En Español

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

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.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

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!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - April 15, 2012

From: Washington , NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Non-Natives, Propagation
Title: Growing non-native lettuce under artificial light from Washington NY
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Which artificial light( UV LIGHT, FLUORESCENT LIGHT AND INCANDESCENT LIGHT) makes a lettuce plant grow the fastest over a time period of 3 weeks and what would be your variables( independent, dependent and control variables) and discussion to this experiment? Please answer this, Mr. Smarty Plants, as I need it for my science expo.

ANSWER:

While we would like to be able to help you with your science project, we are not qualified to do so for several reasons. First, we deal only with plants native to North America, which lettuce is not. Lactuca salvia (lettuce) was first grown by the Egyptians,  then the Greeks and Romans, and was brought to the New World by early settlers in the 16th and 17th Centuries.

The second reason we can't help you is that we work to help gardeners grow plants native to their area outside in the ordinary rainfall, sunlight, temperatures and soil. Growing any plant, even a native, under artificial conditions, is out of our expertise. Here is an article about growing lettuce from the University of Illinois Extension Program.

For more information, read Do Plants Grow as Well Under Artificial Light? from EarthSky. An article on Aeroponics, Understanding Light Energy for Plant Growth Aeroponic Systems has some graphs comparing different forms of light.

 

More Propagation Questions

What to do with agave after it blooms from Phoenix AZ
March 12, 2013 - Hello! I have 2 century plants in the process of blooming. How exciting!! I've never really seen it before. Anyway, what do I then do with the dying/dead plant. Simply dig it up and trash it? T...
view the full question and answer

Stubs of Texas Star Hibiscus in Abilene, TX
March 26, 2009 - We have cut back our outdoor Texas Star Hibiscus for 4 years and now have a large number of old stubs that the new growth must navigate around. Will it kill the plant if we dig up the old stubs? At so...
view the full question and answer

Planting orange-flowered asclepias in Austin
March 15, 2011 - I have asclepias seeds of the orange flower variety and would like to plant them. What should I do for the best success, and how long does it take for them to come up?
view the full question and answer

Where can seeds or plants of Ruellia nudiflora be obtained from Cedar Park TX
January 10, 2011 - Where can I purchase Ruellia nudiflora seeds or plants?
view the full question and answer

Grow bluebonnets in Virginia
September 04, 2007 - I want to ATTEMPT to grow some Texas Bluebonnets in VA because I am homesick and both our kids are back in Austin. That said, the site says " it may be necessary to inoculate the soil with a rhizobiu...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center