Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Wednesday - May 02, 2012

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Planting, Trees
Title: Live oak wobbling in the ground from Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a live oak that was not planted firmly in the ground by the subdivision builder's landscapers. The entire tree is wobbly to the touch and it has come close to dying as result of windy conditions. It does, however, grow very slowly. I'm concerned that as it gains height, it could be blown over. Should we cut it down, or let it continue to grow?

ANSWER:

This is definitely a serious problem and not anything we could advise you on. You should have a licensed arborist look at the tree, and see if there is anything that could be changed. You could probably dig it out, move it to a bigger, well-prepared hole and hope for the best. However, you shouldn't do that until between November and February because of the danger of Oak Wilt. Plus, quite frankly, we think the tree would die of transplant shock, anyway. The Live Oak is a valuable tree, but the threat of a tree falling on a person or house or car is not worth taking chances.

 

More Planting Questions

Flowers under pine trees from Elkhart Indiana
May 02, 2013 - I have a number of pine trees at the back of my lot and would like to plant flowers under the tree. What can I plant?
view the full question and answer

When do you put out bluebonnet seeds in Bastrop, TX?
April 17, 2012 - When do you put out bluebonnet seeds?? I hear fall but don't the seeds pop out of dried up plants in early summer?
view the full question and answer

Growing Chile Pequin Indoors
December 09, 2015 - About a year ago I visited your page and as a result I planted 8 seeds in spring 2015 from a large Chile Pequin plant that came up wild in my Cedar Park home near Austin. The last harvest was late su...
view the full question and answer

Finding a source of Straggler daisy
October 14, 2015 - I've decided on Straggler daisy but am having trouble finding it. It would be perfect for me. Do I have to wait until next Spring for it to show up? Can it be ordered through a nursery or a landscape...
view the full question and answer

What to do with 200 yucca seedlings in Sandusky, OH?
August 31, 2013 - I have over two hundred 3 month old yucca seedlings from my last yr. Yucca plants. I soaked the the seeds for 24 hrs. planted them in trays and now they are abt. 2 inch tall. My question is, should I ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.