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 - January 27, 2006

From: New Braunfels, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Possible identification of Post Oak in New Braunfels, TX
Answered by: Joe Marcus and Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live 6 miles north of New Braunfels in the Hill Country and own 5 acres of land. The property consists of many escarpment live oaks, texas persimon, and ashe juniper. I believe I also have some Texas Red Oak, Texas Sycamore and other oak trees that I am having difficulty identifying. These oaks are the reason why I am writing this since I am wondering if you can help in identifying them. They are deciduous, are largely upright, are growing out of limestone, range from 20 to 50 feet in height and have fairly short, stubby branches which seem to alternate branching to the left and then to the right from the main trunk as one looks up the tree. The bark has "ridges" and is grey. I am relatively new to the area and have not seen the acorns or leaves. Perhaps my best bet is to wait until summer? Hope you can help!

ANSWER:

You probably will have to wait till spring to be absolutely sure what they are, but this sounds like a fairly good description of Post Oak (Quercus stellata). Here are more images from Vanderbilt University of the post oak.

Black-jack Oak (Q. marilandica), is also a possibility. You can see more images of the black-jack oak from Vanderbilt and from Duke University.

Unless you saw acorns and/or oak-type leaves on the trees, its also possible that you've misidentified the tree as an oak. It could be a Cedar Elm (Ulmus crassifolia), which also generally fits your description. Here are more images from Vanderbilt of the cedar elm.
 

More Trees Questions

Shade Trees for Flagstaff AZ
June 14, 2015 - I live in Flagstaff, AZ and in need of good shade trees all around the house. We live in the Doney Park area (east of Flagstaff) and it is very windy in the spring time. We need the trees for priva...
view the full question and answer

Florida law on removing orange trees
March 24, 2007 - I live in a co-op mobile home park with a board of directors that tell me that if I have to cut down my orange tree that Florida law says that I have to replace it with another orange tree. I say that...
view the full question and answer

What fertlilizer for live oaks under drought conditions?
July 01, 2011 - In your June 7 answer about helping live oaks survive the drought, you state that additional fertilization may help as well. What kind of fertilizer to you recommend and how should it be applied? Th...
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

Controlling oak suckers in Austin
June 24, 2012 - We have 2 live oak trees that are sprouting shoots all around the surrounding area. We would like to plant some grass and would like to remedy this first. We have mowed the shoots and still they jus...
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