En Español

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

Tuesday - April 22, 2008

From: Mars, PA
Region: Northeast
Topic: Vines
Title: Identification of a vine with thorns and blue berries.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

> Hello, > We have acreage in Butler County, PA. I recently discovered a vine that I can't identify. It's has many small spines all over the stem, then very large and stiff thorns. It has dark green oval shaped leaves. I cut it down out of a tree in the fall when it had small blackish berries. Now I have many small plants starting. It's very hard to pull out the ground even though it's small. Do you know what this is? It's in a narrow tree line that separates old farm fields. > > > > thanks >

ANSWER:

When its comes to identifying plants from written descriptions, a picture is worth more than a thousand words. Since many of us here at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center are visual learners, I suggest that you go to the "Ask Mr. Smarty Plamts" page and follow the directions for sending images located under Plant Identification in the bottom right portion of the page.

In the meantime, I'm going to stick my neck out and guess that you may have a member of the genus Smilax. There are two species that occur in Butler County that could be possibilities: Smilax rotundifolia (roundleaf greenbrier) and Smilax tamnoides (bristly greenbrier).

Another suggestion is to check out help that is closer to home and contact the Pennsylvania Native Plant Society and click on Forums on their website. This site offers help with plant identification.

 

 

More Vines Questions

Which Aristolochia species are toxic to pipevine swallowtail larvae
May 27, 2009 - In a May 30, 2008 question regarding the toxicity of certain Aristolochia species to pipevine swallowtail larvae, I had heard the same from at a talk from the curator of the Cockrell Butterfly Center ...
view the full question and answer

Vine for a trellis in Illinois
June 21, 2008 - I live in Nortrhern Illinois and am trying to keep my garden as native as possible. I would like to grow something on a trellis in part sun. It looks like a regional clematis is a possibility, but d...
view the full question and answer

Plant to hang over and cover a wall
May 21, 2010 - HI! this is a stumper for me! I have a 6 foot wall bracing a hill on one side and a lawn on the other. It is currently cement and I would like to find something to cover it --evergreen would be the...
view the full question and answer

Will trumpet vine strangle tulip poplar in Elkview WV?
April 08, 2010 - I have a trumpet vine that I planted to grow up a tulip poplar. I did not find info that it may damage the tree prior to doing this but have recently been told that it will "strangle" the tree. Is...
view the full question and answer

When to prune Texas Coral Honeysuckle in Iredell, TX?
January 31, 2012 - When can I prune Texas coral honeysuckle? It needs to be pruned so that it will fill out. Also, how much do I prune it? Thank you,
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center