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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

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

Rock Hill, SC
Plants for delineating property line
I have a neighbor who does not mow his grass or take care of a strip that runs between my property and his. I would like to plant some inexpensive, low maintenance, shrubs, that would do well in full...
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Rock Hill, SC
Baby in a manger plant from Rock Hill SC
I'm looking for the correct name for baby in a manger(It's a plant.)
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Charleston, SC
Getting rid of poison ivy
Dear Mr Smarty Plants, Likewise I also have a shady area in my yard with overgrowth of poison ivy. It borders a small duck pond and we have a Golden Retriever. I too would like to plant soon afterward...
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YORK, SC
Danger of seeds being damaged in cold stratifying
I started cold stratifying some wildflower seeds with some damp cloths in a refrigerator to plant them in the spring. When I was finished preparing the seeds the refrigerator door was somehow left ope...
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Waxhaw, NC
Are Eastern White Pine suitable for Waxhaw NC
Pinus strobus ( White Pine )- I wish to plant four of these evergreens along our property lines as a screen. Our county is selling one foot plants in a container. Our soil is clay. Are these t...
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Waxhaw, NC
Propagation of native American beautyberry in North Carolina
I have found a beauty berry bush growing wild in the woods. It is huge! I broke off a couple of branches (1/4 " in diameter) and wonder if it will root if I just stick it in good moist soil. I alr...
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Waxhaw, NC
Saving frozen yuccas from North Carolina
I live in NC and have 2 potted yucca plants on my deck. Every year I have brought them in for the winter. This year, someone told us that we could leave them out all winter. They began to die in the c...
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Waxhaw, NC
Small evergreen shrubs for horse barn in North Carolina
I want to plant some low growing evergreen shrubs in pots in my paddock around my barn. The horses can occasionally be in this are but not for an extended time. I am in NC. Any suggestions?
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Waxhaw, NC
Erosion control blankets for controlling slope in North Carolina
We live in NC (red clay dirt). We recently/in the process of installing a pool. They contractor has completely unearthed our entire yard - and part of our property is on a substantial hill. Is there...
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Clover, SC
What plants to put under an oak tree in Clover SC
I have a 70 year old oak tree in my backyard and have tried to grow grass out from it with no success. I'd like to just plant some shrubs and make it a natural area now, but need advice on what I ca...
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Matthews, NC
Small native evergreen shrubs for North Carolina
I live in zone 7 and need miniature shrub to go in flower bed situated in full sun. I love gardenias but afraid the intensity of the sun might be too much.
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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
Care for non-native Basil
One of my Basil plants has leaves that are curling (shriveling.) I see no insects on any of the leaves. The plant next to this one is growing beautifully. Both are in large pots and are in the sun....
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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
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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Charlotte, NC
Identification of vine in North Carolina
How can I send a picture to you of a vine that I can't seem to identify?
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Charlotte, NC
Plants native to Caribbean from Charlotte NC
Do you know of any shade tolerant plants native to the Caribbean that may be available to buy at a local nursery? I know this is a tough question to answer on many levels.. essentially, if I wanted t...
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Charlotte, NC
Cutting Gardens from Charlotte, NC
I want to plant a year-round picking garden for flowers to bring into my home. I want to look at landscape plans in lieu of throwing down wildflower seeds. Can you suggest a few websites for ideas?
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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
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
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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