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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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Saturday - April 17, 2010

From: White Plains, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: What will grow under non-native, invasive Norway Maple in White Plains NY?
Answered by: Barbara Medford


Is there anything that will grow under a Norway Maple? The soil is dry and the area is small hill next to my driveway. It is an eye sore! Thank you!


The Acer platanoides, Norway Maple, releases chemicals to discourage undergrowth which tends to create bare, muddy run-off conditions immediately beneath the tree. This is known as allelopathy and is also present in black walnut trees, magnolias, oaks and other trees that don't want competition. The websites we found on this plant referred to it as a non-native invasive. It is native to eastern and central Europe and southeast Asia; 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 they are being grown. The advice several of those sites on control of this tree was "don't plant it." So, it's not a case of what can be planted under it, but the tree itself. 

Plant Invaders of Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas: Acer platanoides, Norway Maple

USDA Forest Service Weed of the Week



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