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

Sunday - March 15, 2009

From: Grand River, KY
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Non-Natives, Container Gardens, Cacti and Succulents
Title: Plants for planting in gourds
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I enjoy painting dried gourds. This spring I got the idea to paint a gourd and cut holes in the side and plant some small blooming flowers. I have seen "hen and chickens" growing out of holes in the sides of pots, I am wanting something small like that but something with blooms on them. Is there a flower like that? I would prefer a perennial and an indoor/outdoor would be nice. Is there anything out there like that? I live in Western Ky. I'm not sure what zone that is?

ANSWER:

Much as we hate to admit it, it looks like this is something we can't help you with. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is focused on the care and propagation of plants native not only to North America but the area in which they are being grown. Very probably, the gourds you are thinking of are members of the Lageneria genus, perhaps Lageneria siceraria, native to Zimbabwe. We agree with you that some kind of succulent is likely the best choice for growing as you describe. We went to our Native Plant Database and found no succulents native to Kentucky. You can very easily go to a large nursery, and they usually have a wide selection of succulents, probably all non-native to Kentucky or North Amerca. Since we can't help you from our database, we found several websites that might give you some information: The Succulent Page, an Associated Content site on Decorating Gourds which includes information on making planters, and a plantzafrica site Lageneria siceraria. If, when you are shopping for succulents, you find one with a common or Latin name on the label, you might check that out by Googling either or both, which will help you with information on the care and culture of that plant.

 

More Container Gardens Questions

Loss of blooms in potted plants in Hawaii
November 11, 2007 - My lanai is in strong afternoon sun and no matter what "full sun" plants I try to grow they quickly stop blooming. Plumeria, Hibiscus, Echinacea, even Bougainvillea...they continue to grow but lose...
view the full question and answer

Growing conditions for Giant Coneflower from San Antonio
August 09, 2013 - Rudbeckia maxima is considered to be a perennial plant for the sun but I have had a difficult time maintaining it in a pot in full sun before attempting to plant. Do you feel that it will survive and...
view the full question and answer

Native container plants from Hillsdale NJ
March 22, 2013 - Looking for suggestions for the easiest natives to grow in containers.
view the full question and answer

Small area native plant gardening for an apartment
November 14, 2008 - Mr.Smarty, We live in an apartment and are fortunate to have a small area, 5'x5', and so want color! Here in Houston the winters don't freeze much and the summers are HOT. Luckily, we are in the ...
view the full question and answer

Disappearing oranges from Satsuma orange in Austin
June 25, 2008 - I had many tiny future oranges on my Satsuma Orange Tree until a few days ago. Suddenly, all were gone except one. They weren't on the ground and the tree itself seems incredibly healthy. It is gr...
view the full question and answer

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