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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

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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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.

 
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Wednesday - September 02, 2009

From: Ballinger, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Vines
Title: Identity of a vine in Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am trying to identify a native vine in Runnels County, Texas. It is approximately 20 feet long, growing on a fence. The leaves are simple leaves, range in size from 1/2 " to 2" and thick (similar to the thickness of a kalanchoe). The are shaped similar to a red oak and alternate on the stem. The flowers are small, green round buds similar to a poinsettia flower. The berries are black and fleshy and very popular with birds. Can you help me? Thank you.

ANSWER:

From your description, the closest match is Cissus trifoliata (sorrelvine).  It has fleshy leaves and black berries.  Here are photos showing the flowers. (Note:  Cissus incisa is a synonym of C. trifoliata).  If this isn't the vine you saw and you have (or can take) photos, please send them to us and we will do our best to identify your vine.  Please visit Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page to read instruction for submitting photos.

 


Cissus trifoliata

Cissus trifoliata

Cissus trifoliata

Cissus trifoliata

 

 

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