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?


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

Thursday - February 01, 2007

From: austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Diagnosis of problem and treatment of damaged Cedar Elm
Answered by: Joe Marcus


Part of our mature Cedar Elm looked damaged last summer. We were advised by a landscape designer to spray it with Kocide in late January as a treatment. Is there an alternative to this? Should we have an arborist look at the tree first? We have a 2 year old house and landscape and this mature cedar elm was on the lot.


Without more specific information about the nature of the damage to your tree, we cannot give you an informed answer about its care. However, having a certified arborist look at your tree and give you specific recommendations about its treatment and care is an excellent idea.

KOCIDE® 101 is a DuPont registered fungicide/bactericide. Its active ingredient is Copper Hydroxide. KOCIDE® 101 is labeled for the treatment of Ballmoss in pecan and live oak. It is not labeled for use on cedar elm, nor are any other KOCIDE® formulations we could find. If you do find a formulation labeled for this use be sure to read, understand and follow the label directions just as you would with any pesticide.

While many people are bothered by the presence of Ballmoss in their trees, it rarely does any damage to them. In rare cases, severe infestations of Ballmoss may block enough sunlight to be detrimental to the host tree or may break some limbs due to its added weight. Ballmoss, Tillandsia recurvata is not a parasite. Rather, it is an epiphyte, meaning that it gets all of its nutritional needs from the air and rainwater. Ballmoss merely uses it's host tree as an anchor upon which to grow. In the pineapple family, it is closely related to Spanish moss, Tillandsia usneoides.


More Trees Questions

Transplanting native yaupon into yard in Lowake TX
June 08, 2010 - I have lots of wild yaupon in my pasture,can I transplant it to the yard?
view the full question and answer

red maple bark damage by squirrels
April 15, 2011 - We have two acres of land, largely covered by various oaks and cherry laurels -and, after many hours of cutting down chinese tallow trees..finally some red maples. Our problem is that we also have a s...
view the full question and answer

Time to trim oak trees in Austin
October 29, 2011 - We have several large oak trees in desperate need of a good trimming. Given that the trees have had a very stressful drought year, when would be the best time to trim them?
view the full question and answer

Fast growing native trees for firewood in New Hampshire
September 25, 2008 - Can you tell me what FAST growing tree is best for a planned crop? We plan to generate new tree crops every year. We want to use this wood for burning in indoor wood stoves and maybe in an outdoor woo...
view the full question and answer

Will catalpa roots damage a nearby swimming pool?
July 13, 2013 - Will a catalpa tree cause problems to my swimming pool? It is 8 feet away and I cut all the branches off every fall. It then grows back to about 6 feet in diameter an makes a great garden feature but ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center