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

Thursday - June 16, 2011

From: San Marcos, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Deer Resistant
Title: Not deer eating the Eve's necklace in San Marcos TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Dear Mr SP, Re: the Eve's necklace being eaten. I'm so sorry that I didn't tell you in my original question which you were kind enough to answer with the speed of lightening, but I am on the East side of I35, in a new development and, believe it or not, we have NO deer. They just haven't discovered us yet. The tree is very small, less than 2 feet. I think it is a bug of some kind but can't see anything.

ANSWER:

The reason we were so fast is that we answer very similar questions frequently, and just referenced one of them. We knew it was too easy. The only thing we can think of that would make off with most or all of the leaves on a plant is the leaf-cutter ant. Please read this previous answer, which was from San Antonio; Hays County is close enough to Bexar County that they could have spread there.

Ordinarily, when insects are the cause, they are things like spider mites or aphids that pierce the leaf and suck juices out of them. They make unsightly holes, and can eventually do a lot of damage to the plant, but they don't eat the whole leaf. In fact, they live on the leaves they are sucking on, and raise their children. If you see any ants, they are farming the bugs, collecting the "honeydew" exuded by the bugs. The cutter ant, however, although also a farmer, takes as big a chunk of leaf as he can carry home to the tunnels where the queen is laying eggs. They usually work at night, which might explain why you have seen no bugs. The answer we have linked you to has more information.

Since we are neither entomologists nor plant pathologists, that about empties our stock of wisdom about your problem. As we did in the linked answer, we suggest you contact the AgriLIFE Extension Office for Hays County, and see if they have had other reports of similar problems.

 

More Deer Resistant Questions

Deer Resistance and Erosion Control for St. Louis County MO
January 03, 2014 - I am looking for deer and rabbit resistant native plants for erosion control on a steep ravine slope with part sun and part shade in St. Louis County MO.
view the full question and answer

Plant for deep shade in Pennsylvania
April 09, 2013 - Hi! I am landscaping our house and trying to use only plants that provide seasonal benefit to bees, butterflies, birds etc. not the deer though. My question is that I have a fairly steep slope of abou...
view the full question and answer

Specifications for a property in Corning CA
March 29, 2012 - Drought resistant, deer resistant, low growing (ground cover), and shade tolerant request: I am looking for a variety of species that not only fit the above preferences, but also a few other things. ...
view the full question and answer

Do white-tailed deer consume King Ranch bluestem?
October 25, 2013 - Will white-tail deer in central Texas consume King Ranch bluestem ?
view the full question and answer

Deer-resistant plants for wildlife in Margaretville NY
April 18, 2010 - We have a 60 degree bank behind a recently completed retaining wall that is mostly rocky with a light topsoil. We are going to put down grass just to keep the topsoil in place, but someone suggested ...
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