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
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - November 25, 2008

From: Wilmette, IL
Region: Midwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant identification
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live north of Chicago. I have been Gardening just about everything forever. I finally got a surprise gift from a migrating bird, squirrel or possibly my kitchen composting. Apparently from a seed grew this single tall and wide (8ft high x 8ft wide)plant/tree/bush ?? The uniqueness is in the "rhubarb" colored stem and branches (stem is hollow and branches are more plant than woody). THIS PLANT BEARS AN AWESOME VERTICAL CLUSTER OF DARK PURPLE BERRIES (40-50)ON A SINGLE STEM UNLIKE A GRAPE CLUSTER SPREAD OUT ON FINGERS, THIS FRUIT BEARS ON A SINGLE VERTICAL STEM (DK RED). VERY PROLIFEROUS AND A REAL TREASURE. Please help me with any or all information. I have to say I am not sure if it is perennial or re-seeds itself. It has grown back three years and I hope a fourth. Thank you

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants thinks this sounds like Phytolacca americana (American pokeweed). If this doesn't happen to be your plant, please send us a photo and we will do our best to identify it.  For instructions for submitting photographs, please visit the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page.

Phytolacca americana

Phytolacca americana

Phytolacca americana

Phytolacca americana

 

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Searching for a dye made from a French weed
June 09, 2009 - Dear Mr smarty plants, I watched a gardening show on cable and they talked about a place in France where they use a weed called Wod to make dye and dye fabric and several other items to sell. It was ...
view the full question and answer

Incomplete question from Austin TX
June 16, 2012 - If I asked this same question but in regards to Austin TX what would the answer be? My 2 plants have spent 2 winters indoors (they are huge now and never stop blooming), but am wondering about leaving...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
September 29, 2010 - What is the name of the beautiful pink flowers with tiny Orchid-like blossoms occurring now all alongside the highways in the Bee Cave, TX and hill country area? Is it "slenderleaf false foxglove",...
view the full question and answer

Photographing and Identifying trees of Long Island
June 01, 2013 - After being in a car accident I got into photography as sports are a distant memory due to my injuries. As a new hobby I thought of taking pictures of trees and then finding out their species name. ...
view the full question and answer

Non-native eleagnus from Jesup GA
January 17, 2014 - An elderly farmer has told me about a plant called Alley Agnes, but I can't find any plant by this name anywhere. He doesn't know another name for it, says it's what everyone has always called it 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