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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

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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Monday - May 11, 2015

From: minneapolis, MN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Herbs/Forbs, Wildflowers
Title: Weeds from neighbor's yard are a problem.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Our neighbor has let his front yard go wild. Many of these native wild plants are very invasive. How can I stop their spreading into our yard? There are too many to try & keep up with pulling them as they come across.

ANSWER:

WIld plants primarily spread by seed, and they have been doing so for over 25 million years. One way to keep the plants from spreading to your yard is to eliminate or modify the seed source. This can be done by mowing the wild plants before their seeds are ready for dispersal.

This is the botanical answer, but there also seems to be a social problem. Have you asked your neighbor why his yard is a mess?

If you can’t get the weeds mowed, your other recourse is to pull up the weeds after they germinate.

 

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