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 - April 12, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Problems with pink oxalis in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a bed of pink oxalis. The leaves are turning rusty and withering. It is spreading. Can you tell me how to remedy this?

ANSWER:

There are 10 members of the genus Oxalis native to North America and 6 to Texas, none of which has the common name "pink oxalis." Oxalis is the largest genus in the wood-sorrel family, and the only Pink Oxalis we could find is Oxalis articulata, pink wood-sorrel, native to South America, particularly Brazil and Argentina. Since the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are growing, this plant is out of our expertise. We can tell you that we found sites that called it an "invasive weed," and know it is very difficult to eradicate from where it is unwanted because of its underground tubers. It is cold-tolerant to USDA Hardiness Zone 8b; Austin is Zone 8a. That's close enough and, in view of the hard freezes we had in the Austin area this year, might have been sufficient for you to be seeing freeze damage. In addition, the wood-sorrels ordinarily die back and disappear as warmer weather approaches. If you don't want it in your garden, due to its invasive nature, you might consider getting it out now, while you have the chance. However, the tiniest little bit of the bulbil from which the plant grows will produce more of it. 

Pictures of Oxalis articulata from Google. 

 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Care for a Campsis radicans in Yakima, WA
October 08, 2008 - I have a Campsis radicans it is in a 7" pot and the plant is 20" tall. It was a clipping given to me by a lady that is now out of town. My question is: I live in zone 6a so do I leave it in the p...
view the full question and answer

Damage to ruellia in Monroe LA
October 26, 2009 - I have hundreds of Ruellia Brittoniana. Dwarf Katie White, Katie Blue and Katie Pink. I am finding holes in some of the leaves, Some just have notches chewed out of them. Some of the leaves have...
view the full question and answer

Controlling non-native Pennisetum frutescens (Naked fountain grass)
December 07, 2014 - Three years ago I bought a pennisetum frutescans grass from a reputable online nursery. It gets no supplemental water, but it is taking over my yard. It is almost 7 feet wide now. Can you tell me how ...
view the full question and answer

Control of Paulownia tomentosa from Westminster MD
October 28, 2011 - I have heard that there is a type of herbicide that is to be applied to slashes made in the outer layer of invasive trees such as Paulownia. This type of application is reputed to prevent the little ...
view the full question and answer

Removing St. Augustine from flower beds
January 25, 2009 - We just had new landscaping put in at our house. We had planting beds prepped and mulched and had Zoysia sod installed outside the beds. The yard before had small areas of St. Augustine growing and no...
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