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

Wednesday - May 25, 2011

From: Bartlett, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Does Mexican plum require more than one plant for successful pollination?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills


Re: Mexican plums.. Do I need to plant more than 1 to ensure proper pollination? I have always been told that commercial plums need at least 2 to pollinate properly for consistent plum production. All the Mexican plums I have seen "in the wild" have been in pastures and along creek beds where there have usually been several within a couple or hundred yards.


The Mexican Plum Prunus mexicana (Mexican plum) is the common wild plum of the forest-prairie border from Missouri to Texas. It is a monoecious species with perfect flowers ( each flower has both  stamens and pistils). Bees are the principal pollinators, and can pollinate the flowers on the same plant. If the plants are self-fertile, fruit will result. However, two of my botanical colleagues believe that this is not the case. This is also true of some hybrid varieties where it would be necessary to plant two varieties for proper pollination to occur.

I’m recommending that you plant at least two trees. This may double your work at the beginning, but it will double your pleasure and double your fun when you see those trees in blossom and harvest those juicy plums.

Check out this link for some interesting facts about bees.

Prunus mexicana

Prunus mexicana



More Trees Questions

Fertilizing oaks to produce acorns
January 16, 2012 - Will fertilizing oak trees help with acorn production?
view the full question and answer

Redwood as a Screening Tree for Santa Cruz Garden?
January 20, 2015 - I have a small yard in Santa Cruz, CA and we have to hide/distract from a power line. My husband is demanding a redwood. Is this sane? The space it will have to grow in is about 20x20. What species of...
view the full question and answer

Oak Bark Loss in Arlington, TX
May 04, 2013 - I have multiple oak trees in my yard (in north texas) that have begun to lose their bark in small chunks. I'm in the middle of the city so their are no deer and yes it's been a dry 2 years but this...
view the full question and answer

Protecting a new patio from oak roots
September 01, 2008 - Hello, I have just formed up for a new patio. I have a Live Oak tree about 2' away from the patio. It has a trunk diameter of about 10", I believe 20-25 years old. Problem: I have 2 large roots in ...
view the full question and answer

Small trees for property edge in Katy TX
April 16, 2012 - By deed restriction, I must have five trees on the side of my small suburban lot just west of Houston, TX. Due to the lot layout, the trunks are only about 8-10 feet from the house, with the trees abo...
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