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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 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

Huntington, NY
Plants for a sandy slope in NY
I can really use your help. I have a steep very, very sandy slope I need to plant to stop the erosion. It gets sun from 9:00 to 2:00. I plan on adding an irrigation system in the area. Planting is goi...
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greenlawn, NY
Water loving companions for a vegetable bed in Greenlawn New York
I have a plot in a community garden that has poor drainage in one corner. I've installed raised beds, and that has helped immensely, but I'd like to plant some native plants in the wet corner that c...
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northport, NY
Evergreen trees for Long Island, NY
I live on across from the water on the north shore of Long Island. I would like the names of some hardy trees that are both native to Long Island and also NOT deciduous! I am finding it easy to find...
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East Northport, NY
Shrubs with fragrant flowers for screening in NY
I'm trying to find a bush or shrub to screen my backyard and block noise. I want something I can plant along the fence that would get between 6 and 8 ft tall. Something neat, and if possible with fra...
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East Northport, NY
Peach tree problems in Long Island, NY
This year my peachtree is bearing fruit for the first time. I live in Long Island NY. I notice a sap on the bark near the soil. Also some leaves are getting disease looking and some peaches are loo...
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Melville, NY
Ivy for shady wall in New York
I live in Melville, New York. The house is adjacent to the Long Island Expressway and there is a cement sound barrier wall about 25 feet high that runs along the backyard of my 1 acre property. I ...
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Levittown, NY
Non-native chocolate mimosa in Levittown NY
I purchased about 2 ft chocolate mimosa tree in early June of this year from a local nursery located in Nassau County, New York. It was doing in our Long Island soil just fine for over a month, I woul...
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Levittown, NY
Tree for memorial in Levittown NY
I am planning a tree planting memorial in Wantagh Park and I don't know what will be hardy enough to grow there. There are the constant breeze and salt water elements to deal with there and of course...
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Smithtown, NY
What is difference between Rhododendrons and Azaleas
I am replanting my entire front yard as a native woodland garden (I am on Long Island, NY). I am having a hard time finding native rhododendrons and/or azaleas. I would prefer to remain true to the ...
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Smithtown, NY
Privacy shield for Long Island, NY
I live in Long Island New York (Smithtown), Zone 6, I think. My yard has mostly shade and I would like to plant something for privacy along my back fence because my neighbors house is close and their...
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Smithtown, NY
Evergreen Privacy Hedge for Long Island
I live on Long Island and want a privacy evergreen hedge partial sun.
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Hauppauge, NY
Replacement for maple tree lost in Hurricane Sandy from Hauppauge NY
Lost a Maple street tree in Hurricane Sandy, was forty-eight years old. Town will not replace the tree. Must do it on my own. What would you suggest? Nothing that grows too tall.
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Hauppauge, NY
Yellow jackets on non-native crape myrtles
Hey Mr. Smarty Plants I have only 1 question. I have several Crape Myrtles that have numerous amounts (alarming) of yellow jacket bees on them. who what where when why etc? Should I be concerned? tha...
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CentraI Islip, NY
Plant Identification
Having great difficulty identifying a perennial plant. Although it looks marvelous (coming in two shades), I haven't been able to correctly identify it. Local college feels it is Eupatorium Rugosum, ...
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East Meadow, NY
Dicentra Late in Emerging in the Spring
I have had a bleeding heart plant that has come up for over 50 years. This year it did not come up. Is there anything I can do? Is there a chance that it will come up next year or should I assume that...
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West Islip, NY
Spot for communion and tree planting on Long Island
I'm planning to combine my son's communion and a tree planting memorial for his uncle/godfather that passed on Valentine's Day. I'm looking for a venue on Long Island that can combine both on May ...
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Babylon, NY
Replacing shrubs with perennials in NY
We removed a lot of shrubs from our back yard that had been there for many years. We now want to plant perennials but there seems to be a lot of very deep roots in the soil. The roots look dead but I...
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Massapequa Park, NY
Plant for graveside in New Jersey
I am looking for a plant to put on a graveside in southern New Jersey. The problem is that the area is very hot & dry and the plant would only receive rain. I am interested in a perennial. Thanks
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Massapequa, NY
Dog Friendly Privacy Hedge for Long Island
Can you please advise me of some plants for a privacy hedge that are non-toxic to dogs and that would thrive on Long Island, NY? I am looking for a hedge to grow to about 6-8 ft.
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wantagh, NY
Sources of native wildflowers for Long Island, NY
What wildflowers are native to Long Island and where can I buy seeds/plants? There is so much information out there that I find my region, Long Island, seems to get lost. There is only 1 loca...
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Wantagh, NY
Photographing and Identifying trees of Long Island
After being in a car accident I got into photography as sports are a distant memory due to my injuries. As a new hobby I thought of taking pictures of trees and then finding out their species name. ...
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