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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 - August 29, 2011

From: Arlington, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Lists, Grasses or Grass-like, Shrubs, Trees
Title: Is there a recommended list for Texas Eastern Cross Timbers?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Is there a recommended list for Texas Eastern Cross Timbers?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants doesn’t have a specific list, but he will point you to some resources that can help you come up with a list.

First, lets become familiar with where the eastern cross timbers ecoregion of Texas is. The term Cross Timbers is used to describe a strip of land in the United States that runs from southeastern Kansas across Central Oklahoma to  Central Texas. In Texas, the eastern cross timbers begins in Cooke County on the Red RIver, and extends southwest through  Denton, Tarrant, Johnson and Hill Counties to just north of Waco.

This site from Texas Parks and Wildlife gives a good description of the region, and this site from the Texas Forest Service has a good map.

To look for some plants, lets go to our Native Plat Database and utilize the Recommended Species List. Clicking on North Central Texas will bring up a list of 105 commercially available native species suitable for planed landscapes in Texas. This area is much larger than the eastern cross timbers region, but it will give you a start. Clicking on the scientific name of each plant will give you its NPIN page that has the characteristics of the plant along with its growth requirements and photos. Using the “Narrow Your Search box will allow you to sort the list by several characters such as habit, annual or perennial, and light and moisture requirements. You can match the plants with your growing conditions.

This link to the Native Plant Society of Texas (NPSOT) lists the different chapters in Texas with contact information. By contacting one of the chapters in your area,  you should be able to find someone who can help you refine your list. The folks at the Bob Jones Nature Center should also be able to help.

 

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