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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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Questions From Near You

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
Red selection of Coreopsis Tinctoria from Austin
Red tall plains coreopsis is being sold @ Eden Bros. THey note it is a native, can grow to zone 10, but they say it is "not heat or drought toleranr". Cannot find verification or rebuttal anywhere. ...
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Austin, TX
Weed identification
Weeds / Wildflower. I dream of a photo identification for weeds / wildflowers that pop up in my garden here in Austin, Texas. Maybe I don't want to pull them up. How do I know? Do you know of a b...
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Austin, TX
Problems with rock rose in Austin
Hi Mr Smarty Pants, We have a Texas Rock Rose which is growing next to our gravel path in Austin, with grass growing under it. In the last week, it has stopped blooming suddenly, and all the leaves h...
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Austin, TX
Source for chile pequin plants in Austin
Where can I buy chile pequin plants in Austin? Thank you,
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Austin, TX
Purple leatherflower with white bloom
A couple of years ago at the wildflower center native plant sale I bought a purple leatherflower according to the tag. This is the first year it has bloomed and the blooms are pure white. The shape ma...
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Austin, TX
Seeding success with Penstemon cobaea from Austin
I've never had much luck in harvesting seeds from foxgloves (Penstemon cobaea, I think). Whenever I open the seed casing, the seeds inside are covered with some kind of mold. What's going on, and ho...
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Austin, TX
Can Monterrey Oak be topped into a bush from Austin TX
I received a suggestion to use Monterey oak as privacy hedge by topping the small tree and letting it bush. I can't find any pictures or info on this being done though.
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Austin, TX
Brown blade tips on Habiturf from Austin
After carefully following all the directions, II recently planted Habiturf and it's growing well. After the first mowing, however, we discovered the top half of the blades turned brown. We have a pus...
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Austin, TX
Need a 2-4 ft shrub for the shady NW side of the house in Austin, TX
I am looking for a 2-4 ft tall shrub or hedge to plant along the NW side of my house, which is shaded by a live oak. This area doesn't get any direct sun. I wondered if a row of Winter Gem Boxwoods ...
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Austin, TX
Replacing St. Augustine with native grass in Austin
We are renting a house our Sister-in-law owns- the St Augustine is in tough shape, drought and lack of care over the years. Could we plant a native grass or do we have to pull up the remaining St. Aug...
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Austin, TX
Difference between soil moisture and water use from Austin
In the native plant data base "growing conditions" can you explain the difference between water use and soil moisture?
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Austin, TX
Do I need to cover my Habiturf planting with straw?
I'm preparing to seed the Habiturf in my front yard in a couple of weeks. My dad has suggested I spread some straw to help protect the seeds. Your thoughts? Thanks!!!
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Austin, TX
Planting fruit and nut trees in Mason County, TX
Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I have 36 acres 15 miles west of the city of Mason TX. I wish to plant one acre plots of sustainable organic crops that are long term and hardy. (cost and effort not an iss...
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Austin, TX
Is Bignonia capreolata (crossvine) poisonous?
I need to know whether any part of Crossvine (Bignonia capreolata) is poisonous. Am thinking of planting it at an Elder Day Center for people with memory problems and the director insists - no toxic ...
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Austin, TX
low-growing evergreen shrubs for thin soil
Thanks to the winter freeze, we'll be starting fresh with the plants in the bed along the front of our house. The bed is about 13' long and faces the west, so it gets afternoon/ evening sun but no ...
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Austin, TX
Planting wildflowers in spring for spring bloom
I was wondering if it is possible to plant wildflowers around this time of year, and expect them to bloom in the spring still? I have heard that many wildflowers germinate in the fall. Are there c...
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Austin, TX
Lawn fertilizer in Austin
My lawn person wants to spread granulated spring fertilizer on my lawn. Problem is I have a very old Live Oak tree that I do not want to kill. What should I avoid spreading on my lawn to prevent t...
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Austin, TX
Can Habiturf be planted by hydroseeding from Austin?
We are thinking about seeding our lawn with HABITURF. Could you provide any input on whether HABITURF can be planted by hydroseeding? Thanks!
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Austin, TX
Groundcover for Austin yard
My main goal is to cover my yard with a "grass" or groundcover that can handle the Texas heat, predicted long drought and some dog paw traffic (without going dormant/brown in the winter). I don't n...
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