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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

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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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!

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Sunday - June 01, 2008

From: Cupar, Scotland
Region: Other
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Mystery plant in Scotland
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Hi I have a plant which has self seeded - I think from a packet of mixed salad leaves planted last year. The leaves are green turning to purple, about eight inches long and a bit like a savoy cabbage but open and separate and more spear shaped. A brief 'taste and spit out' suggests that it is possibly a type of cabbage. I'm sure it's edible as it doesn't resemble any local weeds. How do I identify it? I could e-mail a photo but you don't appear to have that option. By the way, I live in Scotland. Any ideas? Hope you can help.

ANSWER:

It would be a little risky for us to speculate on your plant without a picture. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center concentrates its expertise and research on plants native to North America. However, we have people on the Mr. Smarty Plants team that delight in identifying plants, regardless of their native status. Go to the Mr. Smarty Plants page on this website, and in the lower right hand corner, under "Plant Identification" you will find full instructions for e-mailing a picture to us. We look forward to seeing it.
 

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