En EspaŅol

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?


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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - November 07, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Small flowering tree for cemetery in TX
Answered by: Anne Bossart


I am looking for a native large shrub or small tree to plant at a cemetery in Pflugerville, TX, preferable something with flowers. I need something that won't have a large root system that would disturb caskets or tombstone. Would an anacacho orchid be a good choice? If not, what would you suggest.


According to our Native Plant Database, Texas is the only US state where  Bauhinia lunarioides (Anacacho orchid tree) is native and it will grow to  height of 6-12 feet at maturity.

It seems to me, that it would be a fitting tribute and a suitable plant in a Texas cemetery.  It has a graceful form and delicate leaves.  It flowers generously in spring and then sporadically thorughout the rest of the growing season (there is one at the Wildflower Center that has blooms on it now).

Seeing as the tree is relatively small and root systems are in balance with the tree they must support,  there is no need for concern about the roots; assuming you have verified that planting trees in the cemetery is permitted. 

Despite its delicate appearance, it is a tough little tree.  It will need to be watered until it is established but do not fertilize it.

Bauhinia lunarioides

Bauhinia lunarioides







More Trees Questions

Problems with Cedar Elm in Kerrville TX
April 28, 2012 - We live in 10 miles outside Kerrville - have a Cedar Elm tree - planted 4 or 5 years ago, 15-20 foot high, is losing leaves in the top 1/4th. Rest of leaves look healthy and green.
view the full question and answer

Thinning out of maple tree following heavy winds
July 26, 2008 - A 15 yr old red maple lost significant fruit in spring from heavy winds, in summer the tree seems thinned out. Is this the reason? Tree is otherwise very healthy and has always had thick foliage in ...
view the full question and answer

Is Lemon Cypress toxic?
August 15, 2012 - Is the Lemon Cypress toxic?
view the full question and answer

Small native flowering tree for Virginia
September 21, 2009 - Could you recommend a small flowering tree (8-10' mature size) to plant in front garden next to the house. Full sun. Something that doesn't have invasive roots that would damage the house. Thanks...
view the full question and answer

Trees suited for rocky, caliche soil of Central Texas
September 20, 2011 - I need to replace aging ashes. I have planted 2 Monterey oaks, but I would like to know what else I could plant whose roots will grow well in NW Austin caliche, rocky soil? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center