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
1 rating

Tuesday - May 19, 2009

From: Mozambique, Other
Region: Other
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Controlling Thermopsis rhombifolia (buffalo bean) in Mozambique
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Mark Simmons

QUESTION:

Dear Mr. Smarty, Please,can you assist. We have a plot on a dam in Mozambique. It has been invaded with Thermopsis rhombifolia (we call it buffalo bean), it is very hardy and if you fall in it or just touch it, it is very itchy and sore. We would like to try and destroy a lot, but need to know how we can do it and what we can use, without destroying any of the water weeds, etc., in case what we use runs into the dam.

ANSWER:

Thermopsis rhombifolia (prairie thermopsis), a native of Canada and and the Great Plains area of the US, is a legume—member of the Family Fabaceae (Pea/bean family). For selective treatment a legume-specific herbicide with the active ingredient clopyralid (e.g. Transline) might be the best bet. Alternatively, if you're up to experimentation, prescribed fire could be tested, although spring fire has been demonstrated to encourage this species on trails in Canada.  Using fire at different times of years has been shown to differentially affect species.

Thermopsis rhombifolia

Thermopsis rhombifolia

 

 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Snails in the ice plants in California
May 31, 2011 - Ice plants and snails. Every morning when I go outside I see at least 20 or more snails. Is there a certain way that I should have planted them that would have prevented them from destroying my plant?...
view the full question and answer

Could lilacs grow in Georgia?
April 27, 2010 - Hi Mr Smarty Pants, First off, I want to commend you on your promotion of native plants. I am passionately anti-invasive plants (in fact, it was the subject of my master's thesis). That being said...
view the full question and answer

Skunk cabbage to repel rabbits in Wichita KS
May 22, 2011 - I would like to find a skunk cabbage plant or oil of skunk cabbage to drive away rabbits from my garden.. It does work for several yrs ago I purchased a plant from a garden shop but can not find it no...
view the full question and answer

Removal of invasive non-native Chinese wisteria
September 10, 2007 - I am going to be removing my ubiquitous chinese wisteria very soon (the method I'm going to use is undetermined). If I decide to use Round-up on the cut-stem (which may take more than one application...
view the full question and answer

Dandelions in bluebonnets in Bastrop TX
May 31, 2012 - I have a 20'x60' front yard area where I planted bluebonnets. It has become horrifically inundated with dandelions. How do I eradicate the dandelions while preserving the bluebonnets ? Thanks ...
view the full question and answer

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