En EspaŅol

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

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.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Monday - November 29, 2004

From: New Orleans, LA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: More on bluebonnets
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We would like to know if the bluebonnet wildflowers are suitable for New Orleans and, if so, which months should they be seeded. Otherwise what can you suggest for our humid climate. We like blue, lavender, yellow and peach. There are some oak trees with many birds. Will the birds eat many of the seeds? We have a Housing Project across from our church that could benefit from the beauty of flowers.

ANSWER:

It is possible that the Texas bluebonnet, the species that grows around the Austin area, might grow well in New Orleans; but a similar species, the sandyland bluebonnet, that is more common in East Texas, would probably do better in the New Orleans climate and soil type. Another member of the Family Lupinus that also occurs in Louisiana, the sundial lupine might also do well there. You might also check out the articles in our Native Plant Library about growing bluebonnets and landscaping with native plants.

Since you will be sowing seed and covering with soil, there shouldn't be a big problem with birds eating them. Alternatively, you could sow seeds in pots and then transplant them or buy young plants to transplant.

In your garden you probably want flowers that require the least amount of care, are perennial, and provide a variety of colors over most of the year. For instance, black-eyed Susans would provide yellow flowers in mid- to late summer while the bluebonnets would bloom in the spring. You can pick and choose by flower color and bloom time from a list of plants native to the Southeast from the Regional Factpacks on the Wildflower Center web page. There is also a list of native plant and seed sources for your region at this same address.
 

More Wildflowers Questions

Information on Mrs. Johnsons efforts in highway beautification
January 11, 2006 - Perhaps you can help. I am trying to unearth a little history of Lady Bird and her involvement in the beautification of our highways, especially as it relates to using native plants. This is for a p...
view the full question and answer

Should I thin my bluebonnet seedlings in Austin, TX
October 20, 2009 - It is October, and we have hundreds, maybe thousands, of bluebonnets sprouting at Eilers Park. The seeds are from plants we installed last year. They look like they should be thinned. Should we thin t...
view the full question and answer

Texas wildflower guide with every flower listed
November 09, 2012 - Is there a Texas wildflower guide that contains every single flower that grows in the state? I have a few flowers on my land I haven't been able to identify because they aren't in the guide I have. ...
view the full question and answer

Bluebonnets to bloom in September in Harlingen, TX
April 30, 2008 - How can I get bluebonnets to bloom in the first week of September? I need them for my daughter's wedding! We live in Harlingen. Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Number of wild flowers in Durham NC compared to all of North Carolina
April 24, 2009 - How many wild flowers have been identified in the North Carolina Area compared to just in Durham. I would like to photograph them all and want to know how close I can get to capturing photos of all th...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center