Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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?

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
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

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!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - April 07, 2010

From: Baltimore, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Native plants more beneficial for Maryland and Chesapeake Bay?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Why are native plant species more beneficial than non native plant species for the state of Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay?

ANSWER:

The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service Chesapeake Field Office has a website, Bay Scapes, that should give you a lot of information on native plants for that area. In general, we can tell you that the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plants are being grown. Plants that have evolved in an area over millions of years will have developed tolerance for the prevailing weather, provide food and cover for native wildlife and, in garden situations, require less water, fertilizer and other maintenance.

In our Special Collections, we have a list of plants native to that area, Plants of Chesapeake Bay, provided by the  U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service Chesapeake Field Office, as well. When you look at our webpage on a specific plant on that list, it will often have the benefits of the plant listed, which include butterflies or birds it may attract, wildlife browse or erosion protection.

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Something eating cannas in Austin
July 14, 2012 - What is eating my cannas?
view the full question and answer

Non-native Mandevilla care
March 08, 2006 - I have a mandevilla and it looks like there are about 5 plants in one pot. Can it be separated without killing it? And, if it can be separated how should it be done? The plant is about 7" high and i...
view the full question and answer

Insects in non-native weeping willow
September 17, 2008 - My weeping willow is dropping small black insects. Thousands of 1/16" cover the ground etc. Insects stain a raspberry, purple color when smashed. Insects are very soft.Insects present about 3 weeks...
view the full question and answer

Winter-hardiness of hibiscus in Idaho
June 14, 2009 - I bought a hibiscus tree at Sam's Club in Idaho Falls and after planting it, I read the label which says not to go below 50 degrees. Does that mean it is an inside or potted tree to bring in in the ...
view the full question and answer

Short, Natural Evergreen Shrubs for Texas
March 12, 2015 - I am looking for small/dwarf evergreen shrubs that, when mature, will be no larger than three feet tall. If possible I would like shrubs that are graceful and more natural looking rather than ôregimen...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.