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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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Friday - May 27, 2005

From: wantagh, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources
Title: Sources of native wildflowers for Long Island, NY
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

What wildflowers are native to Long Island and where can I buy seeds/plants? There is so much information out there that I find my region, Long Island, seems to get lost. There is only 1 local nursery listed on your site as a supplier, and they did not answer my query. I'd really like to choose just one or two species to start with in my new home's backyard.

ANSWER:

I can't supply you with a list of native species for Long Island, but I can get close. The Connecticut Botanical Society on their web site has an excellent feature titled "Gardening with Native Plants". It shows photographs and gives information about soil type, sun requirements, bloom period, and much more for recommended native plants for the area. Long Island and Connecticut should share many common native species of wildflowers. In the New York Flora Atlas from the New York Flora Association, you find a checklist for Nassau County to compare with the list from the Connecticut Botanical Society. The New England Wildflower Society web page should also contain useful information.

If you searched the National Suppliers Directory and were unable to find a supplier in New York, you may have to search the Directory for the Northeast Region to find someone near you who sells via the internet or by telephone. You might also check with the New York Flora Association, Connecticut Botanical Society and the New England Wildflower Society for nurseries that specialize in native plants for your area.
 

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