En EspaŅol

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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - March 28, 2014

From: Benjamin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Herbs/Forbs, Shrubs, Wildflowers
Title: What is the name of the Texas Wildflower that smells like grape koolaid?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Can you tell me the name of the Texas wildflower that smells like grape koolaid? I live in north west Texas and every spring, the low growing purple flowers line spots along the roadside. It's a joy to roll down the windows and smell the sweet aroma!

ANSWER:

When Mr. Smarty Plants hears of a plant that smells like grape Kool aid, his first thought is Texas Mountain Laurel Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain laurel) . The Mountain Laurel grows as a tree or shrub, so it doesn’t sound like the plant you are smelling.  Also, the USDA Plants Profile indicates that it doesn’t occur in Knox County.

This link to Pinterist has a list of at least a dozen.grape scented plants (I didn't realize there were that many). Based on your description, eg low growing along the roadside, I think, from that group of plants, Slimpod milk-vetch might be a possible choice. Astragulus leptocarpus does not occur in Knox County, but there are other species of Astragalus  that do occur in the area.

    Astragulus racemosus 

   Astragalus lindheimeri 

   Astragalus nutallianus

For some help closer to home, you might contact your nearest chapter of the  Native Plant Society of Texas (NPSOT) which is located in Graham, Tx. Someone in that group should be able to tell you the name of your fragrant plant.

 

From the Image Gallery


Cream milkvetch
Astragalus racemosus

Lindheimer's milkvetch
Astragalus lindheimeri

Nuttall's milkvetch
Astragalus nuttallianus

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Is wild foxglove poisonous to dogs from Liberty TX
May 05, 2012 - Is penstemon cobaea (wild foxglove)poisonous to pets, specifically dogs. I was thinking about adding this to my native Texan wild flower section of my backyard.
view the full question and answer

Butterfly plants from Austin TX
December 17, 2012 - I have a butterfly garden in the front part of the house facing the south side. However it is also mostly under a few Oak trees that cast shadow over half of the front yard starting early afternoon. ...
view the full question and answer

Ground cover under Juniper for San Antonio
September 14, 2012 - I have a shaded area under juniper in the Hill Country of Texas that has many sprouts from the tree. We have to weed whack it to keep them under control. What ground cover could I use to enhance tha...
view the full question and answer

Native turkscap failing to thrive in Shiro TX
March 19, 2013 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Two years ago I transplanted several native (not cultivars) Drummond's turkscaps in the proximity of water oaks in the front yard. All get shade and some sun. They seemed to ...
view the full question and answer

Plants for attracting butterflies in Austin
April 28, 2012 - My 9 year-old son is interested in finding butterfly eggs this Spring. His 3rd grade class is studying butterflies right now. I found a Wildflower Center article that lists several plants butterflie...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center