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

Saturday - July 09, 2011

From: Starkville, MS
Region: Southeast
Topic: Non-Natives, Propagation
Title: Non-native Moth Mullein as a garden plant from Starksville MS
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I collected seeds from a beautiful Moth Mullein growing in a lot which will soon be bulldozed. Would I regret sowing them in the back of a sunny perennial bed this fall. These are from the white-pink variety. Thanks

ANSWER:

Well, we would certainly regret it. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, propagation and protection of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which those plants grow natively. Verbascum blattaria, moth mullen, is native to Africa, Asia and Central Southern Europe. This article from Illinois Wildflowers has the most comprehensive information on it that we could find. Some of the information we extracted from that includes that it self-seeds freely and you would need to be constantly deadheading the flowers to prevent the seeding. It is considered a seed contaminant; in other words, seeds may be gathered for other plants but the seeds from Moth Mullein may be co-mingled, compromising the usefulness of the original seed. It has attractive flowers and unattractive foliage. Putting it in a garden bed with good soil and plentiful water is just asking for trouble for your other plants.

 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Plant identification
February 20, 2014 - I'm not sure of county of origin. It was given to me by someone I no longer have contact with. When I initially received it I thought it was just a small potted vine of some type. I've had it a yea...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on Oleanders
June 11, 2005 - I have 3 Nerium Oleanders. In the winter they come indoors, and are under grow lights. They are in big pots. We just put them outside on patio, and they don't look good. They still have green tips ...
view the full question and answer

Identification of non-native bougainvillea
December 18, 2008 - What is the Scientific Name of the Central Texas Ornamental that people call Bogan Vilias. I think that is the correct spelling. The Plant is Perenial. Their flowers are terminal, the petals are in ...
view the full question and answer

Problems with Texas Ash and non-native Bradford Pear in Hutto TX
January 27, 2011 - We have planted two trees in our back yard. The first one(a Bradford Pear) died and the second one (a Texas ash) doesn't look like it's doing very well. Our back yard is mostly black clay about 1 f...
view the full question and answer

Moving non-native Iris Germanica in Pennsylvania
May 30, 2009 - I am moving from Northeast Pennsylvania to North Carolina this fall or winter. I was told it was possible to save some of my bearded Iris plants by digging them after they bloom and allowing them to ...
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