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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

Houma, LA
Strange produce from non-native lemon seed in Houma LA
I grow a lemon tree from a seed. I grafted it from the same tree a year or so later. It is 15 years old and it only produce one year. The question is, the year it produce, the fruit was a pink grap...
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Houma, LA
Planting petunias around base of oak tree from Houma LA
I live in south Louisiana and I want to plant petunias. Can I plant petunias around the base of an oak tree?
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Thibodaux , LA
Plants beneath native bald cypress trees in Thibodaux LA
I have a bed that needs to be revamped and it has two beautiful 18 year old Bald cypress trees. I would like to work the soil and plant some appropriate shade tolerant plants. How do I work the soil...
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Golden Meadow, LA
Identification of plant with seed heads like goat head
Sir, I collected some bizarre seed heads from some rough weeds around a stock tank in SE New Mexico. They resemble goat heads, with two long curving horns. I have photos but couldn't figure out how ...
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La Place, LA
Problems with purple passion flower
Hello, I live in La Place, Louisiana (30 miles west of New Orleans). In March 2007, I planted a purple passion flower (maypop). During the spring it thrived and was covered with brilliant green le...
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Waggaman, LA
Plant identification
I have a plant that was in a funeral arrangement. The plant has green leaves with darker green spots on it. I do not know what kind of plant it is, nor do I know how much light the plant needs on a ...
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Metairie, LA
Why is my yaupon tree not producing berries in Metairie La?
What is the lifespan of a Yaupon Tree? We live in Louisiana, and our Yaupon would always get the white flowers in the Spring but never the red berries. Why is that?
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metairie, LA
Are banana plants poisonous to dogs in Metarie, LA?
Can a dog die from eating a banana plant that I have growing in my yard?
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Harvey, LA
Plant Groups
What are ways to group plants?
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New Orleans, LA
Is Florida anisetree appropriate for school planting in New Orleans?
Illicium floridanum, Florida anisetree We are considering using this plant for a landscape at a school. I have been informed that it is poisonous, but not by a reliable source. I am otherwise very...
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New Orleans, LA
Wildflower seeding for hurricane-damaged areas of New Orleans
I need some information. I am going to be traveling to New Orleans in two weeks to visit a relative. They are in an area that was decimated by the hurricane. Though they have rebuilt the neighborho...
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New Orleans, LA
Acacia tree that will grow in Louisiana
Please tell me if there are any Acacia Trees that will grow in direct sun in Louisiana. I really want to plant some from seeds but don't which to get for zone 8. Thank you Mr Smarty Plants
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New Orleans, LA
Grafting Shumard Oak to Decrease Acorn Bearing Age in New Orleans
Can a Shumard Oak that is bearing acorns (30 yrs. old)be grafted to a seedling in order to decrease the bearing of the tree in a similar manner as grafting pecan trees? Can it be propagated by any me...
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New Orleans, LA
More on bluebonnets
We would like to know if the bluebonnet wildflowers are suitable for New Orleans and, if so, which months should they be seeded. Otherwise what can you suggest for our humid climate. We like blue, lav...
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New Orleans, LA
Source for non-native mimosa plants in New Orleans
We need potted mimosa plants for an installation in New Orleans. I hope you can help me or know of anyone who could help me with that. If so please let me know how much and how fast I can get about 1...
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Gonzales, LA
Evergreen groundcover in Louisiana
I need a suggestion for an evergreen groundcover plant that can tolerate moist soil. I want something that is low maintenance to go around a pergola in my backyard that gets mostly full sun.
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Prairieville, LA
Viability of Texas Mountain Laurel in Louisiana
I just returned from a visit to Austin and I saw the Texas Mountain Laurel everywhere. I live in the Baton Rouge, LA area and would like to know if performing some soil amendments would allow me to gr...
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Prairieville, LA
Removal of pups from Century Plant after blooming in Prairieville LA
Will the main part of the century plant always die after it grows a stalk? I have babies coming off the base and need to know if I should separate them to keep them alive.
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Prairieville, LA
Toxicity of Lupinus ssp. (bluebonnets)
Are bluebonnets toxic to cattle?
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Walker, LA
Timing for transplanting a yaupon in Louisiana
I found a female yaupon growing wild at the back of my property and would like to move it to the front. When should I do this?
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Denham Springs, LA
Identification of vine in Louisiana
I have two vines in my backyard. I've looked at pictures of each and they both keep coming up "virginia creeper." However, both are different. Neither causes an allergic reaction. One has leaflets ...
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