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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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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New River, AZ
What is sage-like plant in New River AZ?
I have a sage like looking plant growing wild in my yard. I live in the Sonora Desert. Its leaves are purple and once a year in spring it will bloom small blooms that are lavender. It grows 2 to 3 an...
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New River, AZ
Need suggestions for privacy hedge in New River, AZ.
Hi! I live on a acre that is fenced and cross-fenced with 6' chain link. I am desperate to find a drought tolerant, very low water, non-toxic, fast growing privacy hedge or vine that I can plant arou...
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Cave Creek, AZ
Do yuccas die after blooming?
We have a blue yucca which was planted 2 years ago and is just now blooming with a tower of white flowers. Will the entire plant die after blooming as the century plants do? If so, is there a way to s...
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Peoria, AZ
Shrubs for shade in Peoria, Arizona
My six-foot block wall is on the west side of my yard. There are two large shade trees in front of the wall. What kind of shrubs can I plant near this wall that only gets sun for about 2 hours in th...
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Sun City West , AZ
Tree options for patio in Sun City West, Arizona.
We have an area near our cement patio in Sun City West AZ where we would like to plant a shade tree. We planted a sissoo tree, but were told that the roots will damage the patio because of the proximi...
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Surprise, AZ
Evergreen low litter tree for Surprise AZ
Looking for a shade tree about 10-15 ft max with low litter and green all year round/full sun.
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Surprise, AZ
Further question on sprouts from holly tree in Surprise AZ
Thank you Barbara Medford for your response to my question about the sprouting holly tree in Surprise AZ. I took for granted that the tree I was talking about was a holly tree. I looked at pictures of...
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Surprise, AZ
Sprouts at base of holly in Surprise AZ
Friends have recently planted a holly tree in their front yard. They live in AZ and there is no grass (only rock) around their tree. It was planted as a fairly large tree (about 18 feet).My question i...
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Sun City, AZ
Vines for Poolsides
We would like some color along the pool, but do not want anything with flowers because of the pool. Are there any non-flowering vines that will grow in full sun in Arizona? We have 2 trelis' that we ...
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Sun City, AZ
Problems with Texas Ash from Sun City, AZ
What might be causing the leaves on my Texas Ash tree to have brown spots and curl up and die?
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Peoria, AZ
Problems with non-native, invasive Japanese Privet from Peoria AZ
I have Japanese Privit bushes. one out of 6 has started to grow very small leaves and does not look healthy. Moon Valley told me shortage of zinc, but that has not helped in 3 months. What can I ...
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Glendale, AZ
Need plants for shade in Arizona.
Please suggest plants that I can plant in a shaded area. I live in Glendale, Arizona. The shade will be 100% of the time.
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Glendale, AZ
Will hybrid Tecoma stans attract hummingbirds from Glendale AZ
We bought a bells of fire plant; would like to know if hummingbirds like them?
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Glendale, AZ
Non-native Filaree seeds for science classroom
Can I purchase Filaree seeds for my science classroom? If so, where?
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Glendale, AZ
Problems with non-native Japanese privet from Glendale AZ
We have Japanese privet shrub and they seem to be suffering from a disease, need help.
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Glendale, AZ
Navel orange disease problems
I live in Glendale, Arizona. I hav a mature miniature navel orange tree. This year it has lost a considerable amount of leaves. Also the fruit all has a large yellow spot. It looks pitiful. What shoul...
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Glendale, AZ
Queen Palm Fertilization in Arizona
I placed standard Miracle Grow in a root feeder device and inserted into the ground around all of my Queen Palms. Why have they taken a turn for the worse (furled tips on all new branches) Can you ov...
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scottsdale , AZ
Are Mesquite (Prosopis) pods safe for dogs to eat?
are pods from mesquite trees posionus to dogs if they chew or eat them?
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Rio Verde, AZ
Are Chilean Mesquite pods poisonous to dogs?
Are chilean Mesquite tree pods poisonous to dogs?
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Scottsdale, AZ
Transplanting non-native crape myrtle in Scottsdale AZ
When is the best time to transplant dwarf crape myrtle in Scottsdale AZ?
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Scottsdale, AZ
Non-flowering plants in Scottsdale AZ
I have three plants that are supposed to do well in Arizona but mine are not flowering. The yellow bells and orange jubilee I have get full sun, drip watered 3 x a week for 1 1/2 hrs (at 4am) and are...
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