En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Bumelia sending up shoots in Austin

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 28, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Pruning, Shrubs
Title: Bumelia sending up shoots in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a bumelia that is sending up shooters everywhere in my yard. Everywhere!! I started to dig them up, but many come from deep roots and my digging seems to have encouraged the tree to send up more shooters. Ideas on how to control?

ANSWER:

Sideroxylon lanuginosum (Gum bumelia) is a member of the Sapotaceae Family of plants, and we did some research trying to determine if that family was more prone to putting out root sprouts, or shoots. This was never mentioned in the literature we saw, so we are just assuming that it is a common habit for this plant. There really is no quick and easy solution to this problem, shared by many other trees and shrubs. Usually, it is for propagation of the species, as plants create clumps of plants, all interconnected by roots, with shoots coming up to form branches, produce leaves and begin providing food to the whole plant. Live oaks and sumac are other plants that have this habit. You cannot use an herbicide to kill the shoots, because it will go to the roots of the shoot, which are also the roots of the main plant, and kill that. It's a war you probably won't win, but you can employ delaying tactics, such as regular close mowing, if the roots are coming up in lawn, and cutting off the shoots down 2 to 4 inches beneath the soil surface. See this previous answer for suggestions on appropriate tools for this operation.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Sideroxylon lanuginosum


Sideroxylon lanuginosum


Sideroxylon lanuginosum


Sideroxylon lanuginosum

 

 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Steep slope from Charlotte NC
May 03, 2012 - I live near Charlotte, NC and I have a very steep sloped area from the edge of our front yard down to the road. It's a huge eyesore mainly because it is red clay dirt and has nothing growing on it. W...
view the full question and answer

Bird-friendly plants for the Texas coast
July 13, 2012 - I'm interested in starting a native plant garden, specifically with an eye towards providing food (either from the plants or insects that are attracted to the plants) for migratory birds. However, s...
view the full question and answer

Identification of shrub from Kuala Lumpur
April 24, 2011 - I am seeing too much of shrubs used for landscaping that looks like dill, its stems are pretty woody and its leaves looks and smells like dill, are they the same? Can I consume this shrub that looks l...
view the full question and answer

Leaves falling off a hibiscus twice a year in Woodland Hills CA
October 09, 2009 - I have 8 hibiscus bushes and only 1 of them loses its leaves twice a year. Why?
view the full question and answer

Non blooming Texas Mountain Laurel from Las Vegas NV
September 04, 2012 - Hi, I live in Las Vegas, Nevada and have a Texas Laurel and have had it for 2 years and still no purple flowers on it. Why won't it bloom ? 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.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center