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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.

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?


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 - November 21, 2008

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflower Center
Title: Living lightly on the land
Answered by: Damon Waitt


Are most of the materials used in the Center recyclable materials? For instance, the wood floors and HVAC systems? Thanks, Joel Rodriguez


When it opened in 1995, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center was "the" model of environmental sustainability. The wood floors are made from reclaimed longleaf pine, stone for buildings was locally quarried, site rubble was used in building foundations and the rainwater collection system was the largest of its kind in North America. Add to that our native plant gardens which require less water and maintenance and you have a recipe for "living lightly on the land" as Mrs Johnson would say. In fact, the Wildflower Center is in the process of applying for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Existing Building certification and is pioneering the Sustainable Sites program which extends the principles of LEED's out into the landscape. So, yes, the Wildflower Center did use recyclable materials and we continue to be a leader in eco-friendly design and construction.




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