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?


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
3 ratings

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


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


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



More Vines Questions

Native plants for hanging baskets in Abilene
June 10, 2008 - I live in the DRY West Texas heat in Abilene. I'd like to put some hanging plants along my back fence. Preferably something that would attract butterflies. We have a pool in our back yard and almost ...
view the full question and answer

Urushiol Oil Persistance?
September 09, 2015 - I'm trekking into poison ivy infested areas for work every other day. I make sure to wear long pants, long sleeves, boots, and long socks over my pants. I walk into my office to drop off supplies and...
view the full question and answer

Purchase source of Coral honeysuckle from New Boston TX
April 21, 2012 - I have been unable to find a supplier in the listings on your website for Lonicera Sempervirens. Many of them had a variety of different plants listed under this name but none were the 20' species. ...
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing, non-poisonous evergreen vine for California
March 14, 2013 - Hi, I am in the north bay area of California, north of San Francisco, need a quick growing vine to cover a very long section of chain link fence that is not poisonous (back yard backs up to school pla...
view the full question and answer

Looking for a supplier for Mustang Grape vine in Austin, TX>
April 02, 2012 - I'm looking for a supplier in Austin that will have a Mustang Grape Vine seed or plant for purchase. I found Natives of Texas in Kerrville, but if you know of a supplier in Austin, that would be pre...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center