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?

Share

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

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

QUESTION:

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.

ANSWER:

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

Privacy hedge for Dallas area
February 21, 2010 - We live in the Park Cities area of Dallas, and our neighbors are right on top of us. Our lot is small, but I'm looking for a privacy hedge or small tree to plant along the side of the fence. It needs...
view the full question and answer

Lifespan of pecan from Austin
February 26, 2014 - What is the lifespan of a pecan tree? I've seen several places say up to a thousand years, but I'd always thought it was closer to around 300 years. Thanks!
view the full question and answer

Should shredded Ashe juniper be composted for mulch?
May 06, 2009 - Our neighbor shredded some Texas Hill Country cedar trees. Can we use it safely as mulch? Do we need to wait until it composts some?
view the full question and answer

Hardy Tree for Kansas
March 14, 2012 - I'm hoping to find a tree that is hardy and will survive all rough seasons in Wichita, KS. The spot is in front of a northern exposure window.
view the full question and answer

Spraying paint on White Pine tree trunks
October 31, 2011 - Is there a paint that is safe to spray on a tree trunk without damaging/killing the tree? We have White Pines that have ~16" spacing without limbs & would like to 'camouflage' the bare space. If pa...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center