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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

Commerce, TX
Need native plants for wind block and screening along a fence row in Commerce, TX
I'm looking for a small tree or lg shrub for wind block & screening along a fence row. The soil is black clay with a mostly full sun exposure. Landscaper suggested Elaeagnus but I want a nat...
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Ladonia, TX
Time for planting wildflower seeds in East Texas
I live in northeast Texas, and we have had abundant rains here. Can I plant some wildflower seeds now, and if so, what plants would be appropriate?
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Ladonia, TX
Plant identification
We were at some friends' ranch in Bandera Co. last week and found a plant with 1 inch pea-like pods of a matchstick girth with square black seeds. There were no leaves left only smooth green stems w...
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Sulphur Springs, TX
Identification of possible wild plums thickets
I have several "thickets" of small shrub/bushes on my land that I hunt on. These small trees are usually 5-7 feet tall, always grow in thickets of ten to up to sixty or so bushes. They are always lo...
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Point, TX
Non-flowering mimosas in Texas
I have two mimosa trees, about 3 years old. Both were grown from volunteer seedlings. Neither have flowers nor have they produced seed pods. Are they too young or do they need a source of pollenation...
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Roxton, TX
Alternatives to non-Texas native pin cherry for Texas
Dear Ms. Smarty Plants, I learned that the fire cherry/ pin cherry is a very hardy tree, and that it is very drought resistant. I live in zone 7, on black land, which becomes very dry in the summer. ...
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Emory, TX
Unknown ailment of Turk's cap in northeast Texas
I just moved from the Dallas area to Emory in the north east part. I brought two young Turk's cap plants in pots. I had to leave the mother plant behind. The tops have a very curled and shrunken a...
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Emory, TX
Native Plants for Emory Texas
I live in Emory Texas want to plant native plants in my yard. I am new to Texas and need help.
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Nevada, TX
A year and a half old live oak tree is doing poorly in Nevada, TX.
We planted a live oak tree about a year and a half ago. the tree is still rather small. The leaves are of a vibrant green, however the leave have only grown through the center of the tree and not out...
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Nevada, TX
White ash trees with bunched up leaves from Nevada TX
I have very young white ash trees (3' tall planted this winter) The leaves are crippled not opening up bunched up together and have a white powder. Is this aphids mites or what. Only on one tree. Th...
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Royse City, TX
Wind damage to pecan tree in Royse City, TX
The wind broke my pecan tree trunk in two. It is approximately 2 in caliper and about 15 feet tall. Is there a tree trunk repair?
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Royse City, TX
Identity of Dwarf Oyster Plant.
I purchased a plant from the local Home Depot, and it said on the sticker in was a Dwarf Oyster Plant. I can't seem to find any information on that name, so maybe it was marked wrong. See if you ca...
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Royse City, TX
Keeping dogs and cats out of flower gardens
Do you have any suggestions to keep the cats and dogs out of my flower garden? They either just walk through it, and trample everything, or sleep on the soft blooms and squish everything. I am despe...
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Royse City, TX
Legal to mow wildflowers in HOA in Royse City, TX
We live out in the country in Rockwall County, Texas. Is it legal to mow the wildflowers on our 2 acre lots? The HOA documents we committed to require the homesites to be maintained, but there is di...
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Paris, TX
Need to find a place to buy Western Soapberry in Paris, TX.
Where is the closest place to purchase a Western Soapberry tree?
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Paris, TX
Vinca minor and St. Augustine grass
Will St. Augustine grass choke out vinca minor?
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Paris, TX
Ground cover for south-facing yard in Paris, TX
We are moving to Paris, Tx. Our front yard faces south with 2 large sycamores shading it. Grass has a hard time growing here. I'd like to plant groundcover. Think it's sandy loam. Do you have a...
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Paris, TX
Groundcover for shade in Paris, Texas
I have a south exposure with 2 large sycamore trees. Noon sun in patches and mainly dappled shade but not dense. I'm consideering planting asian ivy. The soil is "sandy loam" but it's very sand...
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Paris, TX
Non-native Philadelphus Innocence mock orange from Paris TX
What is the best place in the garden to grow Philadelphus Innocence mock orange in Paris, Tx? Also, how long after transplanting do flowers occur? Any tips appreciated
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paris, TX
Yellow Indian paintbrush, Castilleja indivisa
Does entireleaf Indian paintbrush, Castilleja indivisa, come in yellow in the wild? I have Indian paintbrush in the front pasture and noticed last weekend that there were 5 or 6 that were light yellow...
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Paris, TX
Ground cover for trails in Northeast Texas
I have several acres of wooded land in Northeast Texas, Southern Lamar County. Both sandy and black land. I have created trails through the woods and would like to plant a native ground cover or gras...
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