Explore Plants

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
    
 

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 - June 23, 2011

From: Fairbanks, AK
Region: Northwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant Identification
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Anne Ruggles

QUESTION:

I live in Alaska and have TEENY cute 5 petaled white flowers growing on my lawn. They are very short, maybe 2 inches in height. The flower is about 1/2 inch wide. They look like a perfect tiny daisy. I tried to copy a picture here, but it won't let me.

ANSWER:

Here are some possibilities for your tiny daisy-like flower:

Moehringia lateriflora (Bluntleaf sandwort) [synonym=Arenaria lateriflora] and here are photos and more information.  Here is the USDA Plants Database record with the distribution map and more photos.

The next three do have 5 petals but because the petals are deeply notched it looks as if they have 10 petals. Their tiny white flowers do resemble daisies.

Cerastium arvense (Field chickweed) and here are more photos and information.

Cerastium nutans (nodding chickweed) and here are more photos and information.

Cerastium fontanum ssp. vulgare (big chickweed) and here are more photos and information.

Another possibility that does grow in Fairbanks, but in wet places (possibly not your lawn), is Saxifraga caespitosa (Tufted alpine saxifrage).  You can see photos here and here.

If none of these appear to be your little lawn daisy, please visit our Plant Identification page to find links to garden forums that do accept photos for identification.  Sorry, but Mr. Smarty Plants' database isn't set up to receive photos.

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification
August 24, 2008 - Please help us identify a woodland plant whose fruiting stem looks very similar to a corncob stuck into the ground, pointy end up. It sticks up about 4-5" above the ground. The largish pale yellow fr...
view the full question and answer

Non-native eleagnus from Jesup GA
January 17, 2014 - An elderly farmer has told me about a plant called Alley Agnes, but I can't find any plant by this name anywhere. He doesn't know another name for it, says it's what everyone has always called it i...
view the full question and answer

Identification of purple wildflower shaped like a bottle rocket
June 19, 2013 - Dear Smarty Plants, the other day while driving north on 281 from San Antonio I noticed a purple wildflower that was shaped sort of like a bottle rocket, seemed to have leaves similar to verbena and ...
view the full question and answer

Idendification of plants with white cotton ball flowers
July 03, 2012 - A few months ago I found a small plant with a white cotton ball type flower on it. It had red spots. It was on the bank of the Nashua river. I had never seen this before, and I am having a hard time ...
view the full question and answer

Fragrant night blooming plant
June 09, 2009 - My Grandmother use to have a night fragrant night blooming plant that she referred to as "baby Jesus being born" when it bloomed. Are you familiar with anything of this nature?
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.