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
14 ratings

Monday - October 01, 2007

From: Sherman, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seeds and Seeding, Trees
Title: Does Chilopsis linearis, var.Bubba produce seed pods? No.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

We have a really beautiful 2-year old Bubba, Desert Willow. It is already about 12 feet tall. I really have two questions. One does the Bubba form the seed pods like the other types of Desert Willows? I have not seen any seed pods yet and this is the second fall. And question two is: It has a couple of low growing branches. Will they move up as the tree grows taller or should I prune them? I want a tree shaped Desert Willow and I really do not like those low branches, but if they moved up with the growth of the tree, I would like them. Thank you for your help.

ANSWER:

Desert Willow (Chilopsis linearis) is not a true Willow (see genus Salix) although it has willow-like leaves.
The variety Bubba was originated by Paul Cox of the San Antonio Botanical Garden, and has proved to be a favorite among landscapers because of its drought tolerance and deer resistance. I have found only one reference regarding the production of seed pods by Bubba, and the Williamson County Landscape Center says Bubba does not produce seed pods.

The low branches will not move up the tree because of the way trees and other flowering plants grow. New growth is occuring at the tip of the plant, and once a branch is established, it will maintain its position on the plant relative to the ground, neither moving up or down. So if you don't like the low branches, go ahead and prune them.

 

From the Image Gallery


Desert willow
Chilopsis linearis

More Trees Questions

Propagating Quercus agrifolia (Coast Live Oak)
November 08, 2013 - I am a gardener for the city of San Francisco. I am just curious about the best way to prepare an acorn from Quercus agrifolia for planting. I have heard many ideas about using sandpaper and microwavi...
view the full question and answer

Life expectancy of Desert Willow in Tucson, AZ
April 06, 2013 - What is the life expectancy of a Chilopsis linearis under ideal circumstances.
view the full question and answer

Insect attack on bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa)
May 30, 2008 - Something is attacking the bur oak that was planted in 2007. Insects are not on the leaves, but the edges of some leaves look chewed back. Others look brown around the edges. Do you have any idea w...
view the full question and answer

Plant ID of unknown purchased plant from Boise ID
June 24, 2012 - Hi! I bought a tree that the sales person didnt know what it was. I thought it was a cherry tree and now after about 3-4 yrs I know it is but..How do I know if it is an ornamental tree or real fruit t...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for plants for a bird/small wildlife refuge in Wichita Co, TX.
August 26, 2011 - With our continuing drought in North Texas, I'm planning to transform my small backyard into a bird/small wildlife "refuge". What types of native plants and grasses can I plant in dry, hot Wichita ...
view the full question and answer

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