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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

Rocky River, OH
Plants for a windbreak on a slope in OH
Have property at the top of a valley with a steep drop off. Would like to know native to NE Ohio ground covers, grasses perennials, and not too tall trees for windbreak that will prevent erosion. The ...
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Lakewood, OH
Native Backyard for Lakewood OH
I would like to do away with the lawn in my backyard in favor of native plants that would require minimal maintenance, including flowering plants that would encourage pollinators.
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Lakewood, OH
Precautions to take with Jack-in-the-Pulpit, Arisaema triphyllum
Are there precautions to take, such as wearing gloves while separating the seeds from the Jack In The Pulpit berries. The photos I have seen have gloved hands. I've read that the plant is toxic if in...
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Lakewood , OH
Texas smoketree
Does a smoketree grow in Texas? How can I identify it?
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Parma Hts, OH
Seedlings from established plants in Parma Hts., OH
I have 20 yr old shrubs and hedges along my back yard. I don't know their variety. How do I keep the seedlings from encroaching in my lawn? The seedlings have sprouted 3 feet into the lawn. Any ide...
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Parma, OH
Eradication of invasive thistles in Parma OH
Lawn is full of prickly weeds with very deep roots. May be called Scotch Thistle, although id is not confirmed. They will grow as tall as they can amid other plants, and when mowed in the lawn, they...
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Cleveland, OH
First wildflower to bloom in Madison Ohio
What is the first wildflower to bloom in spring in Madison, Ohio 44057. Is it the snowdrop?
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Cleveland, OH
Care for non-native indoor plants
My cousin in Pa. asked me to see how to care for 2 plants in the winter. The first is a Voo Doo Lily and the second is a Bengal Tiger plant. If you would please help I would be able to pass it along...
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Cleveland, OH
What is the name of a green plantin Ohio with white flowers that kind of look like broccoli?
Last summer I saw a plant that had very full, very light green almost white flowers that kind of looked like broccoli. Do you know the name of this plant?
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Cleveland, OH
Texas Mountain Laurel in Florida
Hi Mr. Smarty, This is more a comment than a question about Barbara Medford's (Estero, FL) question of whether you can grow Texas Mountain Laurel in Ft. Myers, FL. About 4 yrs. ago, I purchased a ...
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Cleveland, OH
Plant identification of vine in Ohio
I have a vine in my forest that grows up trees, that could eventually pull them over. It has roundleaves and prickers on the stem. What is this vine so I can research it?
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Cleveland, OH
More on bluebonnets
Can you grow Texas bluebonnets in Madison, OH which is right near Lake Erie?
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Cleveland, OH
Identification of Matelea reticulata
I recently saw blooming in an Austin park a small white-green flower ( 3/4 ") with a center that looked like a small pearl. Any idea what it is. I can't find it in my flower book, It was on a waist...
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Cleveland, OH
Information on herbs for Northeast Ohio
Hello there, I am writing you seeking some information on Northeast Ohio's native plants. This has been rather difficult to find—specific native plants that can be used as herbs. If you could h...
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Cleveland, OH
Use of non-native Indian Mustard for reducing lead in soil
The EPA phytoremediation documents say lead contamination can be reduced with Brassica juncea: "Successful Reduction of Lead Contamination. Phytoextraction was demonstrated at a site in Tren...
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Cleveland, OH
Wildflower seeds that drop into a sidewalk crack
This is an odd question. I'm writing a children's book about a seed that gets dropped in the crack of a sidewalk or driveway and blooms there. Can you tell me if there are any wildflowers that it ...
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Cleveland, OH
Tree planting in OH
When transplanting a tree (a maple in Spring in my case now), I understand that one should leave a surrounding doughnut like ridge around the root base to hold in the water from rains and irrigation. ...
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Shaker Heights, OH
Food value of cultivars of eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana)
Can you suggest any resources regarding the wildlife value of native plant cultivars? For example, I can only buy an eastern red Cedar cultivar in my region: "Burkii" or "Emerald Sentinel". I w...
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Shaker Heights, OH
Plants for erosion control on steep bank in Ohio
Another erosion question: We bought a place a year and a half ago with a stream/road run off at the back of our property. The southern exposure bank is quite high, I'm guessing 12 feet and therefor...
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Shaker Heights, OH
Pollinator plants for Ilex verticillata (winterberry)
How close do a male and female common winterberry need to be to produce berries. We bought a male and female last year and attracted cedar wax wings. Amazing show. We just bought two more females a...
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Cleveland Heights, OH
Is Gooseneck native from Cleveland Heights OH
I live in Cleveland Heights, OH, and have an abundance of gooseneck in my yard. Is it a native plant? Thank you!
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