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
1 rating

Thursday - March 25, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Which is best-Oklahoma Redbud or Texas Redbud in Austin?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Northwest Austin and would like to plant a small redbud tree in my front yard. My yard gets full sun. Which is better - the Texas redbud or the Oklahoma redbud?

ANSWER:

Cercis reniformis 'Oklahoma' (Oklahoma Redbud) is not in our Native Plant Database, but we can find no evidence that it is a hybrid, so that would count as a native tree. This USDA Forest Service site Cercis reniformis 'Oklahoma' gives the tree high marks, but is of the opinion that it not being grown very widely in the nursery trade, so you might have difficulty obtaining a tree to plant. Cercis canadensis var. texensis (Texas redbud) is, of course, the one generally available in the Austin area. Since we have not seen the 'Oklahoma' nor have any personal experience with it, about all we can do is share with you what we found, including the USDA Forest Service site above. This Backyard Gardener site says the plant is more commonly known as Cercis canadensis var. texensis (Texas redbud) 'Oklahoma," which would infer that some nursery retailers are just adding the 'Oklahoma' to enhance the sales appeal. In a case like that, it's a judgment call; if you can find a nursery (or nurseries) carrying each plant, you can personally inspect them for perceived differences. This is not a good time to plant the trees, anyway, as we will soon be in the very hot part of our year, and transplant shock is a major killer of new young trees. If you have the opportunity to visit the so-named trees over a period of time, that would give you a chance to compare not only the blooms (just now out in Austin) but the leaves and bark, and make your purchase in mid to late Fall for planting. 

Pictures of 'Oklahoma' from Google

Pictures of Cercis canadensis var. texensis (Texas redbud) from our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Cercis canadensis var. texensis

Cercis canadensis var. texensis

Cercis canadensis var. texensis

Cercis canadensis var. texensis

 

 

 

More Trees Questions

Diagnosis of problem with Parsley hawthorn
August 06, 2007 - I have a Crataegus marshallii (Parsley hawthorn) that is about 3 years old. It leafed out this spring and flowered lightly. As the summer has progressed, though, the leaves have been dropping premat...
view the full question and answer

Flowers under pine trees from Elkhart Indiana
May 02, 2013 - I have a number of pine trees at the back of my lot and would like to plant flowers under the tree. What can I plant?
view the full question and answer

Removal of live oaks leaves on lawn in Austin
October 11, 2011 - We have about a half inch or so of mostly live oak leaves still on the ground which I thought was good root protection and also holds in moisture. There is a small group of people in our condo subdi...
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing, tall taproot tree for El Paso
September 01, 2008 - I live in El Paso Texas and would like to know what would be a good shade tree to plant. I would like this tree to grow fast and tall. I would also like the roots to go straight down.
view the full question and answer

Are blue spruce (Picea pungens) poisonous?
May 30, 2009 - Are blue spruce trees poisonous at all? Thank you.
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center