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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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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

QUESTION:

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.

ANSWER:

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.

 

 

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