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?


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

Tuesday - July 20, 2010

From: Greenfield, MA
Region: Northeast
Topic: Planting
Title: What to Plant Now feature?
Answered by: Joe Marcus


Would y'all at all consider having a "What To Plant Now" section" and/or a "What's Blooming Now" one. You are very generous with your information, but if I wanted to "go native", it seems that the information I glean here gives several dozen options, with no clue how to cultivate these. When do I plant, and how long till bloom are really key. Thanks.


Thank you for your suggestions!

Our long-term goal is to provide all of the type of information you're asking for.  Since there are more than 20,000 native plant species in North America, you can understand that the challenge is daunting.  In the interim, we try to give our patrons the best tools we can to help them make decisions about gardening with native plants.

Having search results that yield dozens of choices is not necessarily a bad thing.  Yes, there are more options to research, but the richness of options will usually lead you to better results. 

We already feature a "What's Blooming Now?" section on the home page of the Image Gallery.  One set of images features plants from across North America that are currently flowering.  The other set of images focuses on those species that are currently flowering at our home at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, TX.  A customized "What's Blooming Now?" feature is a possibility and is one we'll investigate as we further develop and enhance the website.


More Planting Questions

Yard Trees for Burleson, TX
July 24, 2011 - We need to replace 2 mature pear trees in our front yard, north side of the house in Burleson, TX. We are looking for faster growing trees that will last for decades that resist disease in clay soil....
view the full question and answer

Mountain laurel planting over Frederickburg limestone
March 22, 2012 - We have rocky limestone shelves on our property. We want to plant a mountain laurel. Are the roots strong enough to break through the limestone or should we try to find another location? The limestone...
view the full question and answer

Transplant shock in Chinkapin oak from Copperas Cove TX
June 18, 2012 - I have a newly planted chinkapin oak, appx 14' tall, in the Copperas Cove TX area. It has done great for the first two weeks. Now the leaves are yellowing (June) and beginning to dry up. I water it ...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting a redbud in Virginia Beach VA
April 21, 2010 - I have a 5-6 ft. Redbud Tree and like to dig up and move to different spot in my backyard. How/what is the proper way to do it without killing the tree?
view the full question and answer

large tree suited for limestone site in Austin, TX
January 15, 2015 - I have a dying Chinaberry tree [35 ' tall; WNW corner of lot; at least 25 years old] that I am having removed. What native / adapted tree would you recommend to fill that void. I do understand that...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center