En Español

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?


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

Monday - May 17, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Transplants
Title: Division of non-native Lamb's Ear plant in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford


I have a lambs' ear plant that has gone wild, and I would like to divide and transplant part of the plant. Advice? Live in Austin, TX. 78757


Stachys byzantina, Lamb's Ears, is usually sold where herbs are sold, is used widely in informal gardens, but is not native to North America. It originates in Iran, Turkey and the Caucasus and grows in USDA Hardiness Zones 4 to 10. It probably needs more shade in the higher zones.

From About.com: Landscaping, this article on Stachys byzantina answers your questions, including dividing it and discarding the wilted, ugly parts in the center about every 2 to 4 years. Another source recommended you let it bloom and then cut off the dead blooms before they set seed, or your lamb's ears will take over.

Pictures of lamb's ears from Google.  


More Transplants Questions

Transplanting non-native crape myrtle in Scottsdale AZ
May 11, 2014 - When is the best time to transplant dwarf crape myrtle in Scottsdale AZ?
view the full question and answer

Transplanting large trees in Austin, TX
March 30, 2007 - Hello, I'm new to Austin and live in Circle C Subdivision off of Hwy 45 and Spruce Canyon. We would like to plant a couple of trees that will provide shade. I've read your Q&As but would like ad...
view the full question and answer

Ash tree dying back to lower sprouts in Kempner TX
June 19, 2010 - My 2 year old ash tree leaves dropped, appears dead, branches dying. New growth near base of tree. Do I cut upper trunk or remove entire tree? My other ash is doing well.
view the full question and answer

Leaves browning on non-native willow from in Cumbla PA
July 10, 2011 - We recently planted a willow tree. A lot of the leaves turned yellow and some turned brown, but it is also getting some new buds. my question is, should I take the dead leaves off or leave them there...
view the full question and answer

Field of Dreams
June 07, 2009 - I planted a field of sunflowers in April. I transplanted some of the crowded plants to different rows in mid-May - no problems. I have tried to transplant some of the plants this first week of June ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center