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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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Saturday - October 25, 2008

From: Kapolei, HI
Region: Other
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Care for iceplant in Hawaii
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Good morning Mr. Smarty Plants( I love the name) I live in Hawaii and have iceplant on the hill behind my house. Its established pretty well.I weed it often. How much water do I need and how can I get it to flower and should I fertilize? Thank you so much for any help.

ANSWER:

Please note that we have inserted an "l" in our name in your question. Smarty Plants, Plants, Plants, please, please, please.

You put us in something of a dilemma. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center focuses on plants native to North America. While Hawaii is a State, it is not in North America. So, we'll tell you what little we know about Ice Plant, and that it is invasive, especially in places like California. Hawaii is really plagued with invasive plants, to the extent that the natural habitat of Hawaii has become very altered. There are several botanical names that all refer to members of the same succulent family, and all of which apparently originated in South Africa. Hopefully, one of these sites will give you the information you need.

Carpobrotus chilensis- common name sea fig, South African species considered succulent ground cover

Botany.com - Lampranthus

Delosperma cooperi

 

 

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