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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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Friday - May 22, 2009

From: Rosenberg, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: List of trees native to Texas
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I am terribly sorry but, I just found out about this school project; leaves from Texas native trees. I gathered leaves and, now, tonight, Mr. Student advises that they must be native to Texas. Typical, huh?? I found a list but, after a while, it seems as though some of these might be those that have adapted to Texas? I have been looking at your site for quite a while but haven't found a question quite this specific and time is running out. Could you please help? I think the project is due Tuesday, 5/26. Thank you so very much!!!

ANSWER:

We can help you check the leaves you have found against trees native to Texas. Go to our Native Plant Database, and on that page, to Combination Search. Select on Texas for the state and "tree" for Habit, then click on "Submit Combination Search." When we did this we got 271 possibilities. Each one has a weblink to the page on that specific tree and a thumbnail photo. Or, if you know the common or scientific name of the trees whose leaves you have already collected, again, go to the Native Plant Database and type the name in the "Scientific or common names" box at the top of the page, and click on "Go." Either way, you should be able to get pictures and information on the tree. If it is not in our database, it is probably not native. At the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, we are devoted to the care and study of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are being grown. Of course, many of these trees will be native to other states as well, but at least you will know the trees you find in our database are Texas natives. 

 

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