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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

Mikado, MI
Possible identification of Physocarpus opulifolius
Can you please tell me what kind of tree has a maple leaf and a white snowball flower?The young and very small tree was already here when i bought my home,it stands only 7 feet tall with a 2 inch t...
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Harrisville, MI
Planting under Walnut Trees in Harrisville, MI.
I have 2 50+ yr old Black Walnut trees in Northern Michigan (zone 4). I am planting a new bed (raised of course) and was considering adding a hydrangea. I am curious if this will thrive due to the jug...
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Rose City, MI
Identification of poisonous shrub native to Michigan
This is found throughout the northern portion of the LP and in the UP. It grows to 3' as a shrub. It's leaves twigs and flowers ARE POISONOUS! It blooms in the Spring and can be found in the sun and...
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Alpena, MI
Inadvisability of introducing American Beautyberry to Michigan
I recently brought back to Michigan from Florida 2 young beauty berry plants. I currently have them in a pot inside my home. They are growing quite well, and show a hearty appearance. What are th...
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Lewiston, MI
Identity of a pink-flowering bush with flowers like sweet peas
I have found a pink flowering small tree / bush that has picky branches kind of looks like sweet pea flowers and the leaves kind of look like shumac. Growing near the thick woods of northern MI
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Port Austin, MI
Madrones in Michigan?
Will a Arbutus menziesii (Pursh Pacific madrone) grow in Huron County Michigan? I'm at the "tip of Michigan's thumb".
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Posen, MI
Identification of wild shrub in Michigan
I have what appears to be a wild shrub that I want to identify. It has green foliage and is bush-like. It is about 10' tall. This fall I noticed light red berries and thorns..after cutting it down...
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Johannesburg, MI
Trillium phototropism
I'm SURE you haven't had this question before. I live in northern Michigan in a wooded subdivision where we have clouds of wild grandiflorum trilliums growing in the woods on either side of the roa...
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Gladwin, MI
Plants for a pond bank in Gladwin MI
Our acre-size pond bank is sloped and high maintenance--needs mowed. We have lots of deer. We would like to plant a low-lying ground cover to eliminate mowing the bank--any suggestions?
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Beaverton , MI
Transplanting a Dutchman's pipe in Beaverton MI
When can I transplant a full grown dutchmans pipe plant? It is growing along side of the house and it needs a bigger place to grow. This is June and the plant is in full bloom full of pipes, but need...
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Rogers City, MI
Need pruning advice in northern Michigan
Is it OK to prune my evergreen bushes and holly in October in northern Michigan?
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ELMIRA, MI
Evergreen privacy hedge and drought-resistant garden
I am looking for a hardy evergreen hedge for privacy in Northern Michigan. I have sandy soil. Also am interested in planting a drought garden with mostly sun in same sandy soil.
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Midland, MI
Evergreens for a deer corridor in MI
I am growing three rows of evergreens for a wildlife, deer travel corridor, and am looking for which trees grow well together and are shade tolerant of each other when planted at the same time, or at ...
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Indian River, MI
Looking for a source of bracken fern seed.
I`m looking to buy "bracken fern"seed. Or can it be transplanted from the wild?
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Saginaw, MI
Identification of Cercis canadensis or Cornus florida
I have what I think is a dogwood tree of some sort but I'm not sure. I wondered if I sent you a picture you could identify it. So far no one has. It's different because of its branches. They are red...
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Saginaw, MI
Growth of yucca from seed pods from Saginaw MI
How do you grow a yucca plant from the pods? Do I need to dry out the pods first?
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Rapid City, MI
Invasive, non-native Cirsium arvense in Michigan
I have identified that I have growing abundantly "Canada Thistle";the noxious and invasive. I know this to be true because where it grows nothing else grows; not even the native weeds. I want to get...
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Mt Pleasant, MI
Dogwood under a black walnut in Mt.Pleasant MI
Can I grow red or yellow twigged dogwood near a black walnut?
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Mt. Pleasant, MI
Plant identification
6 2 ft. spikes appeared in an infertile part of my garden. They have a huge quantity of very tiny ochid-like flowers, mostly white with pink tinge. I took it to the master gardeners here and no one co...
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Cheboygan, MI
Native plants for memorial garden in Michigan
I want to start a memorial garden for my daughter. I live in northern Michigan and the area has very tall white pines we have pruned them up about 15' so the area does get partial sun. Which plants w...
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Kewadin, MI
Deer resistant low-lying plants for Michigan
I want to create a bed of low lying plants (under 4 ft.)in the front of my cottage. The soil is completely sandy and gets eastern sun in the AM. There are many deer in the area.
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