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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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Sunday - June 15, 2008

From: Bertram, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Non-blooming orange bell plant
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

My orange bell plant is not blooming. I live in Central Texas where it is hot. The plant has part sun, part shade. Is there any way to help it bloom?

ANSWER:

We don't seem to have enough information to answer your question. Is this a name that was on a label at a nursery? Many plants are on the commercial market now that are non-native and given trade names that mean nothing in terms of identification. The only orange bells we found in our research were orange bell peppers. Botany.com has a good website on the Capsicum genus, which includes the bell peppers. There also is a pepper which is native to Texas, but its fruits are not orange, Capsicum annuum (cayenne pepper), so that's no help. If you could provide us with a picture, we might be able to identify the botanical name and then find some help for your problem. Go to the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants page, under Plant Identification in the lower right-hand corner you will find instructions for sending us pictures.

 

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