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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 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

San Antonio, TX
Inadvisability of overseeding winter rye with wildflowers
I've recently had such phenomenal success with winter rye seed that I'm looking for a spring wildflower seed mix to dress over the same area -- a thin-soiled and pretty bare open-sun (and sprinkler-...
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San Antonio, TX
Are seeds of Tecoma stans (yellow bells) toxic to birds
We have several Tacoma Stans in our yard and several pets (dogs & a Cockatoo). My Too is very interested in the beans of this plant. Are the beans poisonous to birds? Dogs?
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San Antonio, TX
Ground cover for shallow soil in hillside north of San Antonio
I live in the Hill Country north of San Antonio. The yard around the house has very shallow soil and is sloped. Bermuda has a hard time maintaining. Are there any other low growing ground covers that ...
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San Antonio, TX
Evergreen for privacy screen in San Antonio
I am looking to plant native fast-growing evergreens that will provide privacy (growing taller than our fence). We live in San Antonio and the Red Tip Photinia seems to be everywhere! I heard that t...
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San Antonio, TX
Chisos Rosewood Propagation
Can you tell me how to propagate seed for the Chisos Rosewood Tree?
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San Antonio, TX
Tiny red bugs on Mountain Laurel from San Antonio TX
Hordes of solid bright red tiny bugs are all over the bark of my Mountain Laurels. The infestation has me very worried. How can I deal with them? Thank you in advance for helping solve this problem.
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San Antonio, TX
Pruning live oak shoots from San Antonio
I am new to TX and am curious about removing suckers/water sprouts from my Live Oaks. Everything I've read about pruning Live Oaks states that you must paint ALL cuts, so I assume that all means al...
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San Antonio, TX
Native grasses and wildflowers to attract butterflies in Blanco Co., TX
Could you please recommend (native, xeriscape, deer resistant) grasses and flowers that attract butterflies that can be grown in Blanco County?
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San Antonio, TX
Source for Brasil tree, Condalia hookeri
I have been searching for this tree everywhere, but cannot locate a dealer/retailer/nursey that sells this tree. Its name is Brasil tree (Condalia hookeri) and it is native to the southern US, ...
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San Antonio, TX
Support for non-native, invasive Nandina Domestica from San Antonio, TX
I consider nandina domestica to be a perfect plant for San Antonio, but see that it is on the list of invasive plants for surrounding eco-areas. How should I respond regarding one of my favorite land...
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San Antonio, TX
Non-branching mimosa tree
I have a Mimosa Tree, just about 2 years old, grown from seed. The problem with it is that it has not branched out, it looks like one long branch growing out of the ground, about 5 feet if stood strai...
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San Antonio, TX
Controlling Cnidoscolus texanus (Texas bullnettle)
Hello,I need your help to control some nasty weeds in my yard/pasture. I am an old timer and do not have a picture to include—haven't figured out that part of the camera/phone yet. This weed is a pri...
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San Antonio, TX
Water Gardening
I took the landscaping class several years ago, and now would like to put in a section of aquatic plants. Starting small, I was initially looking for a ceramic bowl-type container, and I need to know...
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San Antonio, TX
Tidying up Copper Canyon Daisies in San Antonio
We have a small bed with 4 copper canyon daisies. We cut them back in the fall but have not pruned them during growing season; as a result they become a big tangle by September. Should they be pruned ...
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San Antonio, TX
Native range of Osage orange tree
I found a "bois d'arc" or Osage Orange Tree in a San Antonio park. Is this very unusual? I thought they were mainly in East Tx as I had never seen one here before.
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San Antonio, TX
Survival possibility of transplant of sucker from oak tree
My neighbor has a young oak tree in his front yard. It has small leaves and round acorns and once a year sprouts shoot up at its base. The neighbor was kind enough to let me dig some up to try to tr...
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San Antonio, TX
Germination of bluebonnets from seed
I am having problems getting my bluebonnet (Alamo Fire and regular bluebonnets to germinate from seed). Usually I soak them in lukewarm water overnight then plant in a potting mix. I am only getting...
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San Antonio, TX
Locating Rudbeckia cultivar in San Antonio
Hello, I’m searching for one-gallon plants of Rudbeckia fulgida var. speciosa “Viette’s Little Suzy” to purchase either from a San Antonio or area nursery or through a mail order Texas Grower. Is th...
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San Antonio, TX
What to do with ailing live oak trees
We live in far north San Antonio, TX on a 2 acre lot with many trees.. about 25% oak and 75% cedar. About 15% of our live oak trees have not sprouted leaves yet this spring, or have only sprouted leav...
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San Antonio, TX
Culture of Indian paintbrush
I have never tried to plant the Indian Paintbrush flower before, and I'm not sure what the culture is besides what's on the LBJ Wildflower center website. Are there any tricks for getting a good sh...
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San Antonio, TX
Blue Natives for San Antonio
What are the best flowers or trees to buy since we are always in stage 2 and sometimes in stage 3 water conservation? I love flowers that are blue, preferably year around. THANK YOU
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