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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

Kyle, TX
Expanding clay soils near rain garden
I want to put a rain garden in my yard in central TX (Kyle). My subdivision architectural review committee expressed concerns about the expansive clay soils becoming saturated and possibly shortening...
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Kyle, TX
Landscaping plans in Kyle TX
I am starting from scratch in a backyard (approx. 52'x25')in Central Texas (Kyle). The backyard is on the north side of the single story house. I would like to have plants and trees that attract and...
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Kyle, TX
Native trees that will thrive in Amarillo, TX
I need help in finding native Texas trees that will do well in Amarillo's low water and extreme temps.
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Kyle, TX
Natural privacy hedge for Kyle Texas
I am looking to make a natural privacy screen in the Kyle Texas area. I am being pointed towards Leyland Cypress by some and told to shy away from this tree by others. I found Green Giant Arborvitae a...
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Kyle, TX
Problems with gaura in Kyle TX
Gaura - I seem to have something going on with this plant. I've tried fungicide that also works on mealy bugs and spider mites, etc., but they're looking rather puny? Any suggestions? thanks
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Kyle, TX
Wildseed Planting in a drought
Due to the extreme drought and no rain in the near future in central Texas would it be prudent to have a wildseed planting in October?
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Kyle, TX
Removing Creeping Fig Suckers
Help Mr Smarty Plants, I am helping a neighbor remove a creeping fig from her property and want to know if there is any product that will soften, emulsify or remove the remaining sucker roots on the ...
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Kyle, TX
Re-blooming bluebonnets in May in Kyle TX
My bluebonnets in flower bed bloomed beautifully this spring. Now it is late May and they bloomed again. Why is this? I never saw these flowers bloom twice in a season.
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Kyle, TX
Plant identfication
I live in Kyle Texas and my neighbor has a tree with white blooms and when they fall off the twigs have a wavy look at the end with no leaves. we spoke to a nursery and they thought maybe an eve's ne...
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Kyle, TX
Replacing non-native lawn grasses in an HOA in Kyle TX
We just rounded out our first year with our first lawn here in Central Texas. I was stingy with the water and needless to say our non-native, Bermuda grass and St. Augustine lawn did not fare well. Id...
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Kyle, TX
Possibility of oak wilt or iron deficiency
This spring my two oak trees, 4" and 7" in diameter, in my yard in Kyle started showing very light green leaves with green veins. I've been told this is chlorosis, so I treated them with a couple o...
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Kyle, TX
Susceptibility of Shumard oaks to oak wilt
I have planted a red oak tree. I am still trying to locate the ID tag for the type. I planted it two or three years ago. I purchased the tree from either Lowes or Home Depot. Is there a type of red oa...
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Kyle, TX
Possible non-native squash and gourd cross from Kyle TX
Last year I gathered seeds from the yellow squash plants that were grown from a seed packet (hybrid, I assume). Well, now the fruit produced by those plants seems to be a cross between a yellow squash...
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Kyle, TX
Bark problems on Platanus occidentalis (American Sycamore)
I got home today, after two hot sunny days, and found that one of the sycamores (street tree) planted last year (3-4" caliper) has vertically split and peeling bark on the south side of the trunk (la...
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Kyle, TX
Need help with an invasive ground cover type plant filling in damaged areas in lawn.
Since the drought this summer, there is an invasive ground cover type plant filling in the damaged areas in my lawn . It is dark greenish/purplish very small clover type plant, difficult to pull up an...
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Kyle, TX
When should I remove the stakes from Oak trees planted last november in Kyle, TX?
I live in Kyle TX. I have new construction of oak trees that are about 10 feet tall and are staked. How long should they stay staked? They were put in the ground about Thanksgiving 2009. Thanks.
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Kyle, TX
Hedge in central Texas
Help, my oleanders are dying. I am in need of hedge suggestions- ideal would be quick growing, maybe 8-12 feet at their tallest. I live in Central Texas.
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Kyle, TX
Texas native mulberry tree
My family recently moved to Kyle, TX (north of San Marcos, south of Austin). I am delighted to discover a dewberry tree in our yard. I have never heard of such a thing. Is this a common species?...
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Kyle, TX
Spreading compost from Kyle TX
I'm trying to find if there is some type of "implement" to help spread compost in my yard that is easier than a shovel and rake. Any ideas?
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Kyle, TX
Yellowing of palm tree leaves
I want to know about palm trees. The leaves are turning yellow.
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Kyle, TX
Chlorosis in sycamore in Kyle TX
I'm trying to assist an elderly neighbor of mine with a plant issue. We have designated street trees in this community, our street being a Sycamore. The previous foreman out here called it a Mexica...
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