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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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Wednesday - April 09, 2008

From: Kempner, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Edible Plants
Title: Is horseherb (Calyptocarpus vialis) edible?
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hello, I find horse-herb everywhere. Is it edible, too? Thanks!

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants hasn't been able to find any information about the possible edibility of Calyptocarpus vialis (straggler daisy). None of the reference books listed below under "Bibliography" have listed it.

However, we also haven't found it listed on any of our favorite toxic plant databases:

Texas Toxic Plant Database

Poisonous Plants of North Carolina

Cornell University Poisonous Plants Informational Database

Canadian Poisonous Plants Information System

The City of Austin's Native and Adapted Landscape Plants says that is "somewhat deer resistant", which might indicate that it isn't very tasty—at least not to deer. You probably wouldn't get violently ill if you tried some (if it were deadly poisonous, I feel sure it would appear in at least one of those toxic databases), but you could possibly have some unpleasant reaction to it.

My advice is: Don't try it. Since it is so very common, if it were really delicious, someone would have talked about it by now.


Calyptocarpus vialis

 

 

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