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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.

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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.

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Monday - April 02, 2012

From: Georgetown, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Trees
Title: Mountain Laurels are dying in Georgetown, TX.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Ten year old Mountain Laurels both last year and this spring have had entire branches turn brown just after blooming this Feb. Round Rock Arborist suggested I contact you. Last year one of my laurels had to be removed after the entire tree died. Two others near by did not have problems. This year in another area the same things is happening. I can send pictures if you will send me direct email link.

ANSWER:

Texas mountain Laurel Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain laurel) is a spectacular plant for the Central Texas landscape, and one of its features that is often touted is that fact that it is generally disease and pest free (aggie-horticulture). Then reality steps in.

An internet search brought up this San Antonio Express News article which isn’t too encouraging. Further searching revealed this previously answered question that offers some suggestions for a course of action.
I would suggest contacting the folks at the Williamson County office of Texas AgriLife Extension for help closer to home.


 

From the Image Gallery


Texas mountain laurel
Sophora secundiflora

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