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
2 ratings

Wednesday - July 29, 2009

From: Rusk, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Propagation of Prunus Mexicana in Rusk TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

How do you scarify seeds from the Prunus Mexicana? Can the branches be made to grow roots?

ANSWER:

Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum) is native to Texas and to the area around Cherokee County, so it should do well in your garden.

Here are the Propagation Instructions for Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum) from our Native Plant Database:

"Propagation Material: Softwood Cuttings
Description: Prunus species may be rooted from dormant hardwood, softwood, semi-hardwood, or root cuttings. Semi-hardwood and softwood cuttings taken in summer root easiest. Seeds of P. mexicana require a period of after-ripening followed by cold stratification.
Seed Collection: Collect fruit when it is filled out, firm, and its ripe color. Clean seeds from pulp. Storage viability is maintained at 31-41 degrees. Loses viability rapidly if allowed to dry out after collection and cleaning.
Seed Treatment: For spring sowing, stratify seeds in moist sand for 30-60 days in a greenhouse, then cold stratify (36-41 degrees) for 60-90 days. Plant well before high temperatures."

Sounds like you will be better off with the stratification method, rather than scarifying. Here is information from Suite 101 on How to Cold Stratify Seeds.

You cannot grow a new tree from a branch, but rather from cuttings of wood in various stages, as seen above in the Propagation instructions. For information on rooting cuttings, go to this North Carolina State University Extension website Plant Propagation by Stem Cuttings: Instructions for the Home Gardener. 

See this USDA Plant Profile on Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum) for pictures of the seeds.

\

 

From the Image Gallery


Mexican plum
Prunus mexicana

Mexican plum
Prunus mexicana

Mexican plum
Prunus mexicana

Mexican plum
Prunus mexicana

More Propagation Questions

Adventitious sprouts on oak tree in Austin
April 26, 2010 - Hello, I have an Oak tree which was planted in about 2002, which has adventitious sprouts. The tree has always sent these up, and we cut them off below ground. The tree has always been a 'runt', b...
view the full question and answer

Gregg's Mistflower stressed in Fredericksburg TX
August 07, 2013 - My Gregg's Mist Flower plants are very stressed. The blooms have turned brown and the leaves are drooping. Plants are receiving moderate sun, partial shade. Do they need daily watering this time o...
view the full question and answer

germinating Gulf coast penstemon and purple coneflower
June 03, 2011 - I'm interested in propagating gulf coast penstemon (penstemon tenuis) from seed. Do I have to mascerate the 'berries' to remove the pulp from the seed, and do I have to stratify the seed to get th...
view the full question and answer

Seed source for Carex texensis from Louisville KY
May 02, 2012 - Your reply to my question re a grass for my Kentucky home with cistern only water available was much appreciated, Carex texensis was recommended. I am unable to find this product for sale other than ...
view the full question and answer

Seed collection from rain lilies
May 14, 2008 - Hello, I have some rain lilies growing in our yard. I've collected some seed heads, but am not sure what steps to take now. They were all off of broken stems (the dogs are not as cautious as I am...
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