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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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Questions From Near You

Round Rock,, TX
Starting Antelope Horn Milkweed Seeds
I recently found a sealed plastic bag containing milkweed seeds in a cabinet drawer that I had gathered more than a year ago, (maybe two years ago). These are the "antelope horn" milkweed I think it...
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Round Rock , TX
What blueberry cultivar is best for Austin, TX.
How do I know what blueberry bush to purchase for the best tasting variety that will grow in the Austin, TX area?
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Round rock , TX
Propagation of Blackfoot daisy seed
I have a three yr old Blackfoot daisy. How do you root Blackfoot daisy seeds? When is the best month to grow these seeds?
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Round Rock , TX
Propagation of native plants by seed in Round Rock TX
I'm trying to include more native and adapted low water use plants in the landscaping of my yard in Round Rock Texas. Due to a limited budget I've been collecting seeds from plants around the area ...
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Round Rock,, TX
Use of free cedar mulch in Round Rock, TX
Round Rock provides city residents free mulch to pick up. It is all cedar apparently. I am turning my now dead, mostly clay, very alkaline and rocky thin soil front lawn into a bigger flower bed of mo...
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Round Rock, TX
Fiber and dye plants at the Wildflower Center from Round Rock TX
When I visited the Wildflower Center recently I noticed a garden labeled as containing fiber and dye plants, but the individual plants and their uses were not all labeled. I would be very interested ...
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Round Rock, TX
Plants for hanging baskets in Austin
Can you suggest some plants for winter hanging baskets in the Austin, TX area?
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Round Rock, TX
Unknown pest of Texas Mountain Laurel from Round Rock TX
I have a Texas Mountain Laurel that is being denuded from the top down by something unseen. It's not the Genista moth larvae, as there are no worms and no webbing visible. The only clue that it might...
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Round Rock, TX
Red blister-like bumps on grapevine
I have just discovered red blister like bumps on a grapevine. It is on the leaves as well as the stems. What could this be? Will it harm only the grapevine or other plants as well? Thank you.
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Round Rock, TX
Pruning of overgrown non-native boxwood from Round Rock TX
We have several large over-grown Japanese Boxwoods that we'd really like to trim down in height about 10 to 12 inches, however most of the middle and lower sections of the bushes are bare or very spa...
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Round Rock, TX
Blackfoot daisy turning brown in Round Rock, TX
A few days ago, our blackfoot daisy was doing wonderfully. Then we got heavy rains and suddenly the plant is sere and brown. Did the too wet weather do this, and will it come back next year?
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Round Rock, TX
Coconut in a husk from Round Rock TX
Looking for a coconut in its complete husk ?
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ROUND ROCK, TX
Plants for a children's playground
We have extensive native gardens on our 2 acre property, but my children want a garden of their own with plants they can hide under and that are good for imaginative play. Are there any native plants...
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Round Rock, TX
Non-native, invasive Rapistrum rugosum
What is the name of the alien, spindly, yellow mustard that we see blooming around Austin now ? Is it Hedge Mustard (Sisymbrium officinale) ?
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Round Rock, TX
Difference between invasive Chinese and Japanese wisterias and native wisteria
Dear Mr or Ms Smarty Plants, Is there any way I can tell for sure if my wisteria is native? I bought it at a place when it was in bloom that sold a lot of native plants. I Would like to know for sure...
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Round Rock, TX
Mowing Bouteloua dactyloides (Buffalograss)
Dear Mr or Ms Smarty Plants, Although I see you have posted some information about mowing Buffalograss it doesn't seem to answer my question. Will it hurt to mow the buffalograss flags off? Will t...
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Round Rock, TX
Can non-native Epiphyllum (Orchid Cactus) be grown in Round Rock, Texas?
Can the Epiphyllum (Orchid Cactus) be grown in the Round Rock Texas area or is this area too hot for it?
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Round Rock, TX
Native grass for Austin to sow in the early spring
What is the best native grass seed to plant in the Austin area? What is the best time of year to plant? I'll be planting in an area that has no real established grass.
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round rock, TX
Live oaks exhibiting white foam spots from Round Rock, TX
We have several native very large Live Oak in our backyard, and this summer we have noticed white foam spots on the branches. We live in Round Rock next to the Williamson County Park. The spots look...
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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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Round Rock, TX
Controlling Tree Roots in Sewer Lines
We had a leak with our underground pipes near the meter box - the pipes are at least a foot or more underground. My plumber poured table salt on the pipes to deter roots from a nearby tree from gettin...
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