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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 - October 18, 2013

From: Opp, AL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Remedy for sore finger scratched by an Agave plant
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I scratched my ring finger on a Agave plant this afternoon. It did bring blood to the surface and i washed it off. Where the scratch is, is very tender and it is swollen and tingles. Any suggestions for relief?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants is very sorry about your sharp encounter with your Agave.  Agave species are known to cause skin irritation and possibly allergic reactions according to the Botanical Dermatology Database.  We can tell you lots of things about plants native to North America (our focus and expertise) and some of us are "Doctors" (PhDs); but, as far as I know, none of us are "DOCTORS" (MDs), nor pharmacists.  We aren't qualified to tell you how to treat your wound.  You should visit your physician or ask your pharmacist to find the best treatment.

 

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