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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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

Edom, TX
Erosion under a Live Oak in Edom TX
We have a large Live Oak tree in the front yard that I wouldn't part with for the world. The soil is almost solid sand underneath the tree, and in deep shade. It is on a slight slope and eroding wi...
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Chandler, TX
Injury while pulling weeds in Chandler TX
I stabbed my self this last weekend when pulling roots from a bed so i'm not sure what it was. At the time it was a sharp pain so I pulled off my glove to look at it,barely scratched the skin so on I...
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Van, TX
Need suggestions for a privacy screen besides Murray Cypress.
Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in NE TX, about an hour east of Dallas on I-20. I hear interstate traffic behind my house, and have a busy street on its left side, and a school adjoining in back. I thi...
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Van, TX
Identity of mystery plant in non-native commercial forage mix
Dear Smart One, I use a commercially prepared, fortified, chopped forage based on a mix of orchard and Timothy grasses. The bags are shipped in from out of State. However, I have been finding short s...
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Van, TX
Need information about broadcasting wildflower seeds in a pasture 70 miles east of Dallas, TX.
We recently moved to upper east TX - 70 miles East of Dallas. I would like to broadcast wildflowers in our pasture. I'm assuming I'll need to wait until next fall, but not sure about that. Can you t...
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Van, TX
Contacts for finding wildflowers in Texas
Do you have a website or phone number for updates to find blooming wildflowers?
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Murchison, TX
Plant identification
I have found what resembles a gooseberry growing from what appears to be a grapevine trellising on a fence beside a lake in East Texas. The stems are smooth and slender, nad as I stated before vine up...
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Lindale, TX
Is Sedum recommended for a greenroof project in Houston
Would you recommend using Sedum for a green roof project in Houston, Texas? Will the humidity effect the sedum? If sedum would be a poor choice, what would you recommend for Houston?
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Lindale, TX
Care for non-native Centipede grass
My lawn is Centipede. I have created a new lawn area. Can and when should I seed/overseed my lawn? I have Rye in the new area.
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New York, TX
Ground cover for East Texas
I live in the country of east Texas and wish to grow native ground covers around my house and property. I have no way to control this growth, as I have no fences or borders. I have sandy soil and th...
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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
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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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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Athens, TX
Grasses for Van Zandt County, Texas
We have approx'ly 200 acres in Van Zandt County, Texas between Edom & Ben Wheeler of which approx'ly half is pasture land and has been used for hay for the past several years. We would have convert...
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Athens, TX
What plants grow well in Athens, TX?
Athens, Texas, we have very sandy soil mixed with clay, what plants grow well here?
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Athens, TX
Have deer eaten the flowers of my Esperanza?
My wife and I planted an Esperanza plant and it seemed to be doing well. It had numerous blossoms and we were excited at the prospect of having a beautiful plant that was alledgedly a "deer proof" ...
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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
Worms in wild plums
Wild Plums... They are just starting to get ripe here in East Texas. Picked a few today and they all had dark spots on them. When I cut them open there were tiny worms inside. Does this mean they a...
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Tyler, TX
Bluebonnets in East Texas
I would love to introduce Bluebonnets onto a piece of property in East Texas. We have very sandy soil. Which species should I plant, the Lupinus Texensis or the Lupinus Subcarnosus?
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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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