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

Saturday - September 24, 2011

From: Atlanta, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Watering, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Drought stressed wooly butterflybush in Atlanta, TX
Answered by: Brigid & Larry Larson

QUESTION:

My butterfly bush is dead looking from the drought. Do you think there is a chance it just went dormant and will return next year. I am still putting water on it. I believe it is a white wooly butterfly bush. We live in Northeast Texas and like most I am concerned about my natives as well as my non-natives surviving.

ANSWER:

Yes, even natives are having a hard time in this drought. 

I think there is a good chance that it has gone dormant and I would hope it will reappear!  When I read the profile for Buddleja marrubiifolia (Woolly butterflybush), it noted that it is drought-tolerant and suitable for xeriscaping, which is good news; but at the same time, in the maintenance comments, it was recommended that you should avoid complete soil dryness, which is awfully hard in the conditions we have this year.

There are some other Mr Smarty Plants answers that may be of assistance to your concerns.  Many discussions hold that Buddleja marrubiifolia (Woolly butterflybush) is only native to far southwest Texas, so it's likely your White wooly butterflybush is a cultivar.  This discussion is about pruning drought stressed butterflybushes and this one about finding the true native version.

 

From the Image Gallery


Woolly butterflybush
Buddleja marrubiifolia

Woolly butterflybush
Buddleja marrubiifolia

Woolly butterflybush
Buddleja marrubiifolia

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Companion planting with heartleaf skullcap from Arlington TX
April 24, 2011 - What can I plant with heart-leaf skullcap when it goes dormant in the summer?
view the full question and answer

Eriogonum spergulinum, wild buckwheat
March 21, 2008 - Do you have any information on the wildflower Eriogonum spergulinum???
view the full question and answer

Rabbit-proof Plants for Florida Swimming Pool Area
February 22, 2016 - I plan on planting white star jasmine and purple bocouilla plants around a south-facing swimming pool in Naples, Florida. I was told rabbits might eat them which we do have. Should I be concerned, and...
view the full question and answer

Poolside plants for East Texas
June 18, 2015 - What are the best plants, shrubs, ornamental trees, etc. for poolside planting in East Texas?
view the full question and answer

Grass for Seattle Arboretum
May 20, 2012 - I am writing to you on behalf of the Arboretum at South Seattle Community College Arboretum. I am interested in Panicum virgatum Switch Grass as a plant for a very heavy clay garden in our Arboretum a...
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