En EspaŅol

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
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
rate this answer
2 ratings

Thursday - February 25, 2010

From: St. Paul, MN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources
Title: Edible Plant Resources for Minnesota
Answered by: Dean Garrett


Can you suggest some references or resources that could tell me what native species would do well in a Twin Cities region edible forest? Pretty much all deciduous with buckthorn in the understory that I intend to deal with and I want to put back species that will do well. Thanks for your time.


We found two regional books that should be useful to you:

More generally, Peterson's Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants of Eastern and Central North America is a standby on this topic, as is Euell Gibbons's classic Stalking the Wild Asparagus.

We also found information about a food forest garden in northern Michigan, which includes several plants that are also native to your area.

You can also go to our Suppliers search under the Explore Plants heading near the top of the screen and enter St. Paul. Several native plant restoration services are located not far from you, including Prairie Restorations, Inc., a landscape restoration service and nursery that has expanded into woodland restoration. They even do buckthorn clearing. They have a list of woodland species for purchase, some of which produce edible fruits and nuts. They have branches in Princeton and Scandia, plus four other locations farther from you.

Our Organizations search feature brought up several potentially useful regional organizations as well, including the Minnesota Native Plant Society, headquartered in St. Paul.


More Seed and Plant Sources Questions

Searching for nursery with yellow nutsedge in NC
January 27, 2014 - I'd like to plant yellow nut sedge as a cover to stop erosion in a lot. Where can I buy yellow nut sedge plants near Kinston, North Carolina? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Recommendations for a slope in Margaretville, NY
April 21, 2010 - Mr. Smarty Plants, We really love all of your ideas on our 60 degree bank needing plants to keep the topsoil in place. The grasses you suggested are beautiful!!!! They will look incredible against the...
view the full question and answer

Grasses for a prairie in southeast Texas
September 30, 2013 - We have a small place (about 100 acres) in Colorado County, Texas, on the Colorado River north of the town of Weimar. We are gradually clearing (bulldozing) the woods of cedars. One particular spot ...
view the full question and answer

Sources for Eustoma exaltatum (Texas bluebells)
October 01, 2015 - Could you list sources for seeds for eustoma (texas bluebells)?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on basketplant
August 22, 2005 - I want to buy a basketplant (Callisia fragrans). Do you know where can I buy it?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center