En EspaŅol

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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - July 28, 2010

From: Covington, GA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Maintenance of a wildflower garden in Covington, GA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a small wildflower meadow in my backyard in southern Newton County, Georgia. The area has a 17% slope and is surrounded by mixed a stand of hard and soft woods. This year the spring and early summer flowers looked great, but now that the black-eyed susan are going to seed, weeds and small trees are taking over. Can I do a late summer mowing to get rid of the weeds? Should I sow additional wildflower seeds if I do mow? Any help would be appreciated.

ANSWER:

First, read our How-To Article Meadow Gardening. It really answers all your questions. You will absolutely have to be vigilant about woody plants and weeds moving into a wildflower meadow, or they will take over, and you will have larger plants and trees shading out your wildflowers. When the plants you are trying to preserve have seeded, you can certainly mow. You can mow again in the late Winter when the seedlings are low, setting your mower at a higher cutting distance. Whether or not you sow more seeds is entirely up to you, perhaps doing so to add diversity to your selection of wildflowers or just to ensure having the ones you like best. It will become self-perpetuating if, and only if, you mow and remove (without using herbicides) those plants and trees that don't belong. 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

Bluebonnets around May 21 in Fredericksburg, TX
January 31, 2010 - We heard that this 2010 spring is expected to be a great bluebonnet/wildflower season in the Texas Hill Country. Do you predict that a later May date (21st) will be too late to catch abundant bluebonn...
view the full question and answer

Fertilizing hayfield with wildflowers in Brenham TX
September 20, 2010 - I have property near Brenham, TX that produces wild bluebonnets, Indian paintbrush and other wildflowers each year. I would like to fertilize the pastures to help with hay production (the grass is ha...
view the full question and answer

Culture of Indian paintbrush
December 16, 2007 - I have never tried to plant the Indian Paintbrush flower before, and I'm not sure what the culture is besides what's on the LBJ Wildflower center website. Are there any tricks for getting a good sh...
view the full question and answer

Cutting back annual wildflowers after going to seed
August 16, 2006 - I purchased some wildflower seeds from the center last year, planted them in Nov-Dec and they have done fairly well this year despite our fairly dry winter. My question is now that they are done bloom...
view the full question and answer

Wildflower succession from Austin
April 02, 2011 - I am interested in learning about a wildflower "cycle" (not sure of a better term). I recently saw the Wildflower special on PBS that talked briefly about an area that had wildflowers that naturally...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center