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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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Saturday - October 27, 2012

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Seeds and Seeding, Edible Plants, Poisonous Plants, Grasses or Grass-like, Trees
Title: Grasses for horses in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Hello Mr. Smarty Plants We just bought 4.5 acres in Travis County off HWY 290. We have 3 horses we keep on it but there is very little grass in the pastures. What is the best type of grass to seed and what is the best time to seed? The soil is hard and rocky like all Central TX. Also we have quite a lot of sand burs in the yard is there anyway to get ride of them without using herbicides. Thanks for your time

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants has answered nearly 8000 questions over time, but not 8000 different questions. Since pasturing horses is far from a unique concern, we are going to link you to some previous questions from Smarty team members who know more about the subject than we do:

Grasses for horses from Hockley, TX

Trees that horses should not be around

Native grasses for horses in Manor TX. Paragraph from this answer:

According to the EPA, Schizachyrium scoparium (Little bluestem), Sorghastrum nutans (Indiangrass), Paspalum plicatulum (Brownseed paspale), Muhlenbergia capillaris (Gulf muhly), Panicum virgatum (Switchgrass) and probably Andropogon gerardii (Big bluestem).

In that same answer, you were referred to our National Supplier Directory, where you can get a list of native seed suppliers, plant nurseries and consultants for youg general area. All have contact information so you can call ahead and determine availability.They should be able to give you very good information on planting times, suitable soils, etc.

Follow each of those plant links to our webpage on that plant, where you can get propagation information.

We also recommend you read our How-To Article, Recreating a Prairie, which is what you are doing, basically.

 

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