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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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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!

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Wednesday - June 06, 2012

From: Elmendorf, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Rare or Endangered Plants, Propagation, Trees
Title: Propogating snowbells from Elmendorf TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Is it possible to propagate Styrax platanifolius and Halesia diptera from cuttings? If yes, what is the process?

ANSWER:

Styrax platanifolius (Sycamoreleaf snowbell) - native to Bexar County

From our webpage on this plant:

"A shrub or small tree with dark gray bark. Should not be disturbed. Rare and endangered. Leaves broadly ovate to almost circular, up to 4 inches long, with smooth margins and a broad tip, or with a terminal lobe and a lateral one on each side of it, and a lobed to rounded base. Flowers in small clusters, drooping, with 5 white petals up to 5/8 inch long, suggesting little bells, opening in April and May. Fruit a rounded capsule about 3/8 inch in diameter, with a short tip, the base covered with a remnant (calyx) of the flower."

One of our jobs is the protection and preservation of rare and endangered plants, so we will pass on this one.

Halesia diptera (Two-wing silverbell) - native to East Texas

"Description: Cuttings are difficult to root; those that do root should not be transplanted until growth flushes the following spring. Seeds require a period of after-ripening followed by cold, moist stratification."

 

From the Image Gallery


Sycamore-leaf snowbell
Styrax platanifolius

Two-wing silverbell
Halesia diptera

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