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Mr. Smarty Plants - Want a source for Mexican redbud in Houston, TX

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Monday - October 04, 2010

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Transplants, Trees
Title: Want a source for Mexican redbud in Houston, TX
Answered by: Marilyn Kircus

QUESTION:

I live in west Houston and would like to purchase and plant a Mexican redbud in my yard. I have Googled to find one and also searched the Growit site without success. Where can I find one in Texas? I would like a 15 or 30 gallon tree.

ANSWER:

What a great time to ask this question.  The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center has Mexican redbud on the list of plants for the fall sale, which will be October 9-10 with a members-only sale on the afternoon of October 8.  However the tree will be small - probably either 1 or 5 gallons.

This tree is commonly used in the Texas Hill Country and further west.  So several hill country area nurseries carry it.

Madrone Nursery, a small family-owned grower, in San Marcos,  sells by appointment.  He has a 15-20 gal. 7' tree  listed here.

The Natural Gardener, in Austin, sometimes has them.

Barton Springs Nursery in Austin might have them. 

Here is a list of Austin Area Native Plant Nurseries. Besides the ones I've already listed, several of them have, or will have Mexican redbud trees.

Closer to home, you might contact Joshua's Native Plants in Houston. I'm not sure that he carries it, but he may have a supplier from whom he could order it for you.

And finally, I clicked on the Supplier list under the Explore Plants tab on the wildflower's webpage and got this list of  Houston area native plant sellers that have registered with the center.

Cercis canadensis var. mexicana (Mexican redbud) is redbud that grows in the driest circumstances. That is why it naturally grows in west Texas and you are not finding it locally. Cercis canadensis var. texensis (Texas redbud) grows in the hill country of Texas.  Check out the description of Cercis canadensis var.  anadensis (Eastern redbud) for a discussion on all three species. Both Texas and Mexican redbuds need very well drained soil and lots fewer inches of rain than Houston gets.  So be sure to amend the soil with decomposed granite or limestone, (or another rock-based amendment) plant on a mound, and don't add compost to the soil.  The soil also needs to be alkaline.  East Houston has acid soils and the rest is alkaline. You might also consider starting with a smaller tree.  I think that smaller trees can adapt better to being out of their native soils and you won't be out so much money if it drowns in Houston gumbo.

 


Cercis canadensis var. mexicana

  


Cercis canadensis var. texensis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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