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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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Plano, TX
Good evergreen screen and some shade plants for Plano Texas
We live in Plano Texas. We have 15' between our house and our neighbor. We want to plant a divider/screen of something evergreen, about 6-15' (6-8' is better) and narrow, about 2-3' wide between t...
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Plano, TX
Plants for a container bog garden in North Texas
I live in Plano, just north of Dallas. I've developed a recent interest in water gardens and am considering getting my toes wet with a container bog garden. I have an old galvanized wash tub that I...
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Plano, TX
Landscape planning in Plano TX
I am devouring everything on your website and am so grateful that you put your knowledge and experience out there for all of us. Thank you!! I am trying to make a landscape plan for our Plano, TX b...
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Plano, TX
Cotton plant for yard in Plano
I wish to plant a specimen cotton plant in my yard - will it grow in Plano, Texas, do you have any tips for maintaining them, and will they survive freezing temperatures?
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Plano, TX
Plants for area around pool in Plano, Texas
I just built an in ground pool in Plano, Texas and now want to landscape around it on my own. I am curious what plants/shrubs you recommend. There will be plants/shrubs on three sides of the pool. ...
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Plano, TX
Eliminating bluebonnets from lawn
I need to know the best way to eliminate bluebonnets which are growing in my yard. My HOA is pursuing legal action against me to prevent me growing the plants. I can't afford to "resod" my yard. Ca...
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Plano, TX
Peeling bark on red oak in Plano, TX
I have a red oak that was planted 2 years ago. The trunk is approx. 5 in around. The bark around the bottom of the trunk is peeling off. At first we thought it was rabbits so we put some rabbit gua...
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Plano, TX
Wildflower seeds that do well in black clay soil from Plano TX
What native wildflower seeds do best in black clay soil? We live in Plano along creek w/ 8,000 sq. ft. in full sun. No manmade water source. Suggestions?
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Plano, TX
Toxicity of horticultural oils
Is T&S dormant oil spray a toxic product? Our church (Prairie Creek Baptist in Plano, Texas) is transitioning to organic/native landscape. This is the product used by the current lawn service. Also, ...
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Plano, TX
Livestock Watering Tanks Used for Container Gardening at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
We would like to use livestock watering tanks like the ones use the the Wildflower Center for plantings in our backyard in Plano, Texas. We have found some to purchase in McKinney, Texas. What do we n...
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Plano, TX
Best place for picking wildflowers in Austin
Where is the best place to find wildflowers for picking near or in Austin around the end of March?
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Plano, TX
Using Native Plants Database to determine flowering time in Austin
How can I access your data base to learn what plants are flowering in Austin during the months of October and early November?
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Plano, TX
Compact possumhaw holly for Plano TX
What variety of possumhaw holly would be best planted close to a house? I'm looking for a variety 15-25 feet, as compact as possible. Any suggestions?
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PLANO, TX
Need help diagnosing a problem with Bur Oak in Plano, TX
I planted a bur oak 8 or 9 years ago. It has grown beautifully until this year. When opening, the leaves are very small (a couple inches) and there are lots of seeds (catkins?). I would hate to los...
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Plano, TX
Prosopsis velutina (velvet mesquite), Larrea tridentata (creosote bush), rain smell
I am an El Paso native living in Plano TX. I terribly miss the smell of rain in El Paso and have learned that this smell is due to the velvet mesquite tree and also the creosote bush, among other thi...
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Plano, TX
Bur oak defoliation
I have a bur oak that was planted in 1993. In 2000, I had mortared stone edging (approx 5 inches deep) installed around the trunk from 4 to 6 feet away. In the last 3 years, the tree seems to be decli...
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Plano, TX
Are Eve's Necklace seeds poisonous to dogs from Plano TX
Are the seed pods on eve's necklace poisionous to dogs?
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Plano, TX
Help, I know nothing!
Where can I find someone who can give me advice on my flowers, plants, trees and shrubs? I bought a house with a lot of flower beds containing many different varieties of greenery and don't know...
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Plano, TX
Perennial plants for butterfly garden
Hello, I live in Plano, TX and I am trying to create a backyard garden which will attract butterflies. I prefer bulbs and perennials so that I will not have to replant again and again like annuals. A...
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Plano, TX
Tropical plants for pool landscape in Plano TX
I have a small yard with a pool that I would like to tropically landscape. It faces west (lots of direct sun) and there is about a 3 foot parameter between the fence and the coping. Currently I have...
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Plano, TX
Will molasses harm beneficial organisms in my garden?
If I use molasses in the garden, I am hoping this will NOT kill the beneficial nematodes and my earth worms, or other good bugs such as lady bugs? Thanks.
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