Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

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.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

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.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - September 26, 2007

From: Katy, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Fertilizing wild bluebonnets
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Can you fertilize wild bluebonnets? If so, with what and when?

ANSWER:

Hey, if it ain't broke, don't fix it. The reason those wild bluebonnets are out there doing just fine is that they've been out there doing just fine for millions of years before human beings came along trying to improve on Nature. Read this article on Bluebonnets, which is really written about planting them in your landscape. However, note especially the line that says: "Fertilizing is not recommended and may encourage leggy and weak plants with more leaves than flowers." Protect them from mowing, yes, keep them from being stepped on by picture takers, if you can, yes, enjoy them while they bloom, absolutely, but don't mess with them! And thank you for being interested in the preservation of native plants, especially bluebonnets, from the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, which is interested in the same thing.

 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

More on bluebonnets
April 01, 2003 - Is there such a thing as a red bluebonnet?
view the full question and answer

Is Rudbeckia hirta annual, biennial... or what?
January 20, 2010 - The desciption for Rudbeckia hirta says it is biennial and blooms the second year then further down the page it says it is an annual, which is it? Will I see blooms the first or second year?
view the full question and answer

Plants for a Narrow Fence Line in TN
February 03, 2015 - I have a very specific and difficult planting question. I have a narrow strip (about 2 feet at the widest) between my back privacy fence and a wire fence that marks the edge of my property. It is dire...
view the full question and answer

Genetically altered bluebonnets?
September 07, 2008 - I am trying to locate where I can purchase what I consider real bluebonnets not the genetic altered ones. The ones I am talking about are completely blue without the white tip on top. Do you have an...
view the full question and answer

Maintenance of wildflower beds
January 21, 2010 - I need to know what to do with my wildflower beds in my front yard. I created the beds last spring, put in an underground soaker/hose sprinkler system and planted a Tx/Ok seed mix from American Meado...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.