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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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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

Questions From Near You

Leburn, KY
Controlling erosion in Leburn KY
I would really appreciate advice on controlling a serious erosion problem in eastern Kentucky. The slope is north facing, shady and moist with rich soil. Would prefer to use native Kentucky plants. ...
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Jenkins, KY
Plant identification for vine in Kentucky
Need to know the name of a plant. It grows in Eastern KY, south WVA and West VA. It grows alone riverbanks and creeks. It is a weed, in the spring it has a white bloom and bees work it like crazy. ...
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Pikeville, KY
Arrows and Hunting Dogs in Kentucky
Mr. Smarty Plants--Is it normal for our arrowwood viburnum to give off a musky odour in the late fall? The smell reminds me of a wet hunting dog.
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Eidson, TN
Trees blooming white in East Tennessee in April
What kind of tree is blooming now, 4\6\10 in the mountains of east TN. They have white blooms?
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Kingsport, TN
Plants to replace poison ivy in Kingsport TN
Am in the process of killing off poison ivy that is growing vigorously. What do you recommend to plant in its place. I don't want to leave area open to other invasive plants. (Yes, poison ivy is a...
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Kingsport, TN
Support for Climbing Hydrangea
This past spring I planted a large climbing hydrangea at the base of a walnut tree which we have had to cut down this fall. The plant was very happy there and I'd like to keep it where it is but don...
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London, KY
Identification of shrub with red berries in Kentucky
I live in Laurel CO, KY. I am trying to identify a shrub/tree. The leaves are green and may turn reddish orange. There are huge pods of red berries hanging.
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Bristol, TN
Need something to compete with Virginia wild rye in Bristol, TN.
I have been working for 4 years to convert a large area of sunny lawn (150' x 40') to a native woodland planting, using native trees, shrubs, flowers and grasses. Although I used seeds of a variety ...
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Bristol, TN
Choosing the right Coreopsis species for Tennessee
I live in Bristol Tennessee and have replaced most of my lawn with native plants. I have been trying to learn more about the Coreopsis genus. In TN, we have C. auriculata, grandiflora, lanceolata, m...
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Bristol, TN
Questions about Catalpa bignonioides
We have a yard that is about 3/4 of an acre, and we have gotten rid of about 3/4 of the lawn and replaced it with native plantings. I am looking for a native tree to replace a tree that we had to rem...
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woodbine, KY
Need plants to cover hillside and control erosion in Woodbine, Kentucky
I live in eastern Kentucky. I have a hillside that is full of weeds how do I get rid of the weeds and what can I plant to cover it. This hillside is not walkable. Is there some kind of vine ? There is...
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Jeffrey, WV
Why is Mr. Smarty Plants website so useless?
Why is your site so useless?
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Richmond, KY
Eliminating kudzu from Richmond KY
I live in Richmond KY, Kirksville area. I have noticed that Kudzu has started to grow in my patch of land next to the creek. How can I get rid of this before it becomes a big problem?
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Ashalnd, KY
Non-native Coleus canina, animal detererrent
I had purchased a plant about 4 years ago at Lowes that I planted in my flower gardens that was a pet deterrent. I cannot remember the name of that plant now? I have spoke to Lowes and others and I am...
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Johnson City, TN
Native flowers for a wedding in June in Tennessee
I am planning a June 6th wedding on our farm. The wedding is in our backyard. I have lots of containers and several beds. Our daughter wants pink, purple, white and blue flowers. I have a greenhouse...
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Johnson City, TN
Pecan tree for Johnson City TN
I live in E. Tennessee and was wondering if there are any pecan trees that can be grown here? If so, which type? I am a native Texan and love pecans. I would appreciate any information you can give ...
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Mosheim, TN
Butterfly garden for TN
Hello! I recently moved into a new house near Mosheim, Tennessee (37818) and I am wanting to start a butterfly garden. I am requesting information how to get this started. What soil, plants, and flowe...
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winchester, KY
Need plants for a slope in KY.
I have a slope in my back yard that is mostly a slate shelf, grass and Weeds will grow but not well, very spotty. I am wanting a ground cover that blooms. Would like to not have to mow. This is a ve...
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Morristown, TN
Plant identification
My husband brought home a plant which I have not been able to id. It is a bush, has 2 ovate to ellipse leaves, whorled, with 4 (2 pairs) smooth thin skinned (you can see white veins under the skin rad...
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Greeneville, TN
Identification of vine with dangling fruit
I live in a hollow with rolling hills all around. there are wild grape vines, wild cherry trees, walnut trees, rasberry canes, black berry canes, a persimmon tree,(the asgtringent kind), maples, hicor...
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Ironton, OH
Identification of vine in Ohio
We were in our school's back yard and we found a vine that has green leaves and has a purple stem and we were just trying to figure out what is was? Can you help us out with that!
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