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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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Del Valle , TX
Plants that survive Central Texas weather
What type of plants survive the Central Texas region weather for summer and winter?
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Del Valle, TX
Replanting members of Rosaceae family in same spot
HI Mr. Smarty Plants We had two apple (yellow fruit) trees besides out house and they died. Is it ok to replant in the same place with other trees without being afraid something is wrong with the soi...
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Austin, TX
Trimming of turkscap
I have a Mexican Turk's cap, it is in its second year of growth and is doing well. However, I feel a need to prune it? do I need to?
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Austin, TX
Early nectar blooms for Monarch butterflies from Austin
Could you tell me any early spring blooming nectar plants that monarchs will nectar from. I'm specifically looking for bloom times in March and early April. I have plenty of May blooms but not ...
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Austin, TX
Butterfly plants from Austin TX
I have a butterfly garden in the front part of the house facing the south side. However it is also mostly under a few Oak trees that cast shadow over half of the front yard starting early afternoon. ...
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Austin, TX
Texas native shade plants for metal troughs in Austin
Interested in finding Texas natives that would do well in metal troughs in the shade.
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Austin, TX
Webs on limbs of evergreen sumac from Austin
We have a mature Evergreen Sumac (Rhus virens) that has spider webs on the end of some limbs. The end of the those limbs have died although new growth is coming on further up the limb. We live in th...
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Austin, Tx., TX
Restoring a prairie from Austin
Restoring a mixed grass Blackland Prairie? Prairie Plant Succession? We are trying to establish climax species when an area is in a pioneering phase. Does the soil chemistry or biota change during ...
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Austin, TX
Words of Appreciation
This is a word of sincere admiration and appreciation for the spectacular array of information you posted on liatris. I'm no botanist but a native plant gardener, fond of the beauty of orderly scient...
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Austin, TX
How are NPIN Deer Resistance Ratings Determined?
If your plant data-base (which is the best thing since sliced bread!) is silent on the degree to which a plant is deer-resistant, does this mean you just don't have enough information to make the cal...
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Austin, TX
Control of invasive sandburs in Austin
My attempts to control / eradicate Sanbur with pre-emergent corn gluten twice yeary for the last three years have been unsuccessful. My post emergent pulling weeds for 15 years has also been unsucces...
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Austin, TX
Is cenizo (Leucophyllum frutescens) edible?
I found a post here about cenizo leaves being used for tea, but I'm wondering if the leaves of the cenizo are edible? I have found many recipes for 'brown butter sage' leaves (sauteed often with on...
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Austin, TX
Appropriate use of redbud from Austin
I am considering purchasing a hearts of gold redbud; I am also xeriscaping my front yard. I live in Austin,TX. Will this tree do ok in full Tx sun (8+ hours) with once a week watering? If this...
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Austin, TX
Lighting for the Wildflower Center from Austin
Hello Mr Smarty, On a recent night trip to the Center, there was an oak that was beautifully lit for the holidays. It seemed to come from one ground light, but cast hundreds of glistening "stars"...
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Austin, TX
Fast-growing ground cover for creekside
Hi Mr. Smarty Plants. I live in Austin Texas and am looking for an aggressively spreading ground cover or grass to plant along a small creek on the back of my property in order to help with soil er...
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Austin, TX
Live oak leaves not dropping from Austin
We had a 65 gallon live oak planted last October. We watered it regularly and it was green all through the winter. In March the leaves started to turn brown but never dropped, as they should have. ...
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Austin, TX
Sources for native plants from Austin TX
Hello. I am currently planning a Texas native plant garden. Unfortunately, I cannot seem to find the seeds/bulbs/roots/plants for some of the natives at local nurseries: Indian Ricegrass (Achnatherum ...
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Austin, TX
Planting fields with wildflowers
I'm hoping to seed a few fields (large area, short grass) the easiest way possible. I'd love to do bluebonnets but I don't think I can get a large aerator to the locations. Basically I'm wonderi...
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Austin, TX
Weeds in Habiturf from Austin
We had our old lawn removed, tilled, laid compost, and Habiturf seed spread. I'm not sure if the man we contracted to do the work didn't adequately remove the old weed debris when he prepared the la...
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Austin, TX
Roses for Austin soil
What roses would work in the soil near Lake Austin Spa?
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Austin, TX
Aging Arizona Ash in Austin
Mr. Smarty Plants! I live in South Austin and just bought a house with a large, 30-40 year old Arizona Ash in the backyard. When I moved in, most of the lower branches were bare and dead and so I had ...
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