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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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Sunday - August 22, 2010

From: Emerald Isle, NC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Non-Natives, Transplants
Title: Transplanting non-native yellow lantana in Emerald Isle, NC
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We live in Emerald Isle, NC. Can we transplant yellow lantana? It is not really a perennial but appears to be one at the coast. If so, when do you transplant?

ANSWER:

There are several members of the Lantana genus native to North America, within the expertise of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. The only one of those that we would consider an attractive landscape plant is Lantana urticoides (West Indian shrubverbena); it is not yellow but multi-colored. 

We are fairly sure that your lantana is Lantana camara, a tropical not native to North America. It has been hybridized so much that there is no way we could know exactly how it should be treated. From Monrovia Nurseries, we found a page on 'Chapel Hill Yellow Lantana.'  Note that it mentions that it is a cross between Lantana camara 'Miss Huff' and 'New Gold,' so you will understand why we don't mess with hybrids.

However, we can tell you that if your lantanas are far enough south to perennialize, rather than perform as annuals, there is certainly no reason why you should not be able to transplant them. Wait until late Fall, when the leaves are all browning anyway, or have even fallen off. Then, cut the plant back to about 6" above the ground, and leave it until early Spring. It can then be dug up and moved into a prepared hole. It is a full sun plant. 

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Lantana urticoides

Lantana urticoides

 

 

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