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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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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

Questions From Near You

Grand Prairie, TX
Plants to replace Phragmites australis (Common reed) in Cedar Ridge Preserve
Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in the DFW area and volunteer at a preserve (Cedar Ridge). We are constantly battling the common reed, Phragmites australis, around the pond. I am wondering what shou...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Sheet mulching before planting Habiturf from Grand Prairie, TX
Have you tried sheet mulching as a bed prep and to kill bermuda grass before planting habituff?
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Grand Prairie, TX
Source for Texas Star hibiscus from Grand Prairie TX
I am having a lot of difficulty in trying to find and purchase a Texas Hibiscus. Any clues?
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Grand Prairie, TX
Plant similar to a cattail
I don't know where this plant grows normally, but I am looking for a plant that is similar to a cat tail, but the petals are not feathery, they are red and waxy and the petals are round almost. Plea...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Lack of Fruit on Forestiera
I have not been able to get berry production on my elbow bush. I have male and female plants. Is it possible to help with the pollination process? Thank you.
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Grand Praire, TX
City tree ordinance information
Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I am writing to you in regards to city tree ordinances. I am a citizen of Grand Prairie, TX. and although the city is a Tree City, the city does not have a tree ordinance. T...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Most common wildflower in Texas from Grand Prairie TX
What is the most common wildflower in the state of Texas? My kiddos stumped me on this one?
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Grand Prairie, TX
Pecan tree dropping limbs in Grand Prairie, TX.
Our 15 year old pecan tree is losing it's limbs. The tree and its leaves look healthy with no signs of bugs or mites, but all the limbs are drooping and breaking off. The tree did have a bumper crop ...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Neighborhood association wanting wildflowers mowed from Grand Prairie TX
For at least 15 years, I have been fostering growth of wildflowers in 60% of my 90x400' yard which include 150' utility trunkline easement in which I can plant no trees. This year, we had volunteer ...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Drought-resistant plants for Grand Prairie, TX
Can you tell me where I may obtain a list of drought-resistant plants for landscaping?
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Grand Prairie, TX
Native grasses for shade in Dallas
What native grasses can be grown under large Live Oaks in the Dallas Area? The combination of shade and black gumbo soil seem to keep all plant life, except for poison ivy and ferns, out. I would lo...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Controlling Phragmites australis, common reed
Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I volunteer at Cedar Ridge Preserve in Dallas. We are currently chopping down an invasive called Phragmites australis around the pond. The belief is that by continuously cho...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Wildflowers to see at Wildflower Center in September
My wife and I will be coming to Austin for the Quilt Show September 29, 2006. Will the wild flowers and gardens still be active? We would very much like to visit if there would still be plenty to se...
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Grand Prairie, TX
Identifying a plant/weed blooming in Feb. in Texas
Can you help me identify a flowering plant I have found growing in my yard? It is a tiny green plant most months of the year, with very tiny deep to pastel blue flowers on it in early spring ( it is i...
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Euless , TX
Plant identification
I don't know if they are native or not, My mom bought some plants at an event at the Dallas Convention Center that all had rocks and little dirt that they sat on. The bases of the plants were large a...
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DFW, TX
Identification of prickly vine in north Texas
While trimming the shrubs around my suburban house I noticed (and my legs were torn up by!) a vine-like plant with small green serrated leaves and millions of small, very sharp thorns. I search Invasi...
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Euless, TX
Determining male/female wax myrtles
We are planning to use Wax Myrtle as a screen plant, and want to be sure that we are successful in having berries for the birds. We have read that berries are only on the female plants. When we aske...
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Euless, TX
Yaupons not showing berries in Euless, TX
From all I have read, Possumhaw holly is supposed to have berries only on the female. However I have been told and read conflicting things about whether you must have both a male & female in order f...
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Euless, TX
Identification of vine with red flowers, fern-like leaves
Last year I saw a plant at the State Fair. It had small fern like leaves to it with beautiful little red flowers. It was a vine plant of some sort. They told me that it was native to the Hill Countr...
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Euless, TX
Mosquito repelling plants from Euless TX
Are there any shade loving plants that repel mosquitoes for North Central Texas? I checked your site and saw nothing on this topic.
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Euless, TX
Wax myrtle for screening in Euless, TX
We live in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. We need something to use as a screen along our back fence, to block the view of our neighbor's storage building. We are looking for a tall shrub that we can s...
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