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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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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!

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Wednesday - April 28, 2010

From: Ashley, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Trees
Title: Norway Pine vs. Norway Spruce
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Is a Norway Pine the same species of tree as a Norway Spruce?

ANSWER:

Pinus resinosa (red pine/Norway Pine) is native to the Northeast US and Canada despite its misleading name. Norway Spruce (Picea abies) is native to Europe so we do not have a lot of information about it in our database.

But, no, even though they are both in the same plant family (Pinaceae) they are neither the same Genus nor Species and are very different plants.

The mission of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is to increase the sustainable use and conservation of native wildflowers, plants and landscapes.

For that reason, if you are considering planting one or the other, we recommend you choose the native plant as it will contribute to your native ecosystem, providing seed for native birds and as a larval food host for the Northern pine sphinx moth.

 

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