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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - April 04, 2005

From: Wisconsin Dells, WI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Possibility of survival of Genus Castilleja in Wisconsin
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

In traveling through Texas last week we noticed many many little orange flowers which are absolutely fascinating. I found a picture of that flower in your website for Wildflower Days 2005 in the top right picture (I believe mixed in with Bluebonnets). Could you please identify that flower for us and advise if it could survive in Wisconsin.

ANSWER:

The flower is the Texas paintbrush (Castilleja indivisa) and it is not likely to survive in Wisconsin. However, there are two members of the Genus Castilleja that look very similar to the Texas paintbrush that are native to Wisconsin. These are: Scarlet Indian paintbrush (C. coccinea) and Downy paintbrush (C. sessiliflora).

By searching in the National Suppliers Directory on the Wildflower Center web page you might be able to find nurseries or seed companies in Wisconsin or the Midwest that carry seeds or plants of these paintbrushes.
 

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