Shiny evergreen leaves and drooping clusters of lavender flowers make Texas mountain laurel popular in warm regions. Choose a planting site in an area that gets full sun. What is a Texas mountain laurel? Try Prime EN Hello, Sign in Account & Lists Sign in Account & Lists Returns & Orders Try Prime Cart. It is known for its attractive, But the breathtaking bouquet is just one of the charms of this Texas native, which is hardy to USDA Hardiness Zone 7b. But, Texas being Texas, we had to stamp it with our own name, of course. Those at the northern limits of mountain laurel cold hardiness can develop leaf scorch. Texas Mountain Laurel is a native evergreen shrub that can be trained as a multi-trunked small tree. Description. However, in spite of the name, they do not contain the hallucinogenic alkaloid mescaline, found in the peyote cactus. Texas mountain laurel grows in limestone soils in Central and Southwest Texas and to 5000 feet in the Chisos and Davis Mountains. Plant of the Week. It is also called Mescal Bean. 20’ Spread 10’. Slow-growing shrub to 10 to 15 feet tall and wide; to 25 feet high, 15 to 20 feet wide as a tree. Silk Floss Tree (Chorisia speciosa): Evergreen that likes full sun and grows to 30 feet. Bury the seed about 1/2 inch deep. Also known as mescal bean, the Texas mountain laurel (Dermatophyllum secundiflorum syn. Have you grown Texas mountain laurel? Gardeners looking for a tough evergreen tree or shrub that perfumes the air each spring with a floral scent that stops traffic should consider Texas mountain laurel. You can also create a tall screen with these, by planting several in a row and letting them bush out. If you’d like to start with seeds, you can get packets of five seeds via Amazon. A former garden editor for a daily newspaper in Austin, Texas, Gretchen Heber goes through entirely too many pruners and garden gloves in a year’s time. Questions about the purple-blue blooms hanging in clusters and having the wonderful scent of grape chewing gum have begun! Sign up for our newsletter. While it can reach 30’ tall if given lots of water, it usually holds in the more manageable and desirable 10’ to 15’ range and gets about 10’ wide. All Texas Mountain Laurel, 10 seeds, Sophora secundiflora, fragrant blooms, xeriscape, desert plant, zones 7 to 11, perfect hedge, very purple SmartSeedsEmporium From shop SmartSeedsEmporium Mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia) is flowering broadleaf evergreen shrub with a multi-stemmed growth habit. TEXAS MOUNTAIN LAUREL. However, if you’re patient, you can grow a Texas mountain laurel from seed. Common names include Texas mountain laurel, Texas mescalbean, frijolito, and frijolillo. These flowers eventually give way to thick seed pods Silver Peso generally does not grow as big as the Texas Mountain Laurel, and because of this, is preferred by some who are wishing to use it for Xeriscaping. Space Texas mountain laurel saplings 10 to 12 feet apart, and water regularly during the first year so that the soil is constantly moist but never sodden. D. secundiflorum takes it all and comes out smelling like a… glass of grape Kool-Aid? Learn all … Lousy soil? Mine is about six feet tall now, after 5 years of loving care and this spring for the first time it came into full bloom. There are very few rules in gardening, but perhaps the most important one is to work within your zone. 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Note that proximity to buildings, bodies of water, and other plant-related factors such as excessive vigor may be mitigating factors in determining whether a plant survives at a given temperature. Famed TV chef Emeril Lagasse used to lament the non-invention of “smell-o-vision.” I wish for “smell-o-website” so I could share with you the heavenly scent produced by the pretty purple flowers of these shrubs. Commonly grown as a shrub, it also can be pruned into a small tree. Last updated: March 9, 2020 at 17:16 pm. Its lush purple flowers have a strong grapelike fragrance that permeates the area around the plant. It produces purple flowers that have a grape jelly scent which permeates the garden. Spacing 8’-15’. Texas mountain laurel makes a lovely specimen tree or shrub, which is primarily how I see them grown in Austin. The school profile includes the school type, level, status, number of students, teachers and student-teacher ratio. The Texas Mountain Laurel plant would not be winter hardy in zone 6--NW Arkansas--it won't tolerate temperatures below 10. If you’re collecting seeds, pick the pods when they’re still mostly green but just starting to turn gray. fragrant flowers and its extreme drought hardiness. They can be planted in full sun and tolerate partial shade as well. But a few tricks may provide faster results, if you’d like to grow some seedlings for transplant into the garden. Posted on March 17, 2015 by Jay White. should be kept away from children and pets. You can try soaking the seeds in warm water for 2-3 days, changing the water regularly to keep it tepid. so-FORE-uh se-kune-di-FLOOR-uh. Keep reading to learn more Texas Mountain Laurel is a large evergreen shrub or multi-stem small tree valued for its dark glossy green pinnately compound foliage and blue-purple spring flowers that smell like grape bubblegum. Seeds that fall from the plant can take years to germinate, as they have extremely hard shells. Read more articles about Texas Mountain Laurel. Then cut out thin, spindly branches. The Texas Mountain Laurel, Sophora secundiflora, is an excellent evergreen choice in your landscape. If the flowers are not deadheaded, nondescri… Evergreen. Even better, this is one of those plants that disperses its aroma several feet; I can smell my neighbors’ plant’s blooms from across the street. It does not respond very well to pruning, and should be cut Positive. This approach appears to work best if you first make a small cut in the tough outer shell. native to Mexico and the American Southwest. These roots seem to mostly grow straight down and not so much to the sides…but Check into that further. Some people find the fragrance overwhelming. So while you might be tempted to prune during winter dormancy, this might result in less abundant blooms. The Texas Mountain Laurel (Sophora secundiflora) is a Central Texas native that opens its beautiful purple blooms in February and March and intoxicates the senses. An alternative pruning time is in the summer, after it has finished flowering. The plant is equally striking as a shrub or limbed up into a small tree to … But if you want to change its form, say, into more of a traditional tree shape, or into a more compact bush, you can do so. Control these one-inch-long snackers with Bacillus thuringiensis. You will still see Texas mountain laurel referred to as S. secundiflora or C. secundiflora in some places. If the rain doesn’t get us this is a great weekend to be in the garden. This slow growing evergreen may be grown as a medium to large shrub or trained to a single or multi-trunk tree. Yet, occasionally, mountain laurels in winter have problems. No problem. It is highly drought tolerant after getting established for a year or two and is cold tolerant to about 10°F. On Mar 22, 2004, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote: Texas Mountain Laurel is a beautiful large shrub or small tree. Here is more about what we do. It prefers poor, rocky soil, but is tolerant of any well-drain… Zones. First prune out any deadwood. Tag Archives: Texas Mountain Laurel Post navigation Tip of the Week – Week 12 in the Zone 9 Garden. This popular plant is often used as a flowering, evergreen shrub but, with time and proper pruning, it can be trained to … texas mountain laurel. Multi-stemmed shrub or small tree. The Texas mountain laurel (Sophora secundiflora) is a desirable landscape shrub popular in the alkaline soils around Interstate 35, which cuts through the middle of the state, and areas westward. Texas mountain laurel (Sophora secundiflora) is one, but its range is limited due to lack of cold hardiness. Also known as mescal bean, the Texas mountain laurel (Dermatophyllum secundiflorum syn. Texas Mountain Laurel. Sophora secundiflora. Julie. It is hardy down to 10 degree F. needs full sun. Full sun. Previously known interchangeably as Sophora secundiflora and Calia secundiflora, recent phylogenetic studies have led to the reclassification of certain members of the Sophora genus into Dermatophyllum – a taxonomic synonym for Calia. Deer leave this one alone, so nothing to worry about there. You would have to amend the soil for the life of the tree, which may be 100 years or more. Sow these in gallon-sized containers with holes in the bottom filled with well-draining potting mix. We occasionally link to goods offered by vendors to help the reader find relevant products. COPYRIGHT © 2021 ASK THE EXPERTS LLC. However you plant your seeds, water them daily for the first couple of months, then about once a week for another year. For a more shrub-like appearance, trim the upper branches. Texas mountain laurel, known botanically as Sophora secundiflora, is an ornamental evergreen tree that is native to North America. The large clusters – as long as 6 inches – of showy flowers appear in early spring, and sadly, bloom for just a few weeks before withering and taking their scent away. Some of these are reflective of the plant’s native territory, which in addition to central, southern, and western Texas, also includes New Mexico and northern Mexico. Water Texas mountain laurel trees infrequently to prevent the soil around them from drying out completely. unkindly, to grape flavored Kool-Aid. Seed grown. To Gretchen, nothing is more rewarding than a quick dash to the garden to pluck herbs to season the evening meal. There is no actual need to prune Texas mountain laurel. If you’re looking for live plants, consider these from Amazon. Once established, these drought-tolerant shrubs require little to no irrigation. Sophora secundiflora An evergreen small tree or large shrub that is native to central Texas. D. secundiflorum will also tolerate light shade for … Still, you can find them commonly in the buffer zones (riparian zones) between river and lands They’ll do well in clay, loam, and sand, and will tolerate being planted in or near turf. The intoxicating fragrance of Texas mountain laurel is enough to cause drivers to slam on the brakes or dog walkers to abruptly stop short, giving poor Fido whiplash. I loved reading this!! If someone hands you some hard, older pods, soak them in water to make it easier to break them apart and get at the seeds. Vegetables. Mountain laurel, which is hardy in zones 4 through 9, prefers acidic, evenly moist soil and near perfect drainage. Texas Mountain Laurel. about growing Texas mountain laurels in the landscape. Calia secundiflora, formerly Sophora secundiflora) ranges from Texas through the American Southwest and down into Mexico. With both donated and purchased seeds, chances are they’re more mature. HABIT: Slow growing, dense foliage, bushy unless trimmed into tree form. These plants grow slowly, so if you’re looking for an immediate statement in the landscape, you might consider purchasing a well-established specimen in a large container from a local nursery. Dig a hole slightly bigger than the root ball, then carefully place the root ball into the hole, and backfill with planting site soil. Ht. Of no relation to the flowering mountain laurel shrub native to the eastern United States, this shrub/tree is a native of the Chihuahuan desert. containing bright orange seeds that, while beautiful, are very poisonous and Texas Mountain Laurel (Sophora secundiflora): Shrubby evergreen that likes full sun and grows to 8 feet. The bad news is that this plant is plagued by Uresiphita reversalis, aka genista caterpillar or sephora worm. How to Plant A Southern Fall Vegetable Garden, 15 Creative Uses for Bricks in Landscape and Garden Design, Build a Greenhouse Out of Free Pallet Racking, How to Grow Cauliflower, a Challenging Cool-Weather Crop, How to Identify, Prevent, and Treat Scab in Stone Fruits, 11 of the Best Birdbaths: Your Guide to Water Features for Your Feathered Friends, Seeds: 1/2 inch; transplant: same depth as root ball, Soil should be alkaline and well-draining. Choose a planting site in an area that gets full sun. Water often. Texas mountain laurel is a tough evergreen shrub or small tree Evidence of their use can be found in numerous archaeological sites in Texas and Mexico, and shows that these cultures also used the colorful seeds decoratively. Sign up to get all the latest gardening tips! Though these slow-growing plants can be kept pruned to a shrub size, most often they are allowed to mature into small treelike forms 10 feet wide and 15 feet high, multi- or single-trunked. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. The caterpillars form loose webbing on the plants they’re decimating. So much to see and do. You’ll get two newly sprouted plants. Some compare the scent to grape Kool-Aid, soda, or gum, but the fragrance is deeper, richer, and more floral than the artificial aroma of processed food. Slow growing, it can reach up to 30 feet (15 m.) in height The seeds – called mescal beans – are a pretty orange-red color and are sometimes used as necklace beads. Texas mountain laurel prefers alkaline, well-drained rocky soils, including those that contain limestone. It prefers well-draining, rocky, infertile soil, and it It is almost hard to believe that the mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia, which grows comfortably in USDA plant hardiness zones 5 to 9) carries within it a deadly poison. Texas Mountain Laurel. She’s never met a succulent she didn’t like and gets really irritated every 3-4 years when Austin actually has a freeze cold enough to kill them. It can be pruned to keep it shrub-like. Prune no more than one-third of the plant at a time. Share your tips and thoughts in the comments section. thanks for your feedback! Texas Mountain Laurel Newly Sprouted Plants via Amazon. Originally published on January 23, 2020. It is heat and drought tolerant and requires little maintenance once it is established. survive winters in USDA zone 7b. maintenance is low. Can be trained as a nice espalier or patio tree. Dermatophyllum secundiflorum is a species of flowering shrub or small tree in the pea family, Fabaceae, that is native to the southwestern United States (Texas, New Mexico) and Mexico (Chihuahua and Coahuila south to Hidalgo, Puebla and Querétaro). On Mar 10, 2009, olmpiad from Dallas, TX (Zone 8a) wrote: A beautiful cultivar of the classic Texas Mountain Laurel. A quick note: those of us here in Texas understand there’s another plant that calls itself “mountain laurel.” Nevertheless, our laurel is unrelated to Kalmia latifolia, a member of the heather family, Ericaceae, whereas ours is in the pea family, Fabaceae. The mescal beans contain a number of poisonous quinolizidine alkaloids, including cystine, a narcotic alkaloid with a similar molecular structure to that of nicotine. Showy, pea-like fragrant violet-blue flowers in terminal clusters create a wonderful display in spring. Lovely as they are, the flowers of Texas mountain laurel are toxic to humans and animals, as are the plant’s seed pods and leaves. by David Rodriguez. This is also a drought-tolerant shrub.