En Español

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
1 rating

Friday - May 14, 2010

From: Hochheim, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Pests, Groundcovers
Title: Eliminating straggler daisy from St. Augustine grass in Hochheim TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have straggler daisy in my St. Augustine grass. What herbicides work well on straggler daisy and won't ding up the grass too bad?

ANSWER:

You realize, of course, that you are asking us to help you get rid of a native plant (Calyptocarpus vialis (straggler daisy) in favor of a non-native grass. 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 being grown. We have even recommended Straggler Daisy as a shade ground cover. It will grow in shade, is tolerant of moderate foot traffic, is semi-evergreen and blooms with tiny yellow blooms from March to November, attracting small butterflies.  Stenotaphrum secundatum, St. Augustine grass, on the other hand, is a high maintenance, water guzzling grass that originated in Africa.

However, since you ask: Straggler Daisy can be pulled up, but it's not too easy, because it spreads by rhizomes underground. It is a dicot, or broadleaf plant, and the St. Augustine is a monocot, or narrowleaf plant. You can buy herbicides specifically for a broadleaf plant, and spray it on the area. It will not damage the monocot grasses it is mixed in with. However, spray with great caution, and try to find a windless day. Remember, your ornamental shrubs and trees are broadleaf plants, too. Too enthusiastic a spraying of the herbicide could result in damage or loss of some of your other more cherished plants. 

From Our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Calyptocarpus vialis

Calyptocarpus vialis

Calyptocarpus vialis

Calyptocarpus vialis

 

 

 

More Pests Questions

Pest Dug Up and Ate Hypoxis Corms
August 06, 2015 - After years of no problems, something recently dug up and ate all my Yellow star-grass corms. What is attracted to them and is there an organic way to prevent it?
view the full question and answer

Orange eggs on milkweed plants
October 18, 2012 - Hello I have milk weed in my flower garden. Every year I find small orange 'eggs' on the leaves and stems of the plant. I don't think these are the monarch eggs, but not sure if they are other...
view the full question and answer

Rabbit-proof Plants for Texas
July 03, 2014 - Do you have a list of flowers that rabbits will eat or will not eat so I know what to plant or avoid? I have a year-round rabbit population in my neighborhood and wish to co-exist with them without t...
view the full question and answer

Controlling sandburs from Austin
February 24, 2013 - Hello, What is the best way to prevent sticker burrs from growing in a rocky bed with no grass. There are many other plants we want to preserve and a drip line to keep them watered. We have 2 small k...
view the full question and answer

Failure to thrive of Lantanas
August 06, 2008 - Here at work we have 4 beautiful yellow Santanas(should I say had), the leaves have started to turn brown and no longer blooming. Appears to have a fungus or disease. Please help!
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center