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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 is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Thursday - July 11, 2013

From: Spring Branch, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Watering, Trees
Title: Watering a Montezuma Cypress in Spring Branch, TX
Answered by: Larry Larson

QUESTION:

Live near San Antonio, and have a Montesuma Cypress, 15 ft tall. Great soil. Planted in April, should I keep it moist??? The foliage is getting brown.

ANSWER:

You should most certainly keep Taxodium mucronatum (Montezuma bald cypress) moist!   I checked its plant record and it said that the Montezuma Cypress is:

Large, needle-leaf, aquatic tree with tall, straight trunk and broad crown of spreading branches and drooping twigs, evergreen or nearly so. Trunk enlarged at base with ridges above; sometimes small knees project from submerged roots.

And for growing conditions it gave:
Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Wet

    Now, in a more general sense, here is a set of YouTube videos on watering young trees and also some previous Mr Smarty Plants question/answers.  These are aimed at trees that have much more modest water needs, so the routines mentioned here are good, but you should consider this a minimum for a Taxodium mucronatum (Montezuma bald cypress)!  You should plan that this one will need a lot of water to be successful!

YouTube Instruction Videos:
Watering Young Trees 
Tree Watering Tips for Texas  

Mr Smarty Plants Question/Answer Pairs:
Georgetown, TX
Live Oaks in Katy, Texas - Note this paragraph:

"To water, especially in the very hot weather we are experiencing right now, push your hose deep into the (hopefully) soft soil around the roots and let it slowly drip until water comes to the surface. Unless you are getting frequent rains, do this twice a week. 

 

From the Image Gallery


Montezuma bald cypress
Taxodium mucronatum

Montezuma bald cypress
Taxodium mucronatum

Montezuma bald cypress
Taxodium mucronatum

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