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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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Sunday - March 17, 2013

From: Hauppauge, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Planting, Trees
Title: Replacement for maple tree lost in Hurricane Sandy from Hauppauge NY
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Lost a Maple street tree in Hurricane Sandy, was forty-eight years old. Town will not replace the tree. Must do it on my own. What would you suggest? Nothing that grows too tall.

ANSWER:

We don't blame you for searching for a tree not as tall as the maple you lost, for which we extend our sympathy. Down here in Central Texas we experience high winds, forest fires and sandstorms but not coastal flooding. As we watched the news of the storms, it seemed that a great deal of the damage done to structures and electrical lines was by large old trees that were knocked down.

So, we are going to go to our Native Plant Database and, using the Combination Search, look for trees native to Suffolk County, on Long Island. On the Combination Search, we will select on New York and "tree" under habit. Scrolling down the search page, you can find a Height specification, under which we chose 12 to 36 ft. We have checked with the USDA Plant Profile map on each tree to assure that it is native to Suffolk County and can be expected to do well there. Follow the plant link to our webpage on each plant to learn its sun and water needs; the page will also list the soil needs for each plant, but because we have chosen plants native to your area, your soils should be fine.

Amelanchier laevis (Allegheny service-berry)  Map

Ilex opaca (American holly)  Map

Pinus virginiana (Virginia pine) Map

Morus rubra (Red mulberry)  Map

Ptelea trifoliata (Wafer ash)  Map

Rhus typhina (Staghorn sumac)  Map

 

From the Image Gallery


Allegheny serviceberry
Amelanchier laevis

American holly
Ilex opaca

Virginia pine
Pinus virginiana

Red mulberry
Morus rubra

Wafer ash
Ptelea trifoliata

Staghorn sumac
Rhus typhina

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