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?


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

Tuesday - August 20, 2013

From: East Northport , NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Non-Natives, Trees
Title: Non-native Japanese maple for East Northport NY
Answered by: Barbara Medford


I live in NY and I am looking to plant a Japanese maple in front of my house. It would be in front of a window so I'm thinking should I get a dwarf? Or a semi dwarf? I know I want a red color but unsure of which one to choose. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, home of Mr. Smarty Plants, is comitted to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which those plants evolved; in your case, Suffolk County, NY on Long Island. Since Acer Palmatum (Japanese Maple) is native to Japan, North and South Korea, China, it is not in our Native Plant Database and out of our area of expertise.

According to this USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map for Suffolk County on Long Island NY, you are in Zone 7b, which this article from North Carolina State University says is within the plant's normal range.

This USDA Plant Profile Map shows it growing only in Manchester and Suffolk Counties in New York, where being close to or surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean moderates the climate.



More Non-Natives Questions

Plant ID of invasive vine from Austin
August 21, 2013 - A friend lives in southwest Austin and has a vine that's coming up all over her yard. I am a Williamson County Master Gardener and have asked all the garden gurus in my group what it is from a photo ...
view the full question and answer

Saving non-native sempervivum from accidental weed killer application from Nashville TN
June 15, 2012 - How to save a 'Live Forever' plant that had weed killer put on it by mistake.
view the full question and answer

Pruning smoketree in New Jersey
May 29, 2009 - How far from ground level do I prune a relatively young Smoke tree to get the bush effect?
view the full question and answer

Edibility of native and non-native wild onions
July 07, 2006 - I'd like to know if the seeds of the wild onions found in southeastern Pennsylvania (possibly called Allium ascalonicum) are edible at all- these are the seeds that grow on top of the stalk, after ...
view the full question and answer

Yellowing leaves on non-native weeping birch in Brick NJ
August 16, 2009 - I have a young weeping birch-planted in spring-we water regularly, it gets good sun-and rain has been perfect--the leaves get yellow--and now they are a lot! Whats the matter? I love my little tree.I ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center