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?

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
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

Thursday - November 11, 2010

From: San Marcos, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Vines
Title: Identification of purchased vine
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hi, I bought a hanging vine plant, and came with no id. The leaves are simple, alternate arrangement, entire margin (smooth edge margin). It has an ashy look, like the green purple sage. The flower is small, bluish with a tiny white center. The flower doesn't have any petals, just one piece.

ANSWER:

The only native vine that comes to mind from your description is Matelea reticulata (Green milkweed vine).  It does have leaves with entire margins and a curious-looking flower with a green corolla and a pearl-like white center. 

If this isn't the vine you have, you can search for the identity of your vine yourself by doing a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plants Database and selecting Texas from the Select State or Province option and 'Vine' from Habit (general appearance). This search will give you a list of 140 native vines found in Texas. Most of these have photos for you to compare to your vine.  If they don't have photos on the species page (or if you want to see more photos of a particular plant) you can scroll down the species page to the ADDITIONAL RESOURCES area and click on the Google link to find more information about the plant.  If you click on 'Images' in the side bar or menu at the top of the Google page, you will find photos of the plant in question.

If you don't find your vine in our Native Plant Database, there is a very good chance that the vine is an introduced species.  Given the fact that it is a purchased vine, there is even a better chance that it isn't native.  In that case, you should visit Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page to find several sources where you can submit a photo for identification.


Matelea reticulata

Matelea reticulata

Matelea reticulata

 

More Vines Questions

Edible forest garden for northern Minnesota
March 07, 2014 - I am planning an edible forest garden for northern Minnesota. Can you suggest a list of plants that are native to this area. We are in zone 3a or 3b. Thank you!
view the full question and answer

Non-blossoming trumpet vine
November 05, 2007 - About 9 years ago I started a trumpet vine, from seeds that I got from plants that were invading an empty home. I saw how invasive it was. It had worked its way into the windows and front porch and ...
view the full question and answer

Vines to Cover Brush Pile in Maryland
April 29, 2013 - We have a large brush pile on our property that we'd intended to burn, but it is big enough now that it would require the help of the fire department! I'm thinking I'd like to cover it with native ...
view the full question and answer

Native vine for privacy fence in Tennessee
September 29, 2008 - I am looking for a vine for privacy that grows in width not up; thru a standard 4' chain link fence. Colorfull. Can you help?
view the full question and answer

Plant with dark black/purple berries in a cluster
November 06, 2012 - Today at our local dog park we noticed a bush/vine that's been growing up the fence is producing berries. It didn't flower at all. The berries look to have started out green and now are changing t...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center