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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers Nan Hampton, Jimmy Mills and Barbara Medford to be the culpable and capable parties. Yet, others think staff members Damon Waitt, Joe Marcus and Philip Hawkins might 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!

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

Questions From Near You

Benjamin, TX
What is the name of the Texas Wildflower that smells like grape koolaid?
Can you tell me the name of the Texas wildflower that smells like grape koolaid? I live in north west Texas and every spring, the low growing purple flowers line spots along the roadside. It's a joy ...
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Haskell, TX
USDA Plant Hardiness Zone of Haskell, TX
What region are we in --- Haskell, Tx. (Between Abilene and Wichita Falls)
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Anson, TX
Plants for xeriscape and shade
I live in Jones county, Texas. I would like to xeriscape portions of my lawn. The soil is sandy, I have a lot of shaded lawn area. What plants do you recommend that would be low maintenace, low water ...
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Abilene , TX
List of plants native to the Abilene, Texas area
Am looking for direction to a complete list of plants native to the Abilene, Taylor County, Texas area (trees, shrubs, grasses, cacti and other plants that grew here before cultivation, eradication or...
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Childress, TX
Gaura coccinea for xeric garden
Is Scarlet Gaura (Gaura coccinea) a good plant for a small xeric garden? How invasive is it?
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Albany, TX
Grasses for creek area near Abilene, Texas
I have constructed several low water crossings on a live creek in the Abilene,Texas area and need to find out the best grass to plant to hold secure the soil and keep down erosion. The creek does runs...
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Albany, TX
Possible transplant shock in Red Oak in Albany, TX
We planted a new tree last spring which we were told was a Texas Red Oak. The soil where it was planted is hard clay. We have had a watering bag on it and have watered an average of 2x per week throug...
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Breckenridge, TX
Plant identification of orange-flowered plant with portulaca-like leaves
As a last resort, I'm asking you. The plant identification page has not been helpful. Recently moved to Breckenridge, Texas and found several plants with 5 petaled orange flowers in the pasture. L...
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Breckenridge, TX
Vines and shrubs for wildlife cover and food
I own property in Stephens County about 10 miles north of Breckenridge, TX along the Clear Fork of the Brazos River. I have 45 acres that is open field and I want to provide cover and food for wildli...
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Breckenridge, TX
Decline of non-native weeping willow
I live in Breckenridge, Texas and last year I planted a Weeping Willow tree on my property. It grew fine and seemed to be very healthy until this month. All of a sudden it has steadily lost all its ...
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Graham, TX
Identity of wild plum in Childress County, Texas
I have a Wild Plum follow up question. My wife grew up around the Childress TX area. She remembers going around the creeks and gathering Wild Plums for her mother as a child. Would you have any ide...
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Graham, TX
Calyptocarpus vialis, Horseherb, for shady, mowable lawn
Graham, Texas, Heavily wooded. Too shady for St. Augustine grass. Need mowable ground cover near house. Have heard of something called horsewort, but not able to find anything about it.
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Wichita Falls, TX
Planting Artemisia Cuttings in Texas
I've rooted a number of artemisia plants in water and have transplanted them to pots. They grow so very well in our dry drought-stricken soil and need very little water. I'd like to transition these...
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Wichita Falls, TX
Planting wildflowers from Wichita Falls, TX
Hi, Thanks so much for the answers you give! You've been very helpful to me in the past. I have two quick questions: 1) I have been harvesting seeds from my wildflowers. I wonder when the best time...
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Wichita Falls, TX
Planting time for Helianthus annuus in Wichita Co., TX
I need to know when is the best time to plant sunflowers in the Wichita Falls, Texas area? Thank you for your time.
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Wichita Falls, TX
Evergreen screening tree for Wichita Falls TX
Recommendations for a screen plant. Dry. full sun. 20 to 30 ft.high. evergreen. Wichita Falls, TX location.
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Wichita Falls, TX
Drought and Shade tolerant plants for Wichita Falls, TX
I can find lots of information about planting drought tolerant, sun loving native plants, a number of which I've planted over the years. But I can find very little information about drought tolerant ...
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Wichita Falls, TX
Wildflower seeds for Nocona, Texas
I have a place on Lake Nocona in Nocona,TX and am wanting to buy native wild flower seeds that will take the heat and little water. I have both sunlight and shade. I,m interested in the western prairi...
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Wichita Falls, TX
Need suggestions for plants for a bird/small wildlife refuge in Wichita Co, TX.
With our continuing drought in North Texas, I'm planning to transform my small backyard into a bird/small wildlife "refuge". What types of native plants and grasses can I plant in dry, hot Wichita ...
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Wichita Falls, TX
Native grasses for horse grazing in Wichita Falls, TX
What are the best horse grazing grasses to plant in the Wichita Falls, Texas area?
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Wichita Falls , TX
Smarty Plants on Hesperaloe parviflora
On the home page of this website (right of center) there is a plant with the long stems and pink flowers and with green pods or seeds, also. Could you please tell me the name of this flower? We have ...
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