Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - December 15, 2008

From: Englishtown, NJ
Region: Northeast
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant identification
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for the name of the plant that looks like the spider plant but can survive the cold weather of the northeast. It looks just like the indoor spider plant but it does not produce offshoots. I have seen them at Dunkin Donuts where the maintenance people actually cut and shaped them. Thank you.

ANSWER:

The spider plant (Chlorphytum comosum) is a native of South Africa and certainly won't survive outdoors in New Jersey winters.  The only plant that I can come up with that looks a bit like the spider plant and is native to New Jersey is Yucca filamentosa (Adam's needle).  Here is more information from Ohio State University, North Carolina State University and Missouri Botanical Garden.

if this isn't the plant you saw at the Dunkin' Donuts and you have, or can get, a photo, please send it to us and we will do our best to identify it.  Visit the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page to read instructions for submitting photos.


Yucca filamentosa

 

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Information about native aconitum
February 27, 2008 - There was a picture of a plant in our local newspaper this past week. In the photo ID they called this plant an aconite, a member of the buttercup family. My questions are: is there such a plant? is i...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
June 10, 2008 - Mr. Smarty Plants, My neighbor gave me a plant that is about 3 foot tall, has a main stalk, and leaves that produce small “baby” plants at the edge of the leaves. These plants grow roots and once dev...
view the full question and answer

Books on Lilies
August 27, 2006 - Dear Sir, I am looking for a book covering the Lily Family as a whole, i.e., it should preferably also discuss other Genera than Lilium only. I am especially interested in Lily members occurring in t...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
September 30, 2007 - We found this plant or something or other in our yard, in the area we found it usually stays wet and it was behind a old tree that was done. It has three big green leaves with a white stem that kind ...
view the full question and answer

Tall skinny plant with tubelike flowers
May 14, 2008 - I already posted a question regarding a skinny plant with tiny tube like flowers and you gave me 6 possibilities unfortunately it is not one of them. I happened to see the plant again in my neighborh...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.