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

Wednesday - June 23, 2010

From: Dover, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Non-Natives, Diseases and Disorders
Title: Lantana in hanging basket not blooming in Dover PA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have a lantana Bandana trailing gold in a hanging planter in full sun. It hardly blooms. Any suggestions?

ANSWER:

Lantana 'Bandana" is apparently a selection of Lantana camara, a tropical species of Lantana. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service regards it as "introduced," or non-native to North America, while another source said it is "indigenous to the Lower Rio Grande Valley." It is not, however, in our range of expertise, nor included in our Native Plant Database. In York County, Pennsylvania, USDA Hardiness Zone 6a, you are surely growing it as an annual, because this plant is only hardy from Zones 8 to 11.  We did, however, try to find some reasons why it is not blooming. We read in this Floridata article on Lantana camara that it should be deadheaded regularly in order to keep it blooming. We also know that coming in contact with the plant and flowers without gloves, you will find it is a major irritant.   Another thing we learned about all lantanas is that too much water and fertilizer will reduce blooms. You are kind of in a Catch-22 situation there; hanging plants dry out very quickly because there is not much soil around the roots and it's hanging up in the air, so you water it pretty frequently. In terms of the fertilizer, you probably  bought the lantana in a hanging basket or transferred it to that basket in a potting soil which already had fertilizer in it. Any blooming plant that is over-fertilized will revert to more green leaves and less blooms. 

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Will mowing live oak seedlings contribute to Oak Wilt from Dripping Springs TX
June 14, 2011 - I live near Drippings Springs, TX. Will mowing live oak seedlings contribute to the spread of oak wilt?
view the full question and answer

Problem with Quercus texana (Nuttall oak) in Alabama
March 12, 2014 - I have a 3" diameter Nuttall Oak that the builder planted when building the house. Last summer I noticed that several spots on the trunk were oozing sap (vertical approximately 1.5" long by 0.5" wi...
view the full question and answer

Possible Herbicide Contamination of Soil
July 07, 2016 - My mother will be 80 this year and lives in Houston, Texas. She has a raised bed garden near her neighbors fence. It has been there for many years. She feels that he uses Roundup for his weeds near a...
view the full question and answer

Is yellow tulip poplar alive from Gilbertsville PA
March 30, 2013 - How can I tell if my yellow tulip poplar is alive? thank you
view the full question and answer

Leaves dropping on evergreen sumac in San Antonio
January 11, 2012 - I have a large evergreen sumac in my back yard that started off as a small shrub 10 years ago. This summer the leaves turned red and now have dropped off. Is the plant dead? It sent out two smaller pl...
view the full question and answer

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