Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

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

Saturday - October 20, 2012

From: Stockton, CA
Region: California
Topic: Non-Natives, Diseases and Disorders, Pests, Edible Plants, Trees
Title: Spots on non-native naval orange trees from Stockton CA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have two mature Navel Orange trees. One tree has developed spotty chlorophyl depleted areas that were not on the oranges when they were smaller. In addition, the oranges on both trees are smaller , by half, than normal for this time of year. Tanglo and Lemon on both sides show no sign of this problem..It really looks like something is eating small areas of chlorophyl.

ANSWER:

Citrus x sinensis means it's not from around here, not even in California. Orange trees probably originated in Southeast Asia and were cultivated in China by 2500 BC. We always want to know where a plant is native, because that helps us know in what soils, rainfall and climate it grows well. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, home of Mr. Smarty Plants, is dedicated to the growth, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to areas where those plants grow naturally.

Even though we will have no information in our Native Plant Database on oranges, we will try to find some websites that might give you some clues:

University of Florida Extension Citrus Black Spot Symptoms in Brazil.

San Francisco Chronicle Citrus Fruit with Black Spots

To get information on a plant that is not necessarily native but does grow locally, we suggest you contact the University of California Cooperative Extension Office in San Joaquin County.

 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Best for Austin-non-native loquat or kumquat?
May 04, 2010 - I was wondering which tree is suited better in the Austin,TX, area, the Loquat or the Kumquat, do they lose their leaves in the winter and do they bear fruits?
view the full question and answer

Secretions of fluid from crepe myrtles
June 09, 2008 - On my crepe myrtle tree I have dozens of 1/2-inch-long narrow bugs that seem to secrete tiny drops of fluid. They appear on the branches of the tree. Are these harmful to the tree? Do I need to do ...
view the full question and answer

Care of non-native house plant
December 09, 2007 - Please let me know how to keep a dieffenbachia plant healthy and growing. I notice some leaves turn yellow. I water them once a week and keep it on the windowsill with some sunlight. Should I be do...
view the full question and answer

Non-native hylocereus undatus for Austin
February 24, 2012 - Can we plant Hylocereus (Dragon Fruit) here in Austin, TX? We are going to have a large xeriscape bed and want to know what all we can put in it. We are new to Texas so we have no clue what grows here...
view the full question and answer

Non-native Coconut palms and Christmas palms in Merritt Island, FL
August 10, 2010 - Last winter the coconut and Christmas Palms all suffered. I have coconuts to plant, but can't get them to put forth a sprout, and eventually grow into a tree. I have put some in the ground half-way....
view the full question and answer

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