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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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Saturday - February 27, 2010

From: Beaumont, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: How will winter weather affect bluebonnets this year?
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Just wondering how our winter weather this year will affect the blooming of bluebonnets. When are they expected to be in full bloom and what will be their duration? Thank you.

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants gets lots of questions about bluebonnet bloom time and how the blooms are affected by the weather so I am going to refer you to the answer to a recent question and quote from that question (January 5, 2010) here as well:

"Early April is very consistently the height of the flowering season for Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet) in Central Texas.  Weather conditions can vary the season by just a few days either way, but not enough to really notice.  Weather plays a greater role in the development of any year's Bluebonnet crop.  In general, good fall rains improve the show for the following season.  However, other variables such as germination rate, competing winter grasses, etc, also affect the flower crop."

We have been blessed with very fine rain and even snowfall this winter which should make the bluebonnets and other wildflowers quite spectacular this year.  Look for the bluebonnets to begin showing up on roadsides in March with a peak around the first weekend in April.  There should some blooms still around in the middle of May.  The season shifts a bit as you move north or south from the Austin area.

 

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