Contact Us Host an Event 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

Tuesday - May 13, 2014

From: Junction, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Rare or Endangered Plants, Diseases and Disorders, Transplants, Trees
Title: Problems with transplanted Texas Madrones from Junction TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We planted 3 little Texas madrones last year 9 - 12 inches high. 2 of them seem to have some kind of black blight along the edges of the leaves that I don't think was the result of our late freezes. Is there something you can suggest that I should look for or something that I might can do to salvage them? They are in well drained places, though Heaven knows it has not rained. They are each within a 10 foot radius of cedar/juniper trees. Thank you.

ANSWER:

First of all, we very much hope you did not obtain your 3 Arbutus xalapensis (Texas madrone) trees by digging them up in the wild, and if you did, we hope you did so with the permission of the landowner.

Second, this USDA  Plant Profile Map does not show madrones growing natively in Kimble County but it does in adjacent Gillespie and Kerr Counties.

Third, from the US Forest Service Index of Species on Texas Madrone: "Texas madrone is listed as an endangered species by the Texas Organization for Endangered Species."

In answer to your question, we can easily identify the problem as transplant shock. We are going to list several previous answer links indicating how difficult this plant is to propagate and to transplant. We don't know what time of year you transplanted the little trees or what care they got after they were moved, but we recommend transplanting woody plants (trees and shrubs) only in cool weather, December and January in Texas.

Previous question from Dripping Springs, TX

Previous question from Belton TX

Previous answer from Utopia TX

Obviously, we could go on and on. There may very well be insects, climactic problems, soil, sunlight, who knows? We have nothing to offer as a solution.

 

From the Image Gallery


Texas madrone
Arbutus xalapensis

Texas madrone
Arbutus xalapensis

Texas madrone
Arbutus xalapensis

Texas madrone
Arbutus xalapensis

More Transplants Questions

Transplanting bluebonnets to garden from Columbus TX
January 30, 2014 - Is it possible to transplant bluebonnets from pasture to garden and if so when is the best time to do this? Thank you
view the full question and answer

Transplanting adventitious shoots of a mountain laurel in San Antonio
August 20, 2009 - Is it possible to transplant branches (shoots) growing from a mountain laurel that was chopped down? Some are two years old and several feet tall (but not yet blooming) and some as small as a foot. ...
view the full question and answer

Transplant shock in Dakota mock vervain
July 23, 2007 - We just planted some Verbena bipinnatifida in our back yard and when we planted it, it had purple flowers on it but now they've all dried up. We live in central Colorado and thought this plant was fa...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting non-native bougainvillea in Florida
February 10, 2009 - Hi, My neighbor has two established bougainvillea that he is giving me..I just have to dig them up and not kill them..what is the best way to dig up and transplant them?
view the full question and answer

Fertilization of recently-transplanted yucca
January 26, 2009 - I planted a soft tip yucca a week ago, the spineless type. I was doing a landscaping job, it was dug up, left for a week without any dirt around the roots, and when the customer did not want it, I pl...
view the full question and answer

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