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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 - April 28, 2015

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Compost and Mulch, Trees
Title: Can oak pollen be composted?
Answered by: Guy Thompson

QUESTION:

I have quite a few live oaks in my backyard and my flower beds are filled with pollen stuff. Can I compost and mulch over this or is it a good idea to rake as much as I can out first?

ANSWER:

Pollen contains useful nutrients and can be composted along with the leaves that it has settled on. Composting would be more advisable than using the material as mulch.  In damp weather pollen-rich mulch could develop fungal infections.

 

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