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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

Corneilius, NC
Need a ground cover to stop erosion on a slope next to a pond.
I have a large natural pond. One side has a steep slope. I need a attractive,low/no maintenance, evergreen? plant to stop the erosion into the pond. Cornelius/charlotte nc
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Huntersville, NC
Getting rid of poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac
How can I rid my yard of poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac? I have tried roundup, poison ivy roundup and even a clorox solution and nothing seems to kill it, I keep seeing it come up. Any help ...
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Mooresville, NC
Plants for wet soils in North Carolina
I'm looking for evergreen plants (shrubs or ground cover)that will tolerate wet conditions for the zone 8 area of North Carolina. The local garden centers here do not stock these types of plants, eve...
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Mooresville, NC
Native water plants for bio-retention pond in North Carolina
I am looking for North Carolina native plants that can take part shade and very wet conditions (bioretention pond environment). Any suggestions?
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Denver, NC
Pruning a non-native Hinoki cypress from Denver NC
Hi! Our painters have asked that we trim the Golden Hinoki Cypress back from the house. The tree is about 20' tall, beautiful and healthy. Since it is July and therefore, HOT! I'm wondering how t...
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Concord, NC
Care for non-native Plumeria from Concord NC
I have had my plumeria plant for the past 5 to 7 years. It is a pot plant and I live in North Carolina, I take the pot inside in he winter time. The leaves fall off, in the spring after the last fro...
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Concord, NC
Steep slope from Charlotte NC
I live near Charlotte, NC and I have a very steep sloped area from the edge of our front yard down to the road. It's a huge eyesore mainly because it is red clay dirt and has nothing growing on it. W...
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Concord, NC
Evergreen vine for screen
We have pretty much "dead" red-tipped photinia bushes and old pine trees that have seen better days, on a steep hillside. We need to remove and replace with a more natural setting, with some terraci...
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Iron Station, NC
Mulching vegetables with straw
I have a small garden with 4 different veggies, tomatoes, hot peppers, squash & cucumbers. which plants is it OK to put straw under? which plants will straw hurt the stalks or other possibilities? tha...
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charlotte , NC
Tall perennials for a sunny North Carolina border
I need border plants for in front of a picket fence along front sidewalk. Space is only approx 1'6" wide and widening is not an option. So far I have daylilies, cannas, Mexican petunias, daisies, i...
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Charlotte, NC
Plant identification
I see a previous question from Ohio on this plant, so I will copy the description and try to submit photos. "A year later a weed-like plant started growing beside it. It has very thorny leaves, stem...
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Charlotte, NC
Native flowers and plants for meadow in North Carolina
I live in Rock Hill, SC, just south of Charlotte, NC. I would like to have recommendations for planting native flowers and plants in a small meadow in my backyard. Do you have any suggestions or kno...
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Charlotte, NC
Native plants for erosion control in North Carolina
I have an area on the north side of my house that is a hill with about a 6:1 slope. It also has a set of steps used to get from the front of the yard to the rear yard. It is very shaded. I am havin...
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Charlotte, NC
Plants to put beside driveway
I have a 100 foot dying grassy side to my driveway. It is about 5 foot wide. What could I plant that would not look like soldiers but be at least 4 foot high and I could use mulch or needles to beauti...
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Charlotte, NC
Plants for a lakeside bank in NC
Our association is looking to plant a huge sloped area that runs down to Lake Wylie. We want to plant something that is good for erosion and that does not grow too tall so that we keep our view of th...
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Charlotte, NC
Shade trees for NC
What fast growing non invasive tree would be good to plant in a sub-division that could possibly shade my 2 story house? I would like it to have a tap root system so that it is strong in windy condit...
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Charlotte, NC
Non-native citronella mosquito plant wintering inside in Charlotte NC
Can I bring the citronella mosquito plant in the house over the winter, or should it be planted outside. I live in Charlotte, NC.
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Charlotte, NC
Young Maple Dropping Leaves in Late Summer
I have a 6-year-old maple tree. I'm not sure what type it is as the builder planted it. It is as tall as our two-story house and very healthy. It's the biggest tree in our neighborhood because we fe...
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Charlotte, NC
Native plants for restoring a North Carolina pond site
I reconstructed the dam to a 50 year old cattle pond at our high-end residential development in Charlotte, NC. There are many large mature trees around the pond but also some good sun exposure at two ...
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Charlotte, NC
Plants for creek bank in North Carolina
I would like a list of plant options to plant on an almost vertical creek bank in some location in Charlotte, NC. The creek runs through a 300 acre basin, maybe 3 or 4' high banks and I have never se...
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Charlotte, NC
Privacy Screen Tree for Patio in NC
What is a good tree to plant in front of a brick wall/fence to provide privacy and not compromise the structural integrity of the wall? The brick fence is my neighbors but I need privacy as they can s...
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