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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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Saturday - June 02, 2012

From: Towson, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Trees
Title: Leafing out problems with oaks in Towson MD
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

3 native 5-year-old oaks kept old leaves until March and are not leafing by the end of May. The few leaves that have emerged are shriveled. WHAT'S WRONG?

ANSWER:

We seem to be getting lots of questions about leaves of oak and other trees not behaving as expected. Most often, we blame it on the previous years' inadequate rain as well as intense heat, at least for the trees in Texas. We are going to look for websites that address this matter as well as some previous Mr. Smarty Plant questions that might give you clues:

Denton, TX

Austin, TX

Ask Extension.org

Maryland Cooperative Extension

We are not having much luck finding information on the specific symptoms you are describing, so we feel it must have something to do with the climatic conditions, but could also be a disease with which we are not familiar. Since we are not plant pathologists, we suggest you contact the Maryland Cooperative Extension Office for Baltimore County. If this sort of problem is appearing in other area trees, they will know about it and have some suggestions. You also might consider having a licensed arborist look at it.

 

 

 

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