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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 - February 24, 2012

From: Stuart, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs, Trees, Vines, Wildflowers
Title: Plants in bloom in April in Stuart FL
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Can you tell me which plants I might reasonably expect to see in bloom in April of this year?

ANSWER:

That sort of depends on where you are planning to be looking. To begin with, nearly all vascular plants, trees, herbaceous blooming plants, vines and shrubs bear flowers. It's part of the propagation procedure for these plants. So, if you are interested in the possibilities in your home state, you could go to our Native Plant Database, use the Combination Search, select Florida and nothing else except Bloom Time, click on April and click on Submit Combination Search. When we did this we got 603 results,  from Acer barbatum (Southern sugar maple) (picture of blooms) to Zizia aurea (Golden zizia).

If you're thinking in terms of herbacaceous blooming plants (herbs), follow the same procedure, except also click on "Herbs" under Habit or General Appearance. That got us 298 results, from Achillea millefolium (Common yarrow) to Zizia aurea (Golden zizia) (again). If you are intrested in wildflowers, as people this time of year often are, they would be included in that last list. Remember that the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center specializes in plants native not only to North America but to the areas in which those plants grow naturally. So, we won't be attempting to list every flowering weed that is non-native and/or possibly invasive.

If you are thinking of just wildflowers in Florida, visit this website Florida's Native Wildflowers, and follow some of the links on traveling to see wildflowers in different parts of the state.

And, finally, a great many of the questions we get about wildflowers this time of year are from people planning trips to Central Texas to see our wildflowers. From a previous answer:

"If you are talking about bluebonnets and other Texas wildflowers, planning a trip here to see them, the forecast is pretty good. After a very weak season last year due to drought, we have had rains at the right time this year and expect a nice showing. As usual, the Spring wildflowers tend to peak in late March to early April, but there are wildflowers blooming almost year round somewhere in Texas, and always at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. Read this article on Wildflower Days. Also, Texas Wildflowers."

 

 
 

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