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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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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!

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Saturday - June 26, 2010

From: Las Cruces, NM
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Diseases and Disorders
Title: Yellowing leaves on non-native globe willow in Las Cruces, NM
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Las Cruces, NM. I have a good size globe willow tree. The leaves are turning yellow and brown dryness at tips and leaves are falling off. Does it just need water?

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America, but to the area in which they are being grown. 

 

Salix matsudana, globe willow, is a native of eastern Asia, and therefore out of or range of expertise. Willows generally are fairly weak, short-lived trees, susceptible to many insects and diseases, as well as dropping a lot of litter. The globe willow is often infected with slime flux, a bacterial disease that is soil-borne. They are frequently found in the Rocky Mountain area, in warm valleys, so while they are not native to North America, they are at least well adapted to the area in which you live. You are in USDA Hardiness Zone 8, so your willow can probably survive, but we would certainly do supplemental watering when the weather is hot and dry. 

For more close to home advice, contact the New Mexico State University Extension Office for Dona Ana County.

 

 

 

 

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