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

Monday - August 25, 2014

From: Waco, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Shrubs, Trees
Title: Problems with a Cercis (Redbud)
Answered by: Anne Van Nest

QUESTION:

Half of my redbud tree is pooped out looking. On two places on the bark are areas where a few layers of bark have pulled back. In these areas there are white growths.

ANSWER:

Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories has a good online factsheet on Redbuds (Cercis canadensis) that might help with your tree problems. If your problem is progressing and this is a valuable tree, call a certified arborist to come take a look at your tree.

Here's some of what the Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories said about redbud problems ... Cankers are the most serious disease problem of redbud. These fungi infect major limbs and the trunk cutting off the flow of nutrients. Most canker fungi require that the tree be under stress and have an open wound for infection. The most common stress factor is summer drought. Verticillium wilt is another disease that produces very similar symptoms to cankers.
Both of these diseases are first seen as single limb dieback that may spread to the entire tree. Verticillium infects roots and spreads to the stem. Several leaf spot fungi including anthracnose attack this species especially during wet springs.


Old trees are often attacked by wood boring insects. These insects are first noticed from the frass that accumulates at the base or the tree or sap oozing from holes in the bark. A number of leaf-feeding insects are also attracted to redbud. These include tent caterpillar,leafhoppers, treehoppers, leafrollers, weevils and other caterpillars. Branches are often attacked by scale insects including greedy, oleander, leucanium and terrapin.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Eastern redbud
Cercis canadensis

Eastern redbud
Cercis canadensis

Eastern redbud
Cercis canadensis

Eastern redbud
Cercis canadensis

Eastern redbud
Cercis canadensis

More Trees Questions

Protecting storm-damaged pecan and black walnut trees in TX
June 29, 2015 - Several trees on our property in northeast Texas were uprooted by a tornado. A pecan tree with a circumference greater than 93 inches was carried to the ground. Although it is completely horizontal,...
view the full question and answer

Protecting base of Texas Madrone tree in Austin
May 08, 2011 - 3 years ago, I successfully transplanted a 1-gallon Texas Madrone on the north side of an Ashe Juniper. The Madrone is thriving but the juniper, which has been a great "nurse", is dying. I am lookin...
view the full question and answer

Cypress poisonous to livestock from Arlington, TN
December 06, 2012 - Are green giant cypress poisonous to livestock?
view the full question and answer

How do you determine male persimmon seedlings from the females?
May 11, 2013 - I have got new persimmon seedlings about 3 inches tall this spring, and am wondering if there is any way to tell male from female at this young stage? I just don't want to plant 20 or 40 seedlings an...
view the full question and answer

Are Mesquite (Prosopis) pods safe for dogs to eat?
June 15, 2009 - are pods from mesquite trees posionus to dogs if they chew or eat them?
view the full question and answer

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