En EspaŅol

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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
4 ratings

Thursday - September 04, 2008

From: Waco, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Butterfly Gardens, Shrubs
Title: Information on Betonyleaf thoroughwort
Answered by: Barbara Medford and Sean Watson

QUESTION:

I purchased Conoclinium betonicifolium (Betonyleaf thoroughwort) at the spring 2008 LBJ WC plant sale. I've not been able to find much information on the plant in the typical places, including the Wildflower Center's plant database (the entry has no photos nor narrative info on the plant). I like it very much and would like to learn more about it. What can you tell me about its native distribution, habitat, bloom period, water requirements, typical height and width, etc?

ANSWER:

We agree with you that there is not much information out there on  Conoclinium betonicifolium (betonyleaf thoroughwort). This is probably because it has been introduced to cultivation fairly recently. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Nursery Manager Sean Watson came to our rescue with this information:

"It blooms from late spring to frost, off and on in the summer, with heavier blooming in the fall and spring. Its native range is along the coast in South Texas from Brownsville to just north of Corpus Christi. It usually grows in sandier soil, but seems to be one of those species that is adaptable to clay soils. It ranges from 2 to 3 feet in height, and 3 to 4 feet in width, once it gets going. It has moderate water requirements. In its native range it gets much less rain than we do here in Austin, so, once established, it should take very little water as long as we have regular rains. It seems to volunteer readily from seed. Nice butterfly plant, like the other mistflowers. Queens love it."

Since Sean frequently goes out on plant scouting trips, looking for plants native to Texas not yet being cultivated, brings back cuttings and seeds, and propagates them in our Plant Nursery, he is probably the best possible authority. 

 

More Butterfly Gardens Questions

Butterfly and medicinal plants for New Braunfels
July 10, 2009 - I am in zip code 78132 and we just put in a garden at our front steps- so my choices for plants need to fill a need for beauty and function. I want to include plants that will host and feed butterfli...
view the full question and answer

Early nectar blooms for Monarch butterflies from Austin
May 04, 2014 - Could you tell me any early spring blooming nectar plants that monarchs will nectar from. I'm specifically looking for bloom times in March and early April. I have plenty of May blooms but not ...
view the full question and answer

Yellow butterfly in Tennessee
August 19, 2009 - I live in Crossville Tenn and am seeing a butterfly that is yellow with a long hanging. What is it and what is it doing?
view the full question and answer

Why is butterfly weeds blooming in October?
November 07, 2013 - I live in Horseshoe Bay Texas and have native landscape environment. Last year, in early September, I had a plethora of butterfly weed in bloom and a large variety and quantity of butterflies. This ye...
view the full question and answer

Dieback of Indigo Spires and whirling butterfly
June 02, 2008 - I have an Indigo Spires plant that is turning yellow and dying back. I have fed it but nothing seems to perk it up. I also have whirling butterfly plants that are losing leaves and dying back. What...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center