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

Monday - March 13, 2006

From: Leicestershire, UK, Other
Region: Other
Topic: Non-Natives, Diseases and Disorders
Title: Problems getting desert western US plant Stanleya pinnata to bloom in England
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I am having trouble getting my Princes plume (Stanleya pinnata) to produce a flower and then go to seed. Do you have any advice on triggering flowering in this plant?


Golden prince's plume (Stanleya pinnata) is native to the desert western U. S. As such, it requires lots of sun and low humidity to prosper, so I am surprised you could get it to grow successfully in England. It is found in selenium-rich soils. Selenium often occurs in areas together with uranium. In fact, the presence of the prince's plume plants has been used to locate uranium deposits by prospectors because of the plant's association with selenium and selenium's occurrence with uranium.

So, it may be a combination of factors keeping your plant from blooming--not enough sunlight, high humidity, and lack of soil minerals.


More Non-Natives Questions

Growing kudzu in Las Vegas NV
April 18, 2013 - Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I have a question about a known invasive species that I know you advise against, but I feel my situation may be different enough that it's worth asking about. Yes, I'm talk...
view the full question and answer

Information on non-native caladiums from Austin
June 21, 2012 - Have you a leaflet on growing caladiums in the Austin area?
view the full question and answer

Non-native mimosa failing to bloom in Leitchfield KY
October 29, 2011 - I have a medium size mimosa tree here in KY that usually blooms beautifully; it did not bloom at all this year. It leafed out well, needs a few dead limbs pruned, but seems otherwise healthy. Please t...
view the full question and answer

Non-native, invasive creeping fig in Webster TX
May 26, 2013 - We've recently moved into a new home in the southeast Houston area. The back of our property has a long concrete wall (gets quite a bit of sun), which we thought we could cover with a spreading vine....
view the full question and answer

Eliminating gift plant from flowerbed
June 20, 2010 - A neighbor gave me cuttings of a lush green plant with a blue flower with a yellow center that is only open in morning. It has become very invasive. I cut it back and dug at least 6-12" deep to get t...
view the full question and answer

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