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

Tuesday - December 11, 2012

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Seeds and Seeding
Title: Agarita and Mexican Buckeye not flowering or fruiting.
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

The Greenbelt behind our home has a ton of agarita and Mexican buckeye, but they never bloom or berry. The pigeon berry is very happily doing both all year. Any suggestions for helping the agerita and Mexican buckeye? THANKS.

ANSWER:

Both Agarita (Mahonia trifoliolata) and Mexican Buckeye (Ungnadia speciosa) are typically very reliable for flowering and fruiting, so you're seeing something a bit unusual.  Both species flower early in spring, so it's possible cold weather could play a role in them failing to flower some years, but it is doubtful freezing would kill the developing flower buds of these plants every year.  Of course, if there are no flowers, there naturally be no fruit following.

Most often, lack of flowering is an indication of too little light, in other words, too much shade.  We know of no other factor that would likely be the cause of the problem.

 

More Seeds and Seeding Questions

How to get rid of plants spreading fluffy seeds
July 27, 2008 - I live in Blaine, MN next to a Lake. The "buffer zones" next to the lake are filled with native grasses, weeds & wildflowers. We are trying to identify a plant that blooms July with lavender flowe...
view the full question and answer

When to stop mowing Habiturf for seeding from Austin
November 14, 2012 - I planted a native Habiturf lawn in my back yard last spring/summer and it is doing very well. The how-to mentions allowing the turf to seed out once per year to help maintain the lawn. Is there a bes...
view the full question and answer

Keeping a Texas Madrone alive from Belton TX
October 01, 2012 - I have found a supplier of a Texas Madrone and have been wanting to grow one ever since our family vacation to Big Bend NP. My question is how do you have success with this tree? Many people say it is...
view the full question and answer

Plant ID from Brick, New Jersey
September 07, 2013 - I live in Brick, New Jersey. I planted some wildflower seed from an assorted packet. There is a very tall, thick center stem with orange flowers. I'd like to send photo but don't know how.
view the full question and answer

Annual ryegrass and Habiturf from Austin
October 31, 2013 - We've decided to put Habiturf in our freshly cleared back yard that was overgrown with sticky burs and crabgrass, but now that it is fall, would you recommend putting in a cover crop of annual ryegra...
view the full question and answer

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