En Español

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

Wednesday - March 18, 2009

From: Charlottetown, Prince Edw
Region: Canada
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Violets becoming invasive in Prince Edward Island, Canada
Answered by: Barbara Medford and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Last Spring I planted several violets and by the end of the Summer they have become an invasion in my garden. I'm afraid that they will get into my lawn and cause a real problem. Any way of getting rid of them permanently before they get out of the flower beds around my house?

ANSWER:

There are a number of different species of the genus Viola native to North America, but we are guessing that what you have is Viola labradorica (alpine violet), since it is native to Prince Edward Island.

The best approach is to let 'em spread!  As wildflowers go, not many are prettier and more endearing than native violets.  A lawn sprinkled with these little twinkling jewels sounds like a bit of heaven to us!  However, removing violets takes perseverance. You must dig out the plants to remove all of the fleshy roots or else they simply resprout.  Remove spent flowers to prevent seeds from maturing and spreading.


Viola labradorica

Viola labradorica

 

 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Non-native invasive henbit from Round Rock TX
April 27, 2013 - I've read in this book "Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants" that Henbit is an invasive plant in Texas. I've also read that it provides an early source of nectar to bees and butterflies when li...
view the full question and answer

Controlling Phragmites australis, common reed
July 04, 2008 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I volunteer at Cedar Ridge Preserve in Dallas. We are currently chopping down an invasive called Phragmites australis around the pond. The belief is that by continuously cho...
view the full question and answer

Replacement of Arizona ash in Austin
October 28, 2011 - We have two Arizona Ashes in our yard that probably have maybe a decade left in them. We want to get a couple new trees started, so they will be well established once the Ashes are near their end. In ...
view the full question and answer

Invasive phragmites from New Egypt NJ
July 30, 2011 - I have some wetland near a road. It has been taken over by phragmites. How is the best way to remove these grasses and add some diversity to this area. The area in question is approx. 100 by 30 feet.
view the full question and answer

Are agaves really native from Pacific Palisades CA
April 30, 2013 - I just replied re agave issues, and mistakenly asked the source of your information. I see that you clearly noted it, apologies. I would note, however, that the Riverside area is very much a hot,...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center