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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!

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Questions From Near You

Taylor, TX
Problems with winecups in Taylor, TX
I live in Taylor in Williamson County, Tx,. I have wine cups growing. They are lush and blooming, but I am now noticing what looks like spores forming under the leaves and the plants seem to be suffer...
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Taylor, TX
Mystic Spires salvia in transplant shock
Hello. I live in Taylor, Tx. Just outside Austin, Texas. I recently planted mystic spires. One gallons and will receive the hot afternoon sun. All the research says they can tolerate this location. Th...
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Taylor, TX
Disease-resistant squash varieties for Central Texas
Can you give me names of some disease-resistant summer squash varieties available in Central Texas?
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Taylor, TX
Karoo rose
Where would the Adenium obesum/desert rose/Karoo rose pictured in the Austin American-Statesman's Gardening section on 06/09/07 be available for purchase in or near the Taylor, Texas (76574) area?
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Taylor, TX
Live oak trees buzzing in Taylor TX
Is it possible for live oak trees to make a buzzing sound? We have heard this sound under our live oak and were worried it was bees but we don't seem to see any. I also heard the buzzing under my mot...
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Taylor, TX
Replacing lawn in Taylor, Texas
I live in Taylor, Texas, just northeast of Austin, in the Blackland Prairie region. However, I do not live on a farm, but in town on a city lot of 1/3 acre. My soil is clayey, and currently I have a L...
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Taylor, TX
Care of Styphnolobium affine, Eves necklace
I have an 18 yr old Eve's Necklace tree that is dying from the "bottom up". It has only a few leaves at the very top of the tree. I have, connected to the gutter, a rain barrel from which the exc...
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Taylor, TX
Would there be wild buffalo grass (Bouteloua dactyloides) growing in Williamson County?
Greetings, I have done a "test planting" of buffalo grass in my yard. There are now some blooms (?) on the grass and I have noticed similar blooms on grass in two different places in the area (Tay...
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Taylor, TX
Picture of fungus on winecups in Taylor TX
My error! I rated your answer to my question as 3 stars. I did not know how the rating worked and I accidentally chose 3. Your response was great. I would like to send you a picture of the spores/f...
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Taylor, TX
Thornless honeylocust trees for Taylor TX
I live in Taylor, Williamson County, in central Texas and I am interested in selecting trees for my backyard. I can't really explain (it may be my Midwestern roots), but I would like to plant three t...
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Taylor, TX
Growing non-native Cabernet Sauvignon vines in Central Texas
Hi. I recently moved into a remodeled home in Taylor, TX, and have experimented with Cabernet Savignon vines before. I have a 1/2 acre and a chain-link fence I want to put vines on. (I have a book o...
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Taylor, TX
Coloration problems with non-native nandinas and queens wreath in Taylor, TX
This year my nandinas are extremely red and my queen's wreath blossoms deepened in color before the first freeze browned them out. What would cause this? Thank you.
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Round Rock, TX
Protection of Mountain Laurel from Pyralid or Genista moth caterpillars
I have a Texas Mountain Laurel. Every year it is attacked by caterpillars. They form a bag for lack of a better word on the ends of the branches destroying the blooms for the following year. PLEASE...
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Round Rock, TX
Native plants for seasonal poor drainage
I have an area in my front yard that has a drainage ditch running through it. When it rains, that area stays very wet. What kind of plants available for sale will work in this situation?
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Round Rock, TX
Difficulties in growing iris in Central Texas
I live in Round Rock TX. I would like to plant Irises and have failed before. What type of irises grow best here? When should I plant them and should I add something to the soil to help them grow? ...
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Round Rock, TX
Problems with non-native closet plant
I have three closet plants. All are putting on new growth and even blooming. However, the leaves are turning brown from the edges. What is the problem?
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Round Rock, TX
Non-native poinsettia care
I have a poinsettia that I have nursed from last Christmas. It is in big pot and looks really good. I'm trying to make it bloom. I have it out front with a sw exposure. I'm afraid of too much sun...
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Round Rock, TX
How can I distinguish between Wax Myrtle and Dwarf Wax Myrtle?
I need help identifying between a southern wax myrtle and a dwarf wax myrtle. I am after the bigger type and think my landscaper accidentally put in dwarves. How can I tell? I had 8 put in and their l...
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RoundRock, TX
Care and fruiting time of pumpkins
This is my first year growing pumpkin. I have a good vine with flowers now & then, but I still don't see a little pumpkin forming. What am I doing wrong?
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Round Rock, TX
Chinaberry trees coming up volunteer
I have several chinaberry trees that have sprouted after my neighbor trimmed his tree. I have cut these trees down to the ground a couple of times, but they just send out new shoots. Any idea on how...
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Round Rock, TX
Fertilizer and application for live oak trees
What do I use to feed live oak trees? How do I apply the fertilzer?
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