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
2 ratings

Thursday - March 10, 2011

From: The Villages , FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Trees
Title: Desert willow for Florida?
Answered by: Barbara Medford


I, too, am interested in the desert willow tree. I reside in central Florida, 32162. However, Mountain States Nursery does not ship east of Texas. May I have a listing of other nurseries also. Thanks for your help.


Well, see, here's the thing. The reason that Chilopsis linearis (Desert willow) has the word "desert" in its name is because that's where it grows. Texas, and south central Texas at that, is about as far east in the United States as the Desert Willow grows natively. Follow the plant link above to see what its distribution and growing conditions are, and we think you will agree that it would be a waste of resources to attempt to grow this tree in Florida. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the areas in which those plants are growing. You can grow lots of things in Florida that would keel over in Texas; to each his own.


More Trees Questions

Mountain laurel (Sophora secundiflora) refuses to bloom
March 07, 2008 - We have a Texas Mountain Laurel that gets full sunlight, but does not bloom. It is 4-5 ft tall & 3-4 ft wide & healthy. Is there anything we can do to make it bloom next year?
view the full question and answer

Non-native, and/or invasive bermudagrass, St. Augustine and Pistache from Houston
September 24, 2012 - Our St. Augustine lawn died suddenly this summer from either chinch bugs or grub worms (or both?), and a multitude of weeds and native Bermuda have taken over the area. Now that the weather has cooled...
view the full question and answer

Tahitian gardenias (Gardenia taitensis) salt and wind resistance in Hawaii
February 03, 2006 - Are Tahitian Gardenias salt tolerant? We live on a rocky coastline in Hawaii and we get a lot of salt spray.
view the full question and answer

Controlling seeding of non- native, invasive Paulownia from Fayetteville TN
August 17, 2012 - My husband planted a Paulownia tree against my advice about eight years ago. This summer it has huge seed pods. How do I keep the seeds from invading the wooded area of our property?
view the full question and answer

How close to a female tree will a male Possumhaw Holly need to be planted to ensure pollination in Plano, TX?
April 01, 2010 - I would like to plant a female Possumhaw Holly in my yard. Does a male need to be planted nearby in order for the female to have berries? If so, how close must the male tree be located?
view the full question and answer

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