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
1 rating

Sunday - November 21, 2004

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Invasiveness of non-native Lonicera fragrantissima in Austin
Answered by: Stephen Brueggerhoff and Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

A couple of years ago I mistakenly bought Lonicera fragrantissima (winter bush honeysuckle), thinking it was native. I have since discovered that it is native to China and considered invasive in at least some parts of the U.S. Is it invasive here like Lonicera japonica? Should I remove it? Are birds likely to transport the seed to where it is more invasive?

ANSWER:

Several states that are members of the Southeast Exotic Pest Plants Council (SE-EPPC) rank Lonicera fragrantissima as invasive. Tennessee gives it a Rank 1 status. Rank 1 indicates a "Severe Threat", i.e., an "exotic plant species that possess characteristics of invasive species and spread easily into native plant communities and displace native vegetation; includes species that are or could become widespread in Tennessee". South Carolina and Virginia list it as a C-ranked species which "generally do not affect ecosystem processes but may alter plant community composition by out-competing one or more native plant species. They often establish in severely disturbed areas. The disturbance may be natural or human origin, such as ice-storm damage, wind-throw, or road construction. These species spread slowly or not at all from disturbed sites."

You can see its taxonomy with distribution maps at the USDA Plants Database. You can see descriptions and suggested control measures for Lonicera fragrantissima and other bush honeysuckles provided by the National Park Service and U. S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the USDA Forest Service, and the Plant Conservation Alliance.
 

More Non-Natives Questions

Crape myrtle in Austin
August 01, 2012 - Please don't bother to answer my question about how to treat a crepe myrtle with sticky stuff falling from it. I just found the answer on your site. Good site, by the way.
view the full question and answer

Disposal of non-native invasive clerodendron
August 15, 2007 - What do you do about clerodendron that is spreading like wildfire. A friend gave me one plant before I was acquainted with invasives!!
view the full question and answer

Lantana failing to bloom from Tampa FL
October 04, 2012 - I reside in central Florida. I have planted several lantana the orange,red,yellow type. I don't have proper species name. They have been in the ground 3 weeks with 2" of potting soil around root ba...
view the full question and answer

Non-native Senna corymbosa
September 28, 2008 - I have a large Texas Senna tree - at least 7'x8'. It is covered in beautiful yellow blooms; however, it will need to be pruned in the winter. Please let me know how much to prune it and when is th...
view the full question and answer

Forget-me-nots choking a spring in Bethlehem PA
June 20, 2013 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I am restoring a native plant area along a spring that feeds directly into our local creek. Right now the spring is becoming choked with forget-me-nots, that I am trying ...
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