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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

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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Friday - June 15, 2007

From: Pleasanton, CA
Region: California
Topic: Trees
Title: Ornamental tree recommendation for California
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

We live in Pleasanton, California and wish to plant an ornamental tree in our front yard. The tree will receive full sun, and the climate can get quite hot in the summer. A Japanese Maple would be the perfect type of tree for the location, from a height, color and texture standpoint, but such a tree cannot take the hot summer sun. Do you have any suggestions?

ANSWER:

Experience has taught us that it is not possible to adequately design a garden or make specific plant recommendations sight unseen. The light, soil, water, and design considerations for each garden site are simply too complex. But we may still be able to help. The Native Plant Database features a search function designed to help with just your kind of project. In the "Combination Search" section of that webpage, select from the menu choices that are appropriate for your requirements.
 

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Soapberry; monoecious or dioecious?
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January 20, 2008 - We have a mountain ash with something growing several feet off the ground that looks like duckbills or mushrooms. Can you tell me what is wrong with it. We lost one mountain ash tree to something an...
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May 21, 2014 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, our spanish oak is growing tan colored lumpy balls about the size and weight of a marshmallow..sometimes just one at the end of a short stem and sometimes 2-3 clumped together....
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Time to transplant an Eastern Redbud in Pearland, TX
November 17, 2010 - When is the best time in the fall to transplant an Eastern Redbud tree in Pearland, TX? We have one approximately 6 feet tall in the back yard and want to move it to the front ASAP.
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May 23, 2007 - HI Mr. Smarty Plants We had two apple (yellow fruit) trees besides out house and they died. Is it ok to replant in the same place with other trees without being afraid something is wrong with the soi...
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