Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - March 10, 2010

From: Floresville, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation, Transplants
Title: How to transplant agarita in Floresville, TX.
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

How is the best way to propagate Agarita? I have acres of them in the pasture but want some for the house landscape and to grow. I was told they go dormant for a year if you dig them up to transplant.

ANSWER:

We're tempted to advise you to put in a section of barbed wire fence where you want the agarita to grow and let the birds do their thing.  But we won't.  Besides being inconvenient, you'd have to pull out a lot of privet and hackberry seedlings if you did that.

Mahonia trifoliolata (agarita) is usually difficult to transplant; large plants are especially difficult.  A big part of the problem is that they are often growing in such rocky soil that it is very hard to get the plant out without severely damaging the roots of the plant.  The smaller the root ball, the slower the plant will recover from the stress of transplantation.

If possible, dig around the shrub you wish to transplant in the spring to cut some of the roots.  By fall, the plant will have made new roots within the area that you'll be digging up to transplant.  Dig and translplant the agarita in mid to late fall.  Remove about 1/3 of the top growth of the plant when you transplant.  Water it in well and water again from time to time through the winter if it's a dry year.  Even with all of that, your plant is likely to sit and do nothing much for a year or two.  Good luck!

 

More Propagation Questions

Propagation of Agave suckers
November 18, 2014 - I'm trying to transplant Dragon Toes Agave suckers. Is this similar to other agave pup transplants?
view the full question and answer

How to propagate milkweed from root cuttings
June 08, 2009 - I am interested in propagating Asclepias speciosa (showy milkweed). Your info page for this species says it can be propagated via root cuttings. Does this mean I can lop off a chunk of the root/tuber ...
view the full question and answer

How and when to harvest bluebonnets.
April 30, 2010 - A previous answer mentioned harvesting bluebonnet seeds by pulling up the whole plant when the seed pods turn brown. Two clarifications - when do the seed pods turn brown as these plants are hard to ...
view the full question and answer

Removal of pups from Century Plant after blooming in Prairieville LA
October 03, 2009 - Will the main part of the century plant always die after it grows a stalk? I have babies coming off the base and need to know if I should separate them to keep them alive.
view the full question and answer

Where can seeds or plants of Ruellia nudiflora be obtained from Cedar Park TX
January 10, 2011 - Where can I purchase Ruellia nudiflora seeds or plants?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.