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 - July 03, 2012

From: San Antonio, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Planting, Shrubs
Title: Replacing yellow bells with hibiscus from San Antonio
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Help! Will the roots of the yellow bells keep sprouting if I've removed the shrub? I'm replacing it with a hibiscus shrub. Will it do well in the same spot where the yellow bells were?

ANSWER:

Our research didn't turn up a single mention of adventitious sprouts on Tecoma stans (Yellow bells). In fact, it is frequently used as a container plant, which indicates to us there is not a root problem. You obviously know about sprouts on other plants, many kinds of trees, including oaks, which can be unsightly and even cause invasiveness. In this case, you said you dug out the roots, so we think the roots are gone.

As to your question on whether a hibiscus would do as well in the same spot. We have a question for you. Why did you take out an obviously climate friendly native plant that is showy and low water use, to replace it with an hibiscus?

There are 9 species of the family Malvavaceae (mallow), genus Hibiscus, with the word "hibiscus" in their common names that are native to Texas. Most of these natives did indicate they would survive in the same conditions as the yellow bells, but several indicated a need for acidic soils (in Central Texas, most soils are alkaline) and high water use. However, we are betting you purchased a (probably) non-native tropical hibiscus, for their showy flowers. Here is an article from Clemson Coopertive Extension on Hibiscus.

 Bottom line: We don't really have a definitive answer to your question about sprouts, and we think your hibiscus will probably do all right, particularly if you prepared the hole properly and keep it well watered. It would not be our personal choice, as the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they grow naturally. The reason for this is conservation of resources, including purchase price, water and labor.

 

From the Image Gallery


Yellow bells
Tecoma stans

Scarlet rosemallow
Hibiscus coccineus

Halberdleaf rosemallow
Hibiscus laevis

More Planting Questions

Oak leaf hydrangeas from Edwardsville IL
August 13, 2012 - Hello, I live in West Central Illinois (across the river from St. Louis) and I am considering planting several Oak leaf Hydrangea's in my yard. The location where I would like to plant them is und...
view the full question and answer

Trees starting to die in subdivision in Hutto, TX
May 31, 2012 - I live in Hutto Tx, in a subdivision where everyone has the 2 trees planted in the front yard. My trees have started to die, and I want to find out what kind they are to find a solution
view the full question and answer

Leaves on new water oak turning brown from Matagorda TX
May 30, 2013 - We had water oaks planted in January when they had no leaves. Leaves came on but are now turning brown.
view the full question and answer

Time of year to plant Texas Mountain Laurel in El Paso, TX
June 10, 2013 - When is the best time of year to plant a Mountain Laurel tree in El Paso?
view the full question and answer

Search for Silver Magnolia from Coram NY
July 11, 2012 - Hi, 20+ years ago I purchased a small tree labeled Silver Magnolia from a catalog. It was a sapling about 8 inches high when I first received it but amazing! The bloom the first year was as big as my ...
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center