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
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - April 04, 2010

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


There's a wildflower growing on my patio its leaves look like the leaves of a lute leaf sage, it has a flower stalk with yellow flowers. The stalk is about a one foot high. What is the name of it?


In general, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to identify a plant by a description alone.  There is one flower that comes to mind from your description, however.  This is Packera obovata (roundleaf ragwort).  It has yellow flowers on a stalk that is about 1 foot tall and its leaves resemble somewhat those of Salvia lyrata (lyreleaf sage).  If, however, this is not the plant on your patio, please take photos and send them to us and we will do our best to identify your plant.  Please visit Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page and carefully follow the instructions there for submitting photos. 

Packera obovata

Packera obovata

Packera obovata



More Plant Identification Questions

Lycopodium digitatum for Christmas wreaths
December 21, 2008 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, That's it! The plant "Lycopodium Digitatum" posted on your website on Dec. 20, 2008 in response to my question about the proper name of "Crow's Feet" is indeed the pla...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
July 24, 2010 - I was wondering if you could help me identify a plant in the carrot family that has invaded a portion of my property that I fear may be toxic. It looks most like the water hemlock plant (leaf-wise, ...
view the full question and answer

Difference between Oxalis debilis and Oxalis violacea
June 22, 2015 - There are two species of pink oxalis reported to grow here in Jefferson County, Oxalis debilis (introduced) and O. violacea (native). How can I positively identify which one I have growing in my yard?
view the full question and answer

Identification of blue wildflower on roadsides in Massachusetts
July 28, 2012 - What is the blue wildflower planted on roadsides and highways in Massachusetts?
view the full question and answer

Identity of 50 ft. tree
May 20, 2008 - I live in Austin and I have a tall (50-ft) tree outside my window. It's deciduous and has shiny, deep green, spear-tip, serrated leaves that vary in size from about hand- to dinner-plate size. I've ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center