En Espa—ol

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

Landscaping a Fence with Native Plants for Central Texas
March 08, 2013 - I'm looking to landscape my fence that I've lined with woven bamboo. The area gets the hot afternoon sun in summer and is pretty shady in winter. The plants need to be drought and heat tolerant. I'...
view the full question and answer

Plant Suggestions for Shady Site under Trees in Alabama
April 03, 2014 - I live in Montgomery, AL and have a bare area (20' x 5í) that's shady and soil erosion is a problem. Grass stops growing at the drip line of the trees here. Do you have any suggestions for growing s...
view the full question and answer

Care of wildflower meadow dried out in drought
June 30, 2011 - Mr Smarty Plants, Our wildflower patch is completely dried up here in Lucas,Tx. What do you do with the field? Mow it? Trim it? Let it be? The patch is about 1/2 acre.. Thanks,
view the full question and answer

Native wildflowers for Missouri
September 06, 2006 - I live in the midwest, Wright City, Missouri. I have good dirt, not clay or sand. I love wildflowers. What kind of wildflowers can I grow here successfully?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on Rohelís saxifrage
May 11, 2005 - Hi, can you help? Do you know what is a plant named: Rohelís saxifrage? "Bulgaria - Cenral Balkan National Park - Kozya Stena (Chamois Wall) Reserve was established on December 22, 1987. With an a...
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