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?

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
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

Tuesday - June 07, 2011

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Pests, Watering, Trees
Title: Watering oaks in Houston, TX.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Our yard (Real County, TX.) has many oak trees. We never water these trees, but I wonder if you recommend watering during this extreme drought. The trees look very stressed and are covered in ball moss. If we remove the moss, the limbs break off which I think makes the tree vulnerable to oak wilt. Suggestions?

ANSWER:

Lets start with the Oak Wilt. You didn’t say what kind of oaks you have, but as you probably know, some oaks are more susceptible to oak wilt than others. Here is a link to help you become more familiar with oak wilt.

The ball moss Tillandsia recurvata (Small ball moss) is not causing any harm to the tree even though it is unsightly. I would just leave it alone until the weather gets cooler in the fall. This previously answered question has tips for controlling ball moss.

For information about caring for trees in the current drought, see this previously answered question.




 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Problems with Green Cloud cenizo in Tucson, AZ
June 15, 2009 - I have a large number of Green Cloud Texas Rangers on my property. I water all very consistently, once a week and most of these are around 5-6 ft tall and 15 years or more old. We've only had a few i...
view the full question and answer

Growth on miniature palm in Los Gatos. CA
October 01, 2009 - I think that my miniature palm is infested with some sort of bug or fungus. Last night it looked fine but this morning there was a large bright yellow fuzzy looking growth on the trunk. Any input wo...
view the full question and answer

Coreopsis failing to bloom in Sonora CA
August 04, 2009 - My Coreopsis buds form and then die. Very few open. The plants are two and three years old, in a clay type soil. Is it possible they're getting too much water, and that is whats making the buds die ...
view the full question and answer

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

Palm trees turning orange in Miami
May 24, 2010 - Why are my palm trees turning orange?
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