize any of the symptoms. Then, consider contacting the Texas A&M AgriLIFE Extension Office for Tarrant County. Perhaps there are others in your area experiencing these problems, and they can help you with a diagnosis and, hopefully, a solution. 

 

More Trees Questions

Two Holly Cultivars for a Texas Front Landscape?
February 22, 2016 - We are starting a new with our landscape. All existing 30-year-old plants are going to be removed. We would like a focal point at the front door area and are considering 'Savannah' or 'Nellie R. St...
view the full question and answer

Recently planted live oak tree in Boerne, TX
February 07, 2009 - My brother planted a live oak in August. It was from a nursery and had a root ball. It looks dead but I keep watering it. The trunk is about 6 inches around. The leaves died but when the winds came th...
view the full question and answer

Can Condalia hookeri (Brasil or Bluewood condalia) self-pollinate?
May 07, 2014 - Good morning Mr. SP, I see from your description of Condalia hookeri that this species has bisexual flowers. Do you know if it is self-incompatible?
view the full question and answer

Watering oaks in Houston, TX.
June 07, 2011 - Our yard (Real County, TX.) has many oak trees. We never water these trees, but I wonder if you recommend watering during this extreme drought. The trees look very stressed and are covered in ball m...
view the full question and answer

Need a tree to replace a large oak tree that may be dying in Bedias TX.
April 28, 2011 - I live in Bedias, TX in Grimes County. One of the largest oak trees on my property looks like it's dying. It's simply not leafing out well. I literally can't afford for this to happen since I depen...
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