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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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Friday - January 16, 2015

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seeds and Seeding, Herbs/Forbs
Title: What to do about early seedlings
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Hello, Over the last few weeks I have noticed that all my naturally occurring poppies and delphiniums have started to sprout up around my yard. Hundreds of them! I imagine it's because of the early freeze we had in November followed by rain and warm temps, of course. I am not even sure they are going to make it past this week's temps in the high 20's but if they do should I expect them to reach full bloom? Should I ignore them and still throw out all of the collected seeds I have saved? All the areas I would normally throw them are currently full of little one inch naturals so it's all a little confusing. Any help on this matter will be greatly appreciated! Thanks Todd

ANSWER:

Your seedlings should be just fine.  If you would like to oversow with some more seeds to hedge your bets, you can do that too, but chances are the seedlings you're seeing now will develop normally and be more vigorous than plants from later-sown seeds.  Nature rarely gets it wrong.

 

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