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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

Center, TX
Fast-growing evergreens for privacy in Center, TX
I live in East Texas and am looking for a fast growing evergreen for a privacy screen around my backyard. The area gets partial sun and the soil has a lot of clay in it.
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Austin, TX
Texas natives that are shade tolerant for Austin, TX
Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I am looking for Texas native plants that are shade tolerant....specifically agaves (How about the Century Agave and the Queen Victoria Agave?) and something to add a splash ...
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Austin, TX
Favorite Wildflower
Dear Green Guru - What are your favorite wildflowers? Signed Curious
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Austin, TX
Viability of Ehretia anacua tree for Austin, TX
I live in Austin, TX and I see you've recommended the Ehretia anacua tree for someone living here. Also, my arborist mentioned it as a replacement for non-native, invasive trees. However, the databas...
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Austin, TX
Trees to replace Ligustrums, and evergreen vines for privacy screen
We had 3 ligustrum trees growing along a creek bank in our back yard and under the City of Austin power lines. Our backyard is on a terrace about 7 feet above the creek's flood plain. The Ligustrums ...
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Austin, TX
Fruit trees for South Austin.
I live in South, South Austin, just a pinch West of 35 near 1626. I would like to plant some fruit trees in the back yard. Anyone will sell fruit trees, but they don't always grow. What fruiting var...
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Austin, TX
Determination of the sex of Mexican persimmon (Diospyros texana)
Last spring, I planted a persimmon fruit from a Mexican Persimmon. I now have 6 small seedlings coming up. Since they all came from the same seed source - 1 black persimmon, will they all be male tree...
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Austin, TX
Sowing grass for shaded lawn in Texas
I'm renting a home for short period of time, hence I would like to make this as simple, but as beneficial as possible. The backyard soil is degraded and compacted so I would like to try and use a "...
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Austin , TX
Trimming of native Muhlenbergia dumosa (Bamboo grass)
Should Muhlenbergia dumosa (Bamboo grass) be cut down in a similar fashion to other perennial grasses that go dormant in the winter.
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Austin, TX
Evergreen replacement for liveoaks with oak wilt in Austin
One day after moving into our very first home and first home in Texas (just north of the Wildflower center in Sendera Southwest Austin) we discovered that all of our Live Oaks have Oak Wilt. After tre...
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Austin, TX
Panels for greenhouse in Austin
I am building a greenhouse for my plants here in Austin and and will be using PVC panels for the roof. Which would be better for starting and growing plants the clear or the white panels?
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Austin, TX
Smell barrier around chicken pen in Austin
What are some shade to part-shade loving, aromatic plants (akin to Lavender or Jasmine) that will do well in Central TX? I'm trying to plant things around my chicken pen that'll create a smell barri...
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austin, TX
Use of surfactants with herbicide for water
I read the article on frogs and the use of Rodeo. Your answer was correct, but to the best of my knowledge, Rodeo is approved for use near water only because it lacks a surfactant. When surfactant...
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Austin, TX
Inflorescence of the American sycamore (Platanus occidentalis)
What kind of flower inflorescence do sycamores have?
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Austin , TX
Grass or ground cover for sun/part shade in Austin
I live in Southwest Austin (a couple of miles from the Wildflower Center) and I would like to plant some grass in my backyard. I have a small yard with several oak trees and they have been cut back to...
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Austin, TX
Non-native purple lantana
I have found some purple trailing lantana on our land. (This land has never been inhabited, as far as I know of.) This is not one of the yellow/pink or yellow/red native varieties. Is this indeed a...
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Austin, TX
Sap flowing from live oak trees in Austin
I have live oak trees in my backyard,17 to be exact. I live in Northwest Austin, in Williamson county. There are two live oaks growing about 4-5 feet apart in the center of my yard. One appears to ha...
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Austin, TX
When do bluebonnets bloom in Austin
When do Blue Bonnets bloom in Austin? We have someone who wants to come visit and see the Blue Bonnets and I want to tell them the right time of year.. Thanks!!
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Austin, TX
Plant fans for choosing native plants for the Central Texas region
Has anyone created a plant "fan" that identifies and gives pertinent information on plants for the Central Texas region? The sample that I've found on fourpebblepress.com seems to cover the Rocky ...
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Austin, TX
Native, deer-resistant flowering plants attractive to bees
I am adding several beehives to our property this spring. I would also like to add more native, flowering, deer-resistant plants that bees love as well. Any recommendations? I live in SW Austin, qui...
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Austin, TX
Problems with Mexican feathergrass in Austin
All of my mexican feathergrass plants have died or gone dormant, laying down flat for the most part. Any idea what's going on with them?
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