Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

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!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - June 22, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Tentative identification of Ibervillea lindheimeri
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live close to the Center and found a plant in the park near my house I'd like identified. It was a vine with bright red fruit on it. The fruit was about the size of a cherry tomato but was oblong. It has a hard rind with bright orange pulp and black seeds the size of a BB. The vine didn't have any flowers on it but could it be a passionflower? Thank you.

ANSWER:

Most likely your vine is Ibervillea lindheimeri (Lindheimer's globeberry or balsam gourd). It is very common on the grounds of the Wildflower Center and ours are covered with the bright red fruits right now. Another possibility is Passiflora foetida (Corona de Cristo or fetid passionflower) which has bright red fruit about the size you describe. It is native to South Texas, but is often planted elsewhere and could be an escapee from someone's garden.

If one of these isn't the vine you saw, please send us photos and we will be happy to have another try at identifying it. For instructions on sending digital photos for us to identify, please read Plant Identification on the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants page.


Ibervillea lindheimeri

Ibervillea lindheimeri

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification, possibly Datura wrightii
August 25, 2010 - I have a plant in my back yard, it had big white trumpet flowers, and now it has huge green pods. Doesn't smell very nice. Could you tell me what it is?
view the full question and answer

Plant ID from Villa Hills KY
April 21, 2013 - Hello I have this plant but I don't know what it is. I want to know if it's edible or what it is. I think it's catnip.
view the full question and answer

Plant identification from Alpharetta GA
September 28, 2009 - I found a thorny bush in a yard. It had either immature fruit or a seed pod that I would like identified. The pod was a little larger than a golf ball, yellow, and a little fuzzy. When cut open it ...
view the full question and answer

Wild native trees with orange blooms
March 30, 2012 - What is the wild native tree that is blooming orange blooms - as you drive down the road thru Chappel Hill, and Brenham area. I've never seen these before when we went viewing bluebonnets - however,...
view the full question and answer

Plant Identification from Cold Lake AB
August 03, 2012 - How can I send a picture for you to help me identify a plant that grows in my garden that no one can seem to identify? I have taken a picture of it but can't seem to be able to attach it to this que...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.