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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

Jacksonville, TX
Plants for difficult site in Jacksonville, TX
East Texas (Cherokee County) red clay hillside, hard-packed, difficult to get to, 40' of it slopes 4' down in about 6'! Another 30' of it is flat. Between the hillside and the flat clay area is a...
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Gallatin, TX
Grass for family cemetery in Gallatin TX
Recently, we made a family cemetery, and are now trying to find a type of grass that will make a healthy lawn for it. What would be an appropriate species to plant here?
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Rusk, TX
Yellowing branches on non-native sago palms after freeze in Rusk TX
My Sago Palms experienced a good freeze. Now they have a multitude of yellowing branches, in fact most of the plant is yellow. Please advise what to do to save my plants. They are about nine years ...
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Rusk, TX
Propagation of Prunus Mexicana in Rusk TX
How do you scarify seeds from the Prunus Mexicana? Can the branches be made to grow roots?
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Rusk, TX
Affect of poisonous plant roots in soils for vegetables from Rusk TX
I have a huge old flowerbed in front of my house that I want to plant veggies in, but I'm afraid to. It has a catalpa tree there, which I sell the worms from, but the entire tree (bark, leaves, flowe...
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Whitehouse, TX
Poolside tree for Whitehouse TX
What would you recommend for native shade tree or flowering tree on the north side of a swimming pool in East Texas/Smith County? Trying to avoid too much dropping of flowers, nuts, etc. Looking to ...
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Whitehouse, TX
Source for blue phlox in Whitehouse TX
Where can I purchase blue phlox ground cover? I live ten minutes from Tyler,Tx
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Whitehouse, TX
Milkweed with the biggest pods in Smith County, TX?
I live in East Texas and I would like to know which of the milkweed plants bears the largest seed pod. I would also like to know the best time to locate the pods in and around the Smith County area.
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palestine, TX
Wildflower seeds planted in May for summer in Fairfield, TX
Are there any wildflower seeds which can be planted in May for the summer? I have planted a wildgrass seed mixture I purchased from Turner Seed Company and planted it today (5-2-05). It was supposed...
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LaRue, TX
Ground cover for a sunny location
Looking for Native ground cover for sunny slope in LaRue TX… I would like something that will cover year-round and flower in Spring/Summer/Fall. If it has a berry in the fall for birds and attracts bu...
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LaRue, TX
Why is Hamelia patens, a species listed as invasive, in the Wildflower Center database?
Hamelia patens (Firebush) is listed as an invasive plant at Invasive.Org, the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health, which partners with the US Forest Service, Univ of GA and others. LBJ ...
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LaRue, TX
Ground cover for East Texas
Thank you for your response to (Hamelia), it was very helpful. I recently moved to East Texas and I live in a rural area at altitude 754ft with a sloping landscape with good drainage. My property is...
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LaRue, TX
Groundcover and Butterfly attractants for LaRue Texas
LaRue, TX - Would like a native low growing plant as a groundcover. I would like it for six+ hours of sun, drought tolerant, and ones that butterflies might enjoy, while deer won't. Some winter int...
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Tyler, TX
Plants (mostly non-native) not common to Tyler TX area
I live in Tyler, TX 75705. I always seem to fall in love with plants that are not common for this area so I cannot find information on growing these plants in this area: Esperanza, Alstromeria, Japan...
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Tyler, TX
Tree for area around patio in East Texas
What is the best type of tree to plant around my patio which faces the southeast
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Tyler, TX
Ground cover for shady site in Tyler TX
I live in Tyler Texas and have a lot of shade and sandy soil. No grass will grow and I was wondering if I should look at ground cover instead? If so, what grows in shade and sand? I have tried sever...
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Tyler, TX
Problems with non-native Indian hawthorn
We have some Indian Hawthorns that were planted for us by a landscape company. The first year we got a little bit of bloom. Since then the shrubs don't bloom at all. They are in a flower bed up aga...
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Tyler, TX
Native plants that will grow under alleopathic black walnut
I have a large, beautiful black walnut tree in my yard and have trouble growing the annuals, begonia, impatients, etc., that I have always grown. They don't do well in the ground and I have resorted...
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Tyler, TX
Identification of a wild vine in East Texas
Trying to identify a wild vine that grow 15-20 feet up our trees. The leaves are dark, glossy green about 2-3" long. The edges are smooth and elongated. Each leaf is placed to the right and then the ...
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Tyler, TX
Which Aristolochia species are toxic to pipevine swallowtail larvae
In a May 30, 2008 question regarding the toxicity of certain Aristolochia species to pipevine swallowtail larvae, I had heard the same from at a talk from the curator of the Cockrell Butterfly Center ...
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Tyler, TX
Landscaping around a pear tree in Tyler, TX.
We have a large raised flower bed, approximately ten feet by ten feet, surrounding a mature flowering pear tree. Do you have any suggestions for landscaping with native plants in this bed?
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