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

Saturday - October 20, 2012

From: Lawrenceville, NJ
Region: Northeast
Topic: General Botany, Soils, Watering
Title: Native New Jersey plants to remove iron water from Lawrenceville NJ
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Are there any native New Jersey plants that can remove iron water

ANSWER:

While this is a native plant question, the answer is not native plants. We get many, many questions in which our correspondents ask us for a plant that will do something that plants don't do. Just a few days ago, we got a question from someone who wanted a list of 40 or more plants that ate smog. Unfortunately, there is no such list because there is no such plant.

If your question means remove iron FROM water, we can give you some links to help with that, but not plants that will do it by themselves. To some extent plants need iron; please read this University of Illinois Extension article on Chlorosis.

Since we are unclear in exactly why or where you want to remove iron - whether it is excess iron in well water or city water, or just iron stains appearing on sinks or laundry - we will link you to some articles on iron, water and plants, and see if you can locate information that will help you.

From Virginia Tech University: Iron-rich soil can help remove lead

North Dakota State University: Treatment Systems for Household Water Supplies

eHow: How to Remove Rust and Iron from Water

Rutgers University Cooperative Extension Office for Mercer County

 

 

More Watering Questions

Recycling bath water from Austin
July 03, 2012 - Is using bath water going to hurt my plants or grass? If I use water from the bath on vegetables and fruits will the soap be absorbed by the fruit and/or vegetables thereby transferring to us when we ...
view the full question and answer

Shriveling agave from Miami Florida
August 23, 2013 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Most upset - My beautiful agave (wish I could have submitted an image) has stared to misbehave. The once first liquid filled leaves, are starting to look more like the skin ...
view the full question and answer

Watering Houseplants with Soapy Water
August 22, 2011 - I accidentally watered my house plants with a container that had a some dishsoap in it. Will they be okay? One of the plants is a 20yr old cactus, with small roots.
view the full question and answer

Overwatering and fertilization of whiteleaf manzanita
July 27, 2007 - Hi, I have an Arctostaphylos Dr. Hurd, southern California coast, several years old, 10 feet, that has a few large branches with yellowing and spotted leaves... also dropping many. causes? remedy? sh...
view the full question and answer

Failure to thrive of Hamelia patens in Laredo
September 19, 2008 - I have a question regarding Hamelias patens(firebush)that I have been trying to grow for 2 years. I live in Laredo, Texas and this area should be an excellent climate for this plant. I planted 12 of t...
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