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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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Friday - June 24, 2011

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Non-native textile bamboo for Austin?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I was looking for a non-invasive bamboo to plant as a privacy screen in central Austin. Would bambusa textilis (weavers bamboo) be an ok solution since it is a clumping bamboo instead of running?

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the areas in which those plants grow natively. So, Bambusa textilis, Textile bamboo, falls out of our area of expertise, as it is native to China. We could find very little solid information on this plant, except that it is considered rare, so we don't know how easily obtainable it would be. What we did find on the plant were advertisements, all trumpeting how beautiful it was, but none mentioning whether or not it could become invasive. Last of all, it is native to USDA Hardiness Zones 9a to 11; Austin is Zone 8b.

 

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