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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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 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

Converse, TX
Wheelchair access to the Wildflower Center from Converse TX
Hi. I hope you can help. I've written two emails to the Contact Dept but to no avail in receiving a response. I wanted to know if wheelchairs can access the flower fields and the trails? I get the fe...
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Universal City, TX
Pruning Texas Mountain Laurel
How much can I prune a 10 year old mountain laurel to re-shape it and when?
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Schertz, TX
What is wrong with my cross vine (Bignonia capreolata?
I have a crossvine (Bignonia capreolata) that has grown and bloomed beautifully for about 7 years. Then last year the bloom was significantly less and the bottom growth almost nonexistant. The leaves ...
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Schertz, TX
Young oak tree with dead branches
I purchased my home new a year ago and we have three young oak trees that came with the house. Two of the trees are doing great and their new leaves have grown in. One tree however still has dead le...
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Schertz, TX
Xeriscape demonstration garden
I am working with the city of Schertz to rejuvenate a xeriscape demonstration garden. We want to plant a hummingbird/butterfly garden using native plants. The current bed is currently overrun with ber...
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Schertz, TX
Obtaining native plants in the Austin area from Schertz TX
Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I went to the plant sale this past weekend, I had a good time, there was a great selection of plants. I was there at 9:00AM Sat. and when I asked for some plants than I have on ...
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Schertz, TX
Native plants for sale end of April in Schertz TX
I am trying to raise some native plants for a fund-raiser .They need to be salable by the end of April. Something with flowers would be nice. Any suggestions?
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Schertz, TX
More trees to go with live oaks in Schertz TX
We moved to a new house that has two recently planted live oak trees. Other than those two little trees there is nothing else on the property. Because of what I read about the oak wilt I would like ...
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Schertz, TX
Keeping Bermuda out of Native Turfgrass
We live on zip code 78154. Sadly our yard has bermuda grass–we are using solarization to kill the bermuda and plant seeds of buffalograss/bluegrama/curly-mesquite. All the neighbors have bermuda and ...
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Schertz, TX
Few blooms on native Bignonia capriolata (cross-vine)
I have an 8-year-old crossvine that has grown and bloomed beautifully until this year. During the winter it lost all of its lower leaves. What leaves were left had brownish-red splotches on them. It h...
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Cibolo, TX
Late winter pruning of native Texas Sage
I have several Texas Sage bushes that have started to get very woody and have growth only on the top. This seems to have led to a definite listing to one side. Should I trim these to the ground or...
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Cibolo, TX
What is a lawn broom from Cibolo TX
Concerning gulf muhly grass you mention using a lawn broom to get rid of the dead stalks. What is a lawn broom? What does it look like? Where can I purchase one?
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Cibolo, TX
Bluebonnets planted in late spring bloom, will they bloom again?
New to South Texas & we decided to plant bluebonnets around our house. The seeds were planted in late spring & we were delighted to watch them start their initial growth-cycle. They ultimately produc...
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Cibolo, TX
Brown spots in St. Augustine grass
Mr. Smarty Plants, My husband and I are in the Air Force and were recently moved to Cibolo Texas. We built a home and hired a landscaper to finish the yard May 07 (with irrigation system). We laid d...
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Cibolo, TX
Problems with Texas Ash in Cibolo TX
I have a Texas Ash tree I planted two years ago. The tree was 10 feet high with thick foliage. This spring the leaves started falling off after I spread fertilizer on my yard. The end of the branches ...
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Cibolo, TX
Rust-colored spots on Lantana?
Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in Cibolo TX and my lantana plants are about 3 years old. They have done exceedingly well until this spring. The leaves have developed brown, rust colored spots and the le...
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Garden Ridge, TX
Student research on fire-resistance plant labels from Garden Ridge TX
Dear Mr. Smarty Pants, I'm a 4th grader at Garden Ridge Elementary in Comal County. I am researching fire resistant plants. Can you please tell me if most plants' tags say whether they are fire r...
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Garden Ridge, TX
Screening bush for shady area
I need some kind of bush that will act as an air conditioning blind. So far the deer have eaten or destroyed everything planted in the very shady mulch bed. What do you recommend?
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Garden Ridge, TX
Plant identification
Comal County, Texas. Trying to identify a plant found growing in Comal Co. It was growing along the ground, with long, spiky leaves, and a ball of green flowers with a dark purple/brown 5 pointed sta...
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Garden Ridge, TX
plant labels to indicate resistance to wildfire
I have a group of students researching plants that are more fire resistant. They have learned that keeping home landscaping around a structure will help reduce the risk of a structure catching fire i...
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Garden Ridge, TX
Need a privacy screen of native plants for swimming pool in Garden Ridge, TX
We are building a pool and would like to use native plants as a screen around the fence, preferably a shrub that grows quickly to about 6 feet. Any suggestions? Thanks.
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