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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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Monday - January 24, 2011

From: Fair Oaks Ranch, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Pruning of non-native abelias in Fair Oaks Ranch, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have some old established Abelias that are leggy at the bottom. Can I cut them back, and if so, how far and best time to do so?

ANSWER:

There are a number of species of the genus Abelia but none are native to North America, mostly originating in Japan and China and now are considered "cultivated only," or not growing in their present form natively anywhere. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, protection and propagation of plants native to North America, and to the area in which the plants are being grown. Abelias are a member of the Caprifoliaceae, or honeysuckle family, of which some are native to North America, but not the Abelia. We did find this article from eHow on How to Prune Abelias that should give you some help. 

 

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