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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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Hoboken, NJ
Smarty Plants on wildflower collecting
Is wildflower collecting a good school activity?
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Manhattan, NY
Seed germination for sugar maple (Acer saccharum)
How can I germinate sugar maple?(step by step, please) I have some seeds but can't make them grow directly outside, so could you recommend a method which takes place inside?! I've heard something ab...
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Manhattan, NY
Evergreen shrub for pot in Manhattan
What is the best evergreen shrub or waxy leaved woody evergeen plant to use in a large concrete container in front of a doorman building in manhattan. Our building faces west and is directly on Rivers...
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New York City, NY
Most invasive, noxious plant in U.S. from New York City.
I was wondering, what is the most invasive/ noxious plant in the U.S? Thanks in advance.
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Wapperger Falls , NY
Propagation of myrtle in Wapperger Falls, NY
How do you propagate myrtle?
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NYC, NY
Need help with yucca palm in New York City, NY.
I have had my yucca palm plant for almost 10 years. The bark has started to peel off although leaves seem fine. The second smaller separate yucca plant has half its bark and trunk gone. I can't see a...
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New York, NY
Non-native Ginkgo biloba in New York
A female Ginkgo tree dropped its seeds. Now, I have seedlings all over the yard. I don't want more female Ginkgo trees. They create putrid Ginkgo seeds. However, I would like more male Ginkgo trees. ...
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New York City, NY
Liquid glucose as substitute for sunlight from New York City
I am curious to find out whether liquid glucose can be poured as water for mung bean plants as substitute for no sunlight. Is the possible? Will a specific amount of glucose need to be used? Can liqui...
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NYC, NY
Orange trumpet creeper parasitic to oaks in New York City?
Is the Orange Trumpet Creeper a parasite to oak trees? My concern is that a neighbor with a tall oak has a vine growing up it and I wonder if it could damage or weaken the tree?
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New York City, NY
Wild Native Hybrids and Cultivars?
It is my understanding that hybrids can occur with or without human intervention whereas cultivars always involve human intervention. Strictly speaking does this mean native wildflowers can never be ...
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New York City, NY
Salt and flood tolerant plants for Brooklyn NY
Hi, I am researching suitable plants for landscape architectural projects in the wake of New York City’s proposal for increased storm and climate change resilience. I am specifically looking at the ne...
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New York City, NY
Container gardening for pool in southern California
I have large planters around pool would like to know what plants to use that will not grow to high or to big and will not have large roots home located in camarillo ca.
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NYC, NY
Distance from existing structures to plant a tree in New York
I would like to plant a large maple or birch near my suburban home. How far away from my home, garage, or any buildings should the seed be planted?
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NYC, NY
Can I Grow Beautyberry
Will try to be brief. Beautyberry sprouted leaves in vase of branches in water. It's NYC beginning of winter. Can I plant it outside? If not will it grow in a pot inside? Thanks. Happy New Ye...
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NYC, NY
Container plants for terrace in New York City
What flowering plants would you recommend that will grow well on a 16th floor terrace ,with all day sun in NYC?
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New York, NY
Red berry that changes the taste of other foods
Hi, your site is fantastic. I heard from a friend that he tried a red berry in Florida which when eaten change the taste of other foods eaten afterwards. He ate a lemon after trying that berry and th...
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New York, NY
Privacy screen for New York apartment balcony.
Hello, I live in an apartment in New York City with an outdoor large balcony. I would like to buy evergreens to make the space more private. Do you have any suggestions on what type of plant woul...
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New York, NY
Plants for a Vacant Lot in the Big Apple
Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, We have recently gone in to restore a vacant plot in Harlem. This soil is varied, but mostly rubble, old slag, some sand in one area, old fill- pH 7-8.5. We dug a small tren...
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New York, NY
Full list of grasses for Connecticut from New York City
Sorry, this is a followup to the native Connecticut grass query I sent half an hour ago. I see that it was asking for 'recommended species' that I ended up with such a short list of grasses (3). Th...
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New York, NY
Possibility of transporting native seeds to Europe
Hi, Is it possible to bring seeds for North American plants and wildflowers from the USA to Europe? I live in Italy and have many Italian friends who want me to bring seeds from America the next time ...
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New York, NY
Edible/medicinal plants in Suffolk County, NY
Which types of edible/medicinal plants are available in Suffolk County (Long Island NY)? Is there a place I can find a list with information about what they look like, where they can be found and what...
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