Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

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 Diseases and Disorders Questions

Diseased non-native red tip photinias from Richmond VA
April 08, 2014 - Our red tip trees have a while substance on the bark at the base of each tree..look like some kind of fungus or mold, but we don't know how to get rid of it. Please help.
view the full question and answer

Spots on non-native naval orange trees from Stockton CA
October 20, 2012 - I have two mature Navel Orange trees. One tree has developed spotty chlorophyl depleted areas that were not on the oranges when they were smaller. In addition, the oranges on both trees are smaller ,...
view the full question and answer

Wisteria with root rot in Flower Mound, TX
July 11, 2009 - I have a wisteria that is showing rot root from an exposed wound on the side of the base. Would like to save the tree. What can I do to fix the problem.
view the full question and answer

Problems with Savannah holly from Livingston TX
October 05, 2013 - Our Savannah Holly standards, planted in spring 2012, are now 10' tall, with 2-3" caliper trunks at the base. Some are in decline or have died. We thought the ribbons holding them to the nursery's ...
view the full question and answer

Oak leaf fall causing ivy damage
August 28, 2007 - I read the A/Q in the Austin American-Statesman Saturday, August 25, regarding the leaves falling now from the live oaks. I am experiencing the same thing, but it is the leaves of my post oaks that a...
view the full question and answer

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