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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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Monday - September 13, 2010

From: Archdale, NC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Planting non-native peach seed from Archdale NC
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Planting and watering peach seeds. Can you give advice for my 12 year old who has recently planted some peach seeds in our yard in Archdale NC? Is the fall okay for planting? Watering instructions? I know this isn't under the wildflower category, but any help is appreciated.

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is not limited exclusively to wildflowers; what it IS limited to is plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plants are being grown.  Prunus persica, peach, is native to China, and therefore out of our realm of expertise. There are a number of members of the Prunus species that are native to North America, mostly wild plums. The "persica" in the botanical name of the plant refers to the fact that in early times, it was thought that the peach had originated in Persia; however, it actually was first grown in China, and probably passed on to the Middle East on the Silk Road before Christian times. 

We always like to encourage young gardeners, so we have this article from Colorado State University Extension, Denver County Office, Starting peaches from pits that we hope will help your son with his project. Most peaches such as you would purchase in the produce aisle are propagated by budding onto specific rootstock, which means if the seeds you have do sprout, bloom and fruit, the peaches may not look anything like the peaches from which the pit was taken. 

 

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