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

Friday - May 14, 2010

From: Selma, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Texas fan ash draining sap in Selma TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a 3-year-old Texas Fan Ash tree that has recently begun to drain sap. Should I be concerned? If yes, what can I do to save the tree? Thank You!!

ANSWER:

From a previous Mr. Smarty Plants answer:

'Fantex' is a cultivar of Fraxinus velutina (Arizona ash). Rather, Fantex is a "sport", or mutant form, of ash that was selected and developed by Fanick's Nursery in San Antonio for its different leaf type—its leaves are smooth; whereas the regular F. velutina leaves are somewhat fuzzy on the underside. There is, however, great variety in the texture of the leaves of this species. Additionally, Fantex apparently has a thicker leaf and is sterile (producing no seeds). It is always grafted onto Fraxinus velutina root stock according to the Pima Arizona Cooperative Extension.

Because the "Fantex' is a cultivar of a native plant, we have no information on it in our Native Plant Database. We can tell you that the parent of this cultivar, Arizona Ash, grows naturally in Texas only in the Big Bend area of far West Texas, according to this USDA Plant Profile. This is a somewhat different environment from what you have in Selma, in Central Texas. You didn't say if there was a wound from which the sap was draining, or if it was just a general drip all over the tree. We know that the parent tree is very susceptible to borers. We have been hearing recently about the threat of the Emerald Ash Borer to native ash trees. We found a couple of websites on this pest: USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and Wisconsin's Emerald Ash Borer Information Source. Since we are gardeners, not plant pathologists nor entomologists, we recommend you contact the Texas A&M AgriLIFE Extension office in Bexar, Comal or Guadalupe counties for more information. 

Beyond that, you should consider the environment and the care your tree is receiving. Again, speaking only of the Velvet Ash component of your tree, here is a site from gardenguides.com on How to Take Care of the Arizona Ash Tree.  

Fraxinus texensis (Texas ash) is a different species altogether. You can read descriptions of F. velutina and F. texensis from Florida Cooperative Extension Service and compare them.


Fraxinus velutina

Fraxinus texensis

 


 

 

More Trees Questions

Is Ashe juniper (Juniperus ashei) really native to the Texas Hill Country?
October 12, 2010 - I had heard that the Ashe Juniper was not native to the hill country or even Texas. Is this true? What is their history? They sure make it hard for the elms and oaks to thrive. We have decided to re...
view the full question and answer

Life expectancy for Carolina buckthorn (Frangula caroliniana)
February 25, 2008 - Someone recently told me that Carolina buckthorn only lives 4-5 years and I'm wondering if that is true. I had a nice one (on Blackland) that died suddenly in its fourth or fifth year, during the dr...
view the full question and answer

Dead portions on oak tree in Hutchinson KS
August 22, 2011 - I have an oak tree on the property I just moved into. One tree is healthy, the other has a dead side or almost dead. It did have some new green leaves on the dead branches but not many. What should...
view the full question and answer

Pruning Texas madrone trees from Utopia TX
August 19, 2012 - I have a number of large Texas Madrone trees on my ranch in Utopia Texas. A few of them have dead limbs and I was wondering whether I should cut off the dead limbs or just leave the tree alone. I wa...
view the full question and answer

Trees blooming white in East Tennessee in April
April 07, 2010 - What kind of tree is blooming now, 4\6\10 in the mountains of east TN. They have white blooms?
view the full question and answer

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