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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers Nan Hampton, Jimmy Mills and Barbara Medford to be the culpable and capable parties. Yet, others think staff members Damon Waitt, Joe Marcus and Philip Hawkins might 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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Questions From Near You

Chihuahua, Mexico, Other
Smarty Plants on Yerba de la Negrita
I would like to know where I can get Yerba de la Negrita "Scarlet Globemallow". For what can I use it? What is it like? I have a rancho in Chihuahua Mexico and I wonder if it grows there.
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Terlingua, TX
Leaves dropping from a potted Mesquite
I have a Prosopis pubescens (Screwbean Mesquite) that I purchased at a nursery in Alpine, TX just a few miles away from me. It was a in nursery style black plastic container. The mesquite is perhaps a...
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Terlingua, TX
Identity of an Astragalus species near Terlingua, TX
I have been photographing as many of the wildflowers that I can this Spring 2013 season here in the Big Bend Area between BBNP, Terlingua and Alpine, TX. Two days ago I took a drive from Terlingua to ...
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Terlingua, TX
Identification of pale blue flower near Big Bend, TX
I have looked almost everywhere in order to ID this bloom with no luck. Some blooms do arrive close but not quite. I live just outside of Big Bend National Park in Terlingua, TX. On a hike into Dog Ca...
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Terlingua, TX
Preparation of seeds of Cosmos parviflorus for planting
This is in regards to Cosmos Parviflorus. I reside directly outside of Big Bend National Park in Terlingua, TX. Cosmos Parviflorus grows naturally here and I have collected some seeds from a couple of...
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Alpine, TX
Black growth on sotol plants
My mature sotol plants have a black-like growth on the leaves. Is there any thing I can do to treat what looks like a disease on these plants?
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Alpine, TX
Using salt to kill bermuda grass
(Submitting to site per your request on Facebook, plus an added bit o'info) I am considering trying to kill off the bermuda grass around my raised bed with salt. Vinegar isn't cutting it.. S'pos...
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Fort Davis, TX
Woolly butterfly bush only one native to Texas from Ft. Davis TX
I see many kinds of Butterfly Bush at nurseries. Is the woolly butterfly bush the only Texas native?
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Fort Davis, TX
Non-native Silver lace vine invasive from Ft. Davis TX
Is silver lace vine invasive?
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Fort Davis, TX
White powder on non-native houseplants from Fort Davis TX
I have a white powder on my houseplants that I can't figure out what it is or what to do about it? (Dracaena & Corn plants) Could be a fungus can you help? (can send a photo if you will tell me how t...
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Clint, TX
Eliminating non-native grasses growiing in non-native alfalfa in Clint, TX
I have six acres of alfalfa in Clint, Tx which was planted three years ago. After taking it to Jaime Iglesias PhD, CEA-Agriculture Texas Agrilife Extension El Paso County; he responded: Mr. Zuniga: ...
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El Paso, TX
List of edible weeds from El Paso TX
Where can I find a list of edible weeds that grow in El Paso, TX.
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El Paso, TX
Replacement for shade grass in El Paso TX
We currently have a Honey Mesquite tree with thinning bermuda grass underneath in our front yard. I suspect that the filtered shade is killing the bermuda. I was thinking of planting Buffalo Grass, or...
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EL Paso, TX
Plant identification, possibly Datura wrightii
I have a plant in my back yard, it had big white trumpet flowers, and now it has huge green pods. Doesn't smell very nice. Could you tell me what it is?
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El Paso, TX
Indoor plants for El Paso TX
I want to know what kind of plants will survive indoors in El Paso. It is so dry here, is there anything leafy or flowery that will thrive indoors in this climate?
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El Paso, TX
Problems with non-native artichoke from El Paso, TX
I have a five year old artichoke plant in the ground that gets sun and some shade, has plenty of fertilizer and compost. Gets enough water. It has been beautiful in years past and last year had 10 a...
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El Paso, TX
Native lawn grass for El Paso
I am new to the El Paso area and my front and back yards are currently mostly dirt with a tiny bit of dying (thank goodness) bermuda grass. I want to seed both yards with something that will grow well...
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El Paso, TX
Silverleaf Nightshade, Happy in El Paso Texas
Trying to identify a small wildflower all over in our El Paso neighborhood. Lavender bloom, five pointed petals, Star pattern inside, five bright yellow pistols. Beautiful. Thanks!
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El Paso, TX
Transplanting Desert willows in El Paso, TX
We have some volunteer Desert Willows growing on an empty lot nearby. Can we dig them up and transplant them in the yard? If so, how? They are about 3-4 feet tall
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El Paso, TX
Fast-growing, tall taproot tree for El Paso
I live in El Paso Texas and would like to know what would be a good shade tree to plant. I would like this tree to grow fast and tall. I would also like the roots to go straight down.
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El Paso, TX
Mixed non-native sod in El Paso, TX
Hello, My family and I just finished laying sod in our backyard. We thought we could save some money by buying scraps from a sod farm nearby. It never dawned on us to ask if the sod we were buying w...
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