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

Sunday - July 18, 2010

From: Centerville, TN
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant identification
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

My daughter is working on a wildflower collection for her Biology class, we have found a flower, that, for appearances sake, is identified in books as Selfheal. This flower is taller than pictures we are seeing, it has a red/purple stem, no downy hair under leaves, does not smell of anise, and the flower coming out of the bracts is a deep purple color, not the light pink/purple color we see of the Selfheal. The only similarity to that plant is the way the flower is bract. Can you help?

ANSWER:

I have one suggestion for the description that you gave of the flower your daughter found.  It could possibly be Verbena stricta (hoary verbena).  Here are more photos from Minnesota Wildflowers, Kansas Wildflowers & Grasses, and from Nearctica.  If that isn't it, please send us photos and we will do our best to identify it.  Visit Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page for instructions for submitting photos.




 

More Plant Identification Questions

Identification of Verbesina occidentalis (Yellow crownbeard) in Burnet County TX
November 23, 2015 - Looked up (small) yellow crownbeard..yellow, no description or pic. Csn you tell me if this is what is in this pic? THX! Can't insert a pic to say y/n. 😟it's in Burnet, Co..SE of Marble Fal...
view the full question and answer

Plant identifcation
October 05, 2009 - I have 3-4' high plants, spaced out thick red-greem stalks, w/slender long dark green leaves, several round "single" light lavender colored flowers 1&1/2" in circumference continuously bloom. Butt...
view the full question and answer

Larkspur with pink and white flowers
July 26, 2014 - Hi - I have been photographing larkspurs (mainly D. bicolor) in Montana for years now and I found one that I can't identify. The leaves and flower structure all appear to be D. bicolor, but the flow...
view the full question and answer

Identifying a plant/weed blooming in Feb. in Texas
February 24, 2010 - Can you help me identify a flowering plant I have found growing in my yard? It is a tiny green plant most months of the year, with very tiny deep to pastel blue flowers on it in early spring ( it is i...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
August 06, 2014 - I have a plant my kids got me, but I cant figure out what it is. It has long thick waxy leaves and instead of flowers the leaves at the top turn white. Do you know what it is?
view the full question and answer

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