En Español

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

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
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - November 28, 2010

From: San Antonio, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Non-native Japanese maple in San Antonio
Answered by: Barbara Medford


I want to plant a Shaina Japanese maple in San Antonio, how do I plant it? I want to plant it near the house near the front door. The tree will be blocked by the house so it does not get too much afternoon sun. My soil is shallow due to limestone. I have a 8 oaks in my yard and want some other tree types at the house.


Acer palmatum, Japanese maple, is a native of, well, Japan, and therefore out of our range of expertise at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, where we are dedicated to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are being grown. 'Shaina' is a dwarf selection of Japanese maple. From the Missouri Botanical Garden, here is an article with information on the cultivation of this tree.


More Non-Natives Questions

Non-native Meyer lemon problems in Dripping Springs, TX.
July 02, 2014 - I have a Meyer lemon that looks very sick. The leaves, limbs, and fruit all have brownish gold raised spots that are the size of a pin head. The spots on the leaves seem to run along the center of t...
view the full question and answer

Non-blooming wisteria in Oklahoma
June 24, 2008 - I have a wisteria bush that doesn't bloom. It's two years old. What should I do?
view the full question and answer

Pruning of non-native chocolate mimosa
August 07, 2008 - I have a one year old chocolate mimosa that has grown 2.5 feet in height. It has seven leaf stems two feet from the bottom and only three at the top canopy. The trunk is only three quarters of an inch...
view the full question and answer

Is a mulberry tree undesirable?
June 27, 2013 - I have a hard time keeping plants alive, so I was happy when a random plant just started growing and thriving about 5 years ago in my yard. My mom (a frequent volunteer at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildf...
view the full question and answer

Non-native lilac in a pot in New Hampshire
May 18, 2009 - I live in an apartment with a balcony that gets morning sun but is in the shade by 3 pm. Can I plant a lilac in a pot? What perennial would do well in New Hampshire? I love lilacs and would like to...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center