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

Thursday - May 13, 2010

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Invasive, non-native Bryophyllum spp. in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I was given two varieties of what I now believe are 'Mother of Millions' and saw that they're considered a noxious weed in Australia. Are these plants considered dangerous to TX if I keep them in containers? Should I destroy them? If so, what is the best method? Thanks!

ANSWER:

Bryophyllum spp. genus contains many species of this succulent plant. Most of the websites we found are from Australia, which has a lot of problems with invasives not native to that country. We have also heard it called 'Mother of Thousands.' Not only is it invasive but some of the species are also poisonous; allowed to grow in fields ingesting it has caused the deaths of cattle and other livestock.

There are also conflicting opinions on exactly what the scientific name of these plants is; another resource said that Bryophyllum spp is a species in the genus Kalanchoe. You might want to read the conflicting opinions in this Dave's Garden forum website. The information on this site is that it is in the family Crassulaceae, genus Kalanchoe and species daigremontiana.

Whatever it's called, it is native to Madagascar and Africa, and therefore not part of our Native Plant Database. It can be frozen back, but we would not recommend putting it out in the garden. Apparently, it's an ugly plant with pretty flowers. If you wanted to keep it in a pot, we would recommend watching carefully that little plantlets didn't get away and sprout, and keep it out of the reach of children and pets. 

Pictures from Google

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Care for non-native indoor plants
October 20, 2007 - My cousin in Pa. asked me to see how to care for 2 plants in the winter. The first is a Voo Doo Lily and the second is a Bengal Tiger plant. If you would please help I would be able to pass it along...
view the full question and answer

Identification of plant with orange sap that glows at night
June 06, 2012 - I was just pulling up a plant and noticed that its sap was a kind of orange then I noticed it glowing orange at night. What kind of plant is this and is it dangerous?
view the full question and answer

Native alternative to Japanese grass from Lake Jackson TX
May 16, 2013 - Is there a native alternative to Little Kitten maiden grass? I was asked to comment on a plan and don't want them to introduce another Japanese plant into our local habitat.
view the full question and answer

Care of lemon cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa)
May 17, 2008 - How do I grow the lemon cypress in zone 7? I bought one today at Home Depot in Granbury,TX. It had no information. Should I put it in the shade or sun?
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for a privacy screen besides Murray Cypress.
October 18, 2011 - Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in NE TX, about an hour east of Dallas on I-20. I hear interstate traffic behind my house, and have a busy street on its left side, and a school adjoining in back. I thi...
view the full question and answer

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