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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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Wednesday - July 08, 2009

From: Fernandina Beach, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Vines
Title: Vine like blackberry with 3 leaves & thorns in Florida
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

What vine looks like a blackberry vine but has three leaves and thorns?

ANSWER:

We took a look at Toxicodendron radicans (eastern poison ivy), which has 3 leaves and old vines have a hairy appearance, but not thorns. We also looked at some of the briars, including Mimosa microphylla (littleleaf sensitive-briar). The briars all seem to have pinnate leaves, but they do have thorns. Another possibility is Smilax bona-nox (saw greenbrier), but it doesn't appear to have three leaves together. So, unless it's one of those, we're stumped. Please go to our Mr. Smarty Plants Plant Identification page, and follow the instructions for submitting a photo, with information on where the plant was found, etc. After we receive that, we'll try to identify the plant.


Toxicodendron radicans

Toxicodendron radicans

Mimosa microphylla

Smilax bona-nox

 

 

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