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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

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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Tuesday - January 18, 2011

From: Athens, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like, Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs, Trees, Wildflowers
Title: What plants grow well in Athens, TX?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Athens, Texas, we have very sandy soil mixed with clay, what plants grow well here?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants is going to suggest three avenues to approach this question. The first is to go out and look around Athens to see what is growing well. As someone once said, " You can see a lot by just looking around." Some of the plants that you see may not be familiar to you, so to get help with the names of plants, visit the East Texas Arboretum and Botanical Society there in Athens. You could also get information from the Native Plant Society of Texas. This link has contact information for the chapters located in East Texas as well as the whole state.

Another avenue is to check out our Native Plant Database. At this time, it is not searchable by soil type, but if you look in the Combination Search box, you see that the categories include general appearance, lifespan, light requirement, and soil moisture as well as bloom characteristics. By selecting "view the Recommended Species page" and clicking on East Texas, you will get a list of 133 commercially available native plant species suitable for planned landscapes in East Texas. Clicking on the name of each plant will pull up its NPIN page which contains information about the plant's characteristics and growth requirement along with images.

Hopefully this will introduce you to some plant friends in Athens.

 

 

 

 

 

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