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?

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
3 ratings

Thursday - June 03, 2010

From: Erie, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identification of night-blooming yellow flower
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

My Nonna used to have a plant that was a night bloomer. It had leaves that looked like a dandelion, and bloomed a bright yellow flower at dusk. I have never seen anything like it although they were plentiful at her house. She may have pulled them for weeds later in life since she does not have them anymore. I would love to find them again since the blooms almost seemed irridescent.

ANSWER:

There are two native yellow evening primroses that grow in Pennsylvania (I am assuming that your Nonna lived in Pennsylvania)—Oenothera laciniata (cutleaf evening-primrose) and Oenothera triloba (stemless evening-primrose).  Both plants have leaves that resemble a dandelion's and both open in the late afternoon or evening and close the following morning.  You should be able to get seeds for either of these.  Check our National Suppliers Directory to find nurseries and seed companies near you that specialize in native plants.

Here are photos of the two from our Image Gallery:


Oenothera laciniata

Oenothera laciniata

Oenothera triloba

Oenothera triloba

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Identity of a plant in Ohio
May 11, 2009 - Trying to identify a tree/shrub in Ohio. It grows from 6-8', and blooms through the summer. It has small green glossy leaves, and bell/trumpet shaped flowers in pink, white, or yellow with stripes. T...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
June 11, 2011 - This plant will grow 12-15 feet or more in height in the rural areas of Ellis County south of Dallas. In a fractal manner, stems grow out of the stalk and then from the stems. The leaves are green, th...
view the full question and answer

Which one is huajillo and which one is guajillo?
November 19, 2013 - Recently I attended a field trip to the Leonard Garden at the Kleberg Institute in Kingsville. I took a picture of a tree that was referred to as Tenaza or huajillo. Later I took another photo of a ...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification of ethereal plant in Colorado
August 28, 2010 - We live in the south central mountains of Colorado in the upper Arkansas River valley near Salida, Colorado. During the past few weeks we have noticed a very mystic looking plant (flower/grass?) alon...
view the full question and answer

Iris brevicaulis in Southwest Michigan
April 22, 2007 - We live in Kalamazoo, MI (Southwest Michigan Zone 6) and discovered last year that we have an iris brevicaulis (we think) growing (and very pretty) on our property. It has the "zig zag" stem. It see...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center