Google Landscape Guide?

Google reads my mind, enter a few letters and Google has my answer. AMAZING! I love it and use it all the time for our work and maybe we’re too predictable……..really, how many times can we look up plant information before Google puts together what we want?  Everything from this computer ID is plant based or menus; the newest Proven Winners for our area, best weed control for poa annua, and who has the best BBQ in McKinney?  But, Google only supplies the information and you need experience to filter through to get the information that best matches plants to your local environment.  When it comes to plants, there are lots of hybrids, variables, and varieties, even for Google to make the grade every time.  Why, because, it’s NATURE!
Case in point; the Texas Madrone, Texas Madrone, Naked Indian, Lady’s Leg, Texas Arbutus, Madrono  Arbutus xalapensisa a sexy plant and yes, we think there are sexy plants.  Look up the Madrone on Google; The Madrone, a magnificent, dramatic, exciting, mystical, inspiring, tree, and a Texas Native.  Hardiness is zone 7.  Win, Win, right?
North Texas is Zone 7, should work?  The local nursery sells it, tag says partial to full sun, evergreen, flowers in the spring, small tree, low water requirements, adaptable to soil.  Really, have you found the perfect tree for your north Texas landscape?  NOT! Why the heck not, huh?  The nursery sells it, everything related on Google says zone 7, why not here? OK, sexy Texas Madrone likes it HOT, HOT, HOT, really hot.  Been outside in July, August?  It gets hot, right?  Heck yeah!   But, not a dry heat, here the heat is humid and the Madrone does not like humidity, maybe it’s leaves get frizzy? What humidity does to the Madrone is make it susceptible tofungus.  Madrone even though it says; adaptable to soil, it is not a fan of clay soil, and if you’ve ever worked with clay soil you know why this sexy tree does not to put its roots down into our clay Gumbo.  Does north Texas have clay soil?  Ah, yeah! We’ll start alphabetically with our clay types in Collin county;  Altoga,

Texas Madrone
Texas Madrone

Austin, Burleson, Crockett, Eddy (gravelly clay) Ellis, Engle, Ferris-Houston,  Houston, Hunt, Lamar, Lewisville, Stephen, Trinity and Wilson Clay, 15 types of clay soil, a rose is a rose, but clay is what we have here in Collin County.   Clay is the stuff of life, but not all plants  want a dense, sticky clay around their roots.

Madrones like it high and dry on limestone outcroppings,   where they are happiest, the most beautiful, and where it belongs! It supports the native wildlife; birds, mammals, pollinators.    We love the Madrone, and we use it in the landscapes settings where it thrives: in the south western part of the state and western edges of Hill country, Trans-Pecos and Edwards plateau.
What we are trying to say; Google is an AWESOME, FANTASTIC, GREAT, resource to research plants for your garden and landscape.  Make Google, your go to.  A starting point for researching plant material.   But, don’t replace the years of experience working with growers, nurseries or the hard knocks school of plants from those who live and breath the green business.
Still, it is nature, it could work, and the nursery says it will, they wouldn’t be shining me on, would they?  It could work, with enough water it will work! If I plant it, it will live.  Right?  We’ve given you our best advise.