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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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Wednesday - April 30, 2008

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Pollinators
Title: Blue-green bees
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Over a month ago I sent this query to the AAS Garden Editor. What a waste of time since she exhibited no knowledge and no interest. Finally, she told me to ask you about the green bees that came by in early March. At the time, I wrote that I had noticed that my mountain laurel blooms were attracting blue-green honeybees. They are a dark bottle green on top and golden tan on the bottom, from head to stinger. They don't look like the metallic green bees you find online. I have several clear digital pictures I would be glad to send. I am wondering about these green bees, since friends and neighbors have never seen them. Are you aware of them, or do you have any information about them? --OLC

ANSWER:

Since we do not recognize your bee from the description you've given us, we are going to suggest that you talk to some real experts on insect identification. Bugguide.net is a great resource for identifying insects. Here is a link to their web page for insect ID requests of unidentified species. You can also browse their bee pages if you wish to search for the insect's name on your own. Be aware, though, that many insects, including some flies, moths and beetles, mimic bees - often to a remarkable degree.

 

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