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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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Friday - April 29, 2016

From: Whitehall, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Cork Screw Rush doesn't spiral in Whitehall, PA.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Why won't the stems on my cork screw rush plant twist and/or spiral? It's planted outside. It was twisting and spirally when I planted it. Growing outside the past 4 years but does not twist or curl like it did the first year?

ANSWER:

You didn’t mention where you had planted your rush plant, but its problems may be related to its location.
I’m providing several links that have descriptions and care instructions  for Juncus effusus f spiralis
    Monrovia 

    Missouri Botanical Garden

    Gardeningknowhow

    Plantrescue

    Guidetohouseplants.com

    Aggiehorticulture

The common thread here seems to be that the Corkscrew Rush prefers to grow in a moist to wet habitat. Note the excerpt below from Aggiehorticulture

"Cultural Requirements:  Corkscrew Rush tolerates full sun, but in our region it grows best in partial
shade and in shallow,  2" to 4" deep, water in bog conditions along a pond edge; plants can also be
grown in less water logged soils; a steady moisture source is needed for good growth and Corkscrew Rush seldom lives up to expectations on drier sites; plants can be divided every few years if they become overgrown."

 

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