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
1 rating

Saturday - October 04, 2008

From: Paige, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Seeds for native Sandyland Bluebonnet
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Bastrop County Texas and would like to plant our native Sandyland Bluebonnet, Lupinus subcarnosus. I have checked most of the native plant supply firms, but can't find this species (except for B&T in Europe). Do you know anyone supplying it? Thank you very much for any help you can pass my way.

ANSWER:

You are correct, the usual native seed suppliers that we rely on don't seem to differentiate between the different Texas native bluebonnets in their catalogs. When we searched on the botanical names of the six species of Lupinus considered to be Texas State Flower, our usual old reliable Native American Seed gave us a "hit" only on Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet) and they were referred to simply as "Bluebonnets." Lupinus concinnus (bajada lupine), Lupinus havardii (Big Bend bluebonnet), Lupinus perennis (sundial lupine), Lupinus subcarnosus (Texas bluebonnet), and Lupinus plattensis (Nebraska lupine) did not rate a mention. We discussed this with some staff people at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center who do some of the seed and plant collection for the Wildflower Center. They did not know of any harvesting of Lupinus subcarnosus (Texas bluebonnet), specifically. We are of the opinion that, for the harvesters, just determining which species was which when they were taking seeds would be very difficult, especially since the blossoms are long gone when the seeds are harvested. It's very possible that when you buy a packet of Texas Bluebonnet seeds, you may be getting some of the other species' seeds besides Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet), but who could tell the difference?

We did find a very technical article comparing the soils in which Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet) and Lupinus subcarnosus (Texas bluebonnet) grow, which stated that Lupinus subcarnosus (Texas bluebonnet) did very well in Bastrop Park sandy loam. Of course, we're sure you know that you cannot harvest seeds in a State park, nor from any private property without express permission from the landowners. However, if you keep a sharp eye out during the next bloom season, you might be able to mark some of the blooming plants in the Bastrop area for the species you want, and (remember, not without permission) harvest some of those seeds for your project. Who knows, you may have Lupinus subcarnosus (Texas bluebonnet) already growing on your property!


Lupinus subcarnosus

Lupinus subcarnosus

Lupinus subcarnosus

Lupinus concinnus

Lupinus havardii

Lupinus perennis

Lupinus plattensis

Lupinus texensis

 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

When and how to sow bluebonnets in Concho, Texas
May 25, 2010 - Please tell me when I should plant bluebonnet seeds in Concho County, Texas (near San Angelo). I am getting different answers from different sources. Also, can the seeds be strown or do they need to a...
view the full question and answer

Developing fields with native plants from New Egypt NJ
July 24, 2013 - I have several acres of fields that I want to develop with native grasses and flowers. I would like to know the best time to mow the fields so that bushes and volunteer trees don't take over and that...
view the full question and answer

Illegal to pick roadside wildflowers from Vilonia AR
May 11, 2013 - Is it illegal to pick roadside wildflowers in Arkansas?
view the full question and answer

Bluebonnet seeds north of Chicago
March 11, 2008 - Hi My husband is originally from Texas - we now live north of Chicago. Last year he bought a whole bunch of Blue bonnet seeds from a company that said they would grow in our area... I planted enough ...
view the full question and answer

Wildflower gardening for Henderson Co. TX
August 10, 2009 - We purchased some of the Lady Bird's Legacy Wild Flower Mix and the Hummers and Singers to plant on Ranch in East Texas, Henderson County, that has Sandy Loam Soil. We would like to plant the seeds i...
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