Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Monday - August 09, 2010

From: Levittown, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Non-native chocolate mimosa in Levittown NY
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I purchased about 2 ft chocolate mimosa tree in early June of this year from a local nursery located in Nassau County, New York. It was doing in our Long Island soil just fine for over a month, I would water it properly. Some time in the 3rd week of July it started dropping its beautiful leaves, though they would not lose their color, not dry out or brown. Now it has no leaves left at all. It has been a very hot summer hear in New York this year, I absolutely doubt that I was stingy on water. I added the MiracleGro to its soil, water even more. I noticed some growth of (buds or suckers) appearing on the trunk now. Is there any hope it will come back to life? There are some other flowers in that spot near its root ball that are blooming without any problem which indicates there is enough water.

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the care and propagation of plants native to North America. Albizia julibrissin (mimosa, silk tree) is a native of Asia from Iran east to China and Korea. Cultivar "Chocolate Mimosa" was developed in Japan and begun recently being imported into the United States. Not only is the mimosa a non-native, but it is on many invasives list; that is, native plant people not only don't recommend you plant it, they recommend you remove it if you've already planted it. See this website from the Plant Conservation Alliance on "Least Wanted" mimosa.
 

More Non-Natives Questions

Difficulty with Clay Soil from Palm Bay, FL
August 22, 2012 - I had a very nice little native shady area behind my house for over 40 years, but now it has been cleared except for a 100 foot tall live oak in the center of this raised mound (50' x 80'). I've be...
view the full question and answer

Privacy screening from Phoenix AZ
April 14, 2013 - I live in the center of Phoenix, Az. On the eastern side of my house we have some 2 story condos next door. The width of the side yard is about 12'-15' and it gets lots of shade. I also have my powe...
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native Pink Jasmine from Austin
March 23, 2011 - A week or so ago, I purchased two beautiful pink jasmine vines. The first few days after planting, they did wonderful. Now, some leaves and stems are turning brown and some flowers have fallen off. ...
view the full question and answer

Habiturf for Round Rock TX
March 17, 2013 - Topic Habiturf. We have just aerated our lawn. We were planning on throwing out bermudagrass seed. We already have bermudagrass as well as many weeds in the lawn especially the blue stem clump grass w...
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native weeping willow in Greenville NY
September 10, 2009 - We live on the border of Zones 5b and 6a and have a weeping willow that grew so much in only 3 years and did quite well. However, there are aerial roots growing on its bark as well as part of the bark...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.