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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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Tuesday - April 18, 2006

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation, Transplants
Title: Repotting from 4-inch pots
Answered by: Joe Marcus and Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hello. A week ago I purchased some native plants at the wildflower center plant sale. I would like to know how to repot these seedlling native plants. They are in 4" pots right now. I have as follows: 4" White Avens, 4" Texas yellow star, 4" Pitcher Sage, 4" Indigo Salvia. What size container should I put all of the above plants? What is the procedure for transplanting these plants? I know what kind of soil to use but would very much appreciate transplanting requirements. Thank you.

ANSWER:

You can move your plants to any size pot up to one-gallon. You can even move them to large planters if you want to to do a mixed planting. Actually, the more soil volume you give the plants the better off they'll be. They won't dry out so quickly and their roots will have more room to grow. When you transplant them, you should be careful to not plant them too deep or too shallow. The top of the root ball should be barely covered with soil—about 1/4 inch. A little root stimulator might help, but they won't want to be heavily fed.

 

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