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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

Severn, MD
Native shrub to replace non-native azaleas.
I want to replace my two dozen azaleas this spring (I think they're unattractive once the flowers fall off). I like the multiseason characteristics of weigela (midnight wine, W&R), but want to go na...
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Severn, MD
Native grasses for a sandy Maryland yard
Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in Severn (AA County) where we have sandy soil and on a well/septic system. Can you tell me a native grass I can seed in my yard? Something hardy and does not require a ...
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Linthicum Heights, MD
Elimination of non-native English ivy in Maryland
I have Old English Ivy sprouting up throughout my side yard. What can I do to get rid of it? Would putting lime down help or Crabgrass control? What would you suggest and the easier the better as I...
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Pasadena, MD
Curling, Red Leaves on Gaura
My gaura had most of its lower leaves turn red and then fall off. It is July now, I bought and planted it in May where it seemed to do really well growing several more inches tall and blooming nicely....
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Pasadena, MD
Yellowing of Thuja occidentalis leaves in early Fall in Maryland
Mr. Smarty Plants, I am from Maryland. Please help. I have planted 23 Thuja occidentalis Smaragd in my front yard a few months ago. Height of about 3 feet. Most of the trees have turned golden brown....
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laurel, MD
Plants/grasses for a bioswale in Maryland
Mr. Smarty Plants, I'm looking for a good seed mixture, wetland plant/grass mix, to use in Bio-Swales in central Maryland. Can you help me?
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Columbia, MD
Ground cover for shady area in Maryland
What ground cover grows well on a shady slope with close to surface tree roots?
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Ellicott City, MD
Shade Tree for Baltimore Patio
I am looking for a deep-rooted shade tree (or a tall shrub) for near my patio in Baltimore, Md. I desire shade in summer, but with minimum impact to the patio. The tree would be about 20 feet from the...
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Baltimore., MD
Information about native aconitum
There was a picture of a plant in our local newspaper this past week. In the photo ID they called this plant an aconite, a member of the buttercup family. My questions are: is there such a plant? is i...
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Baltimore, MD
Vines for side of home
Can you suggest a native vine for Central Maryland? The intent is for the vine to grow up the southern face of a vinyl sided home to make the home more attractive but also to provide some reduction o...
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Baltimore, MD
Location of Agalinis acuta, sandplain gerardia.
Where can the sandplain gerardia be found?
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Baltimore, MD
Blue plants or flowers in Baltimore, MD
I have a taxi company in the city called Bluecab. The headquarters is in an industrial area and the soil is tough and well, industrial. There will be no watering or maintenance done. Looks like a car ...
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Baltimore, MD
Identification of small plant with white flowers in Baltimore, MD
It's a small plant, has flowers in June, four white petals with large, tall conical center, about no more than an inch in diameter. The leaves are alternating with branched veins. It stays at about 6...
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Baltimore, MD
Evergreen Privacy Screen for Maryland
I am looking for an evergreen that will suffice to be planted as a privacy screen between my property and my neighbors. Looking to plant a row at the property line. The lot is shaded most of the d...
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Baltimore, MD
Deciduous tree with tap root
I have a 13 foot space between two town houses and would like to plant a slender deciduous tree up to 30 feet in height with a tendency to tap root so as not to disturb the foundation of the houses. ...
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Baltimore, MD
Literature on native plants and wildlife from Baltimore
Can you tell me a good review of the literature on the relation between native plants and ecology; for example, a study might indicate how native plants support more birds or other wildlife.
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Baltimore, MD
Native plants more beneficial for Maryland and Chesapeake Bay?
Why are native plant species more beneficial than non native plant species for the state of Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay?
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Baltimore, MD
Simple flowers vs. compound flowers
Please, give the characteristics of a "simple flower" as distinct from a compound flower which has rays and "disk flowers". What type of flower is the flower of a chive,which seems to be composed...
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Baltimore, MD
Non-native Littleleaf Boxwood and native alternatives for Baltimore
I am looking for a small hedge or shrub, that will look nice year round, and won't get too large. I live in Baltimore, MD. I have heard of Winter Gem Boxwood. Will this prove hardy in my area? H...
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Baltimore, MD
Smarty Plants on epiphyllums
I don't have a digital cameria, but I hope you can identify my plants easily by description. I believe they are called something similar to the word "epithelium". They look like a "mother-in-la...
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Baltimore, MD
Wildflowers for an April wedding in Baltimore
Dear Mr Smarty Pants, Thank you for your help. Our niece wants native wildflowers blooming at her wedding on April 17, 2010 which will be at a family home on the Eastern Shore of Maryland between Ba...
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