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
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - September 10, 2009

From: Hilo, HI
Region: Hawaii
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Non-native Concord grapes in Hilo, Hawaii
Answered by: Barbara Medford


Hi, I live in a area that does not freeze over winter, and humidity is quite high. Do you think that Concord grapes will fruit?


It's really hard to say, because we know of no experience with grapes in Hawaii, except to know they are not native to the islands. At the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, we are committed to the use, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which they are being grown. The Concord grape itself is considered to be a cultivar of Vitis labrusca (fox grape), but there has also been a great deal of hybridizing with grapes of European origin. According to this USDA Plant Profile, the fox grape is grown in eastern and southeastern states in North America and, oddly, Utah. 

Backyard Grape Culture from Arizona Cooperative Extension, Yavapai County came about as close to non-cold environment for grapes as we could find. 

We found one website,  Home Tips website Growing Grapes, that mentions, more or less in passing, that grapes have even be developed that will grow in Alaska or Hawaii. For that reason, we suggest you contact nursery sources in your area to find out if they sell the cuttings of the vines and, if so, whether they will fruit. One thing to consider is that grapes are very susceptible to fungal diseases, and hot, humid summers will aggravate that problem. 

Pictures of Vitis labrusca (fox grape) from Google


More Non-Natives Questions

Gardening in Bahrain
June 07, 2011 - Hey, I'm living in Bahrain where the climate is really hot and the soil is kinda very salty. I've got my mango tree in the ground already, transferred it 2 months ago from the pot. I've noticed the...
view the full question and answer

Growing kudzu in Las Vegas NV
April 18, 2013 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I have a question about a known invasive species that I know you advise against, but I feel my situation may be different enough that it's worth asking about. Yes, I'm talk...
view the full question and answer

Controlling Rapistrum rugosum (annual bastardcabbage)
March 09, 2012 - The invasive, Rapistrum rugosum, seems to be especially ubiquitous this year. I communicated with Dr. Mark Simmons a few years ago regarding his research, which indicated that over-sowing wit...
view the full question and answer

Eliminating invasive, non-native chameleon plant from Omaha NE
April 11, 2011 - I have been attempting to eradicate the chameleon plant in my gardens for 3 years. I have sprayed Round Up and covered with newspaper then mulch and it is coming back again this year! I am wondering...
view the full question and answer

Are Verbena Annuals Deer Resistant?
March 25, 2015 - Are Verbena Estrella Pink Star annuals deer resistant?
view the full question and answer

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