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 - November 08, 2011

From: Georgetown, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Trees
Title: Are brown junipers (Juniperus ashei) dead?
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

If the cedar/junipers in our area are brown, will they ever come back green? Or just clear them out as dead. There are many of them due to the drought. Thank you.

ANSWER:

Unfortunately, your Juniperus ashei (Ashe juniper) are most likely dead.   Deciduous trees can react to stress by losing their leaves earlier than usual and then re-leaf in the spring or even before spring if the situation causing the stress is alleviated.  For instance, this summer during the scorching temperatures and no rain the Juglans nigra (Black walnut) in my yard and the Carya illinoinensis (Pecan) in my neighbor's yard both had most of their leaves turn yellow and fall, but after the 2-inch rain in September they produced new green leaves.  Brown evergreens, however, are probably dead evergreens.  However, you can test them by bending the smaller branches.  If the branches are flexible and full of sap, they’re still alive.  If they’re brittle and dry, they’re dead and won’t come back.  Some of the “brown” junipers that are still alive will put out new growth in the spring, but it will be from the tips of branches.  If the browned junipers do survive, they’re likely to be unattractive for quite some time.  That might be reason enough to remove them. 
 

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Why are my Rock Roses dying?
September 22, 2014 - I planted several rock roses last fall. This spring they have grown wonderfully, but all of a sudden, one shriveled and died. I took it out and replaced it. Now, another is starting to shrivel. It ...
view the full question and answer

Decline of sheared dwarf hollies from Rockwall TX
May 31, 2014 - I have 20 year old established dwarf yaupon hollies in front of the house that I trim every year and shape the same. This year the new growth that was 2 1/2 " long I noticed the new leaves were curli...
view the full question and answer

Esperanza freezing back in Highlands, TX
April 16, 2011 - I have an 3 yr. old Esperanza that froze the last two yrs. but grew back each spring. This spring after getting about 2 ft. the leaves at the bottom began turning brown at the edges and now seems to...
view the full question and answer

Grasshopper-resistant landscape plants?
May 20, 2009 - We have a ton of grasshoppers in our area. I would like to plant bushes and flowers that the grasshoppers will not eat. Can you suggest any??
view the full question and answer

Decline in willow tree in West Virginia
June 15, 2008 - I planted a willow tree about three years ago and it was progressing just beautifully with full leaves this spring in a nice green color. We staked it back about three weeks so it would grow straight...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center