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
Not Yet Rated

Monday - September 21, 2009

From: Abilene, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant identification
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

NEAR ABILENE STATE PARK GREEN RODS SHOOT UP PURPLE BLOOM MID TO LATE SEPTEMBER LONG AND SLENDER WITH GREEN SPIKES ALMOST LIKE A PINE OR EVERGREEN COMES EVERY YEAR NO MATTER HOW MUCH RAIN WHAT IS IT?

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants thinks this sounds like one of the Liatris sp., most likely either Liatris mucronata (cusp blazing star) or Liatris punctata (dotted blazing star).  If neither of these is the flower you have seen, please follow the instructions on Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page to send us photos and we will do our best to identify your flower.

 


Liatris mucronata

Liatris mucronata

Liatris punctata

Liatris punctata

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Tree that looks like cedar elm but with smooth bark
August 09, 2014 - What tree looks like a cedar elm, but has smooth bark?
view the full question and answer

Mystery perennial in Clearfield, PA
July 07, 2009 - I have a perennial growing in my flower garden. I didn't plant extra seeds and don't know what it is..it has palm like leaves and long thin stem. It grows tall, maybe about 10 inches from the ground...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
July 29, 2008 - Greetings, Sir/Madam! What is the name of that weed that grows ubiquitously in St. Augustine, Fl (literally overnight when it rains) and has two skinny "arms", with little greenish beads on the arm...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
April 16, 2009 - There is a plant growing on the side of the road near my home. The stalk of it is thistle like with many prickles. The flower on it is white and has 6 petals.
view the full question and answer

Identity of plant with purple flower and tomato-like fruit
April 24, 2012 - Along the Lake Erie shoreline in Buffalo there is a summer blooming plant with a purple flower and hard flattened tomato like fruit, diameter of a quarter. It has pretty small green leaves with fine ...
view the full question and answer

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