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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members 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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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

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Thursday - April 17, 2014

From: Gulfport, MS
Region: Southeast
Topic: Invasive Plants, Non-Natives, Vines
Title: Ivy a suitable ground cover in Live Oaks from Gulfport MS
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Will Ivy be a safe and suitable ground cover for old growth Live Oak trees in coastal Mississippi?

ANSWER:

We are assuming you are referring to English Ivy, which is both non-native to North America and invasive. Here is an article about Hedera helix (English Ivy) that we hope will help to convince you not to plant it, because once you plant it, you HAVE it and it won't go away. Regardless of its name, it is native to most of Europe and western Asia and most invasive.

If you will forgive us for being more than a little lazy today (Spring Fever), we would like to link you to some previous Mr. Smarty Plants answers dealing with this subject.

Davidsonville GA

McLean VA

 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Advocacy of non-native plants.
December 10, 2012 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Instead of asking a question, I would like to comment on the seemingly discouraging tone on growing plants or trees out of their native habitat that I have observed from rea...
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Native plants threatened by invasives in Oklahoma?
September 28, 2010 - What are some native plants in Oklahoma that are being threatened by invasive species?
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Invasive phragmites from New Egypt NJ
July 30, 2011 - I have some wetland near a road. It has been taken over by phragmites. How is the best way to remove these grasses and add some diversity to this area. The area in question is approx. 100 by 30 feet.
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Getting rid of poison ivy
May 08, 2009 - Dear Mr Smarty Plants, Likewise I also have a shady area in my yard with overgrowth of poison ivy. It borders a small duck pond and we have a Golden Retriever. I too would like to plant soon afterward...
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Should the herbicide Ornamec 170 be used on unwanted grasses?
March 15, 2012 - I have a lovely wildflower garden in a field behind my house; unfortunately, the wildflowers are being smothered by grasses. I understand that Ornamec 170 can be used to control grasses in wildflower...
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