Explore Plants

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
    
 

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
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - October 20, 2009

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Should I thin my bluebonnet seedlings in Austin, TX
Answered by: Jimmy Mills and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

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 them or just let them alone?

ANSWER:

First of all, let me refer you to our "How To" article on growing bluebonnets. Actually, there are three articles, so once you get to the How to Articles page, scroll down the page to the heading; All About Bluebonnets. The three articles there can tell you a lot about growing bluebonnets.

As to thinning bluebonnets, there are two schools of thought here at the Wildflower Center. I am of the opinion that you should leave well enough alone. However, our senior horticulturist, Julie Krosley, says that she has had good success with doing some thinning at this time. In fact, after the first true leaves appear you can carefully dig some out and transplant to areas with no seedlings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

Deadheading or trimming back of Asclepias spp
July 29, 2005 - I have some butterfly weeds (flowers) and I have heard conflicting stories as to how to cut them back. Should they be deadheaded to elongate bloom time or does that prevent any seeds from replanting?...
view the full question and answer

Asters bloom period
April 16, 2005 - When do the asters bloom?
view the full question and answer

Meadow garden for Colorado Springs CO
June 03, 2012 - We recently purchased a restored home on a mesa just above the downtown area of Colorado Springs on the front range. The previous owners seeded the front lawn with blue gramma and told me that all I ...
view the full question and answer

Deer Resistant, Fast Growing Groundcover Suggestions for Georgia
April 20, 2013 - Our driveway is 1/4 mile in length and is steep on both sides (one side up one side down). It currently has grass that our contractor planted using seed when we built our house. We are unable to cut t...
view the full question and answer

Plants to prevent erosion in IL
August 02, 2012 - We just got done building a house and have leveled all of the dirt piles. We do have a row of straw bales to help prevent the dirt from washing onto the neighbors property. It is the wrong time of ye...
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.