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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

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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Sunday - June 17, 2012

From: Elgin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Pests, Shrubs
Title: Problems with non-native yellow lantana from Elgin TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Why do my yellow lantana buds turn brown and do not open fully? The sprinkler system does not spray onto the lantana.

ANSWER:

While there are 4 lantanas native to North America and 3 native to Texas, none of them are yellow, which may mean that you have the hybrid Lantana camara 'New Gold', which is not considered native. Our focus is on plants native not only to North America but also to the areas in which the plant grows natively. Since you live in Elgin, you might have purchased Lantana urticoides (Texas lantana) from the Wildflower Center Plant Sale, but it is not yellow. The other two native to Texas are Lantana achyranthifolia (Brushland shrubverbena) and Lantana canescens (Hammock shrubverbena).

Although this sounds like an insect problem, possibly whiteflies, it also could have to do with how much sun the plants are getting. The natives require full sun, which is 6 hours or more of sun a day, and are low water plants.

From Texas A&M University Extension Lantana and Verbena - How to Combat Insects and Mite Pests.

Pictures of Lantana camara 'New Gold"

 

From the Image Gallery


Texas lantana
Lantana urticoides

Brushland shrubverbena
Lantana achyranthifolia

Hammock shrubverbena
Lantana canescens

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