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

Monday - June 15, 2009

From: Tucson, AZ
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Problems with Green Cloud cenizo in Tucson, AZ
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a large number of Green Cloud Texas Rangers on my property. I water all very consistently, once a week and most of these are around 5-6 ft tall and 15 years or more old. We've only had a few inches of rain in 09. This summer, several have not leafed out so well. With an overabundance of tiny leaves that do not seem to be filling out or maturing. So many that the stems are not discernible due to way to many (tiny)leaves on each stem. In several plants this is only occurring partially, while the rest of the plant has grown in its new leaves as it usually does. Due their maturity I would love to know how I can correct this problem without losing anybody, my guess is some sort of stress.But the neighboring plants are fine. Any ideas?

ANSWER:

"Green Cloud" is the trademarked name of a cultivar of Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush), also known as Cenizo and Texas Ranger. Green Cloud was released in 1982 and trademarked by Texas A&M. Instead of the fuzzy silver leaves of Cenizo, Green Cloud has smoother, dark green leaves.  When plants that have been doing well for several years suddenly begin to deteriorate, about all you can do is ask what in the environment has changed to cause this problem? 

We are going to assume that the growth habits of Green Cloud are near enough to the species habits that we can group them together in trying to analyze what is going on. This Texas Native Plants Database from Texas A&M on Cenizo discusses some of the requirements of growing the plant successfully, and especially warns about the susceptibility to cotton root rot (Texas A&M plantanswers). The plant should not be fertilized nor overly watered; humidity and high night temperatures are lethal. You probably already know that Cenizo requires a well-drained soil, which will also discourage cotton root rot. 

Two disease or insect possibilities are scale (University of Illinois Extension) and powdery mildew (University of California Integrated Pest Management). 

Since we are not plant pathologists and it is virtually impossible to diagnose a plant's problems without seeing it, we suggest you first examine your affected plants for any of the possible problems discussed above. Then, contact the Arizona Cooperative Extension Office for Pima County. If others in your area are having the same difficulty, the Extension Office would be in the best position to diagnose and recommend treatment. 

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Orange patches circling cedar branches
May 15, 2010 - We have dry rusty orange patches that circle several of our Cedar branches. There are a few orange blobs on different limbs, but they do not look like the pictures of Cedar Rust (no horns). The foli...
view the full question and answer

Live oak trees with rusty spots and holes on tree trunks
September 21, 2011 - I have live oak trees that have developed rusty spots, small holes on the tree trunks and sawdust on the trees base. They were planted in Oct 2010. We have had a hot dry summer in Texas this year an...
view the full question and answer

Discouraging rabbit snacking in the garden in Pearland TX
May 07, 2010 - I planted winecups and pink evening primrose in my new landscape beds amongst other native grasses and shrubs. Rabbits have been eating these wildflowers down to the ground. I want to attract wildli...
view the full question and answer

Problems with Escarpment black cherry from Ponder TX
February 11, 2011 - I have an escarpment black cherry that is about three years old and about 9 feet tall. It was healthy until this last summer when its began to bark peel and sap run out at the base of the tree. The af...
view the full question and answer

Stem canker or leaf fungus in Morella cerifera
June 14, 2007 - Dear Mr.Smarty Pants: The upper half of our wax myrtle, which we had allowed (with artful pruning) to reach about ten feet suddenly died this spring (it dropped most of its leaves and didn't sprout...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center