En Español

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

Monday - June 05, 2006

From: Los Angeles, CA
Region: California
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Invasive definition kalanchoe pinnata
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

The plant Kalanchoe pinnata is listed as being invasive. What does that mean? Is it a weed or does it interefere with metropolitan plumbing? (root system)

ANSWER:

Here is a definition of "invasive" from TexasInvasives.org:

"An "invasive species" is defined as a species that is non-native (or alien) to the ecosystem under consideration and whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health. (Executive Order 13112).
Sometimes you will see invasive species referred to as exotic, alien, or non-indigenous species. The problem with these names is that they only refer to the non-native part of the definition above. Many exotic or alien species do not cause harm to our economy, our environment, or our health. In fact, the vast majority of "introduced" species do not survive and only about 15% of those that do go on to become "invasive" or harmful.
An invasive species grows/reproduces and spreads rapidly, establishes over large areas, and persists. Species that become invasive succeed due to favorable environmental conditions and lack of natural predators, competitors and diseases that normally regulate their populations."

In the contiguous 48 states, Kalanchoe pinnata (native to Africa, Madagascar, India and Indian Ocean Islands) is listed on the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council's 2005 List of Florida's Most Invasive Species as a Category II species—not yet invasive, but with the potential to become invasive. It doesn't appear to be listed as invasive in any of the other 48 contiguous states, but it is listed in Hawaii by the Department of Land and Natural Resources and the Hawaiian Ecosystems at Risk (HEAR) project as being one of Hawaii's most invasive horticultural plants.

Although it is not listed as invasive in California, you should be aware that it has the potential to become invasive wherever it is present. The California Invasive Plant Council says:

"Across California, invasive plants are damaging wildlands. Invasive plants displace native plants and wildlife, increase wildfire and flood danger, consume valuable water, degrade recreational opportunities, and destroy productive range and timber lands. As a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, Cal-IPC works with land managers, concerned citizens, and policy makers to protect the state from invasive plants."
 

More Invasive Plants Questions

Dog-proof grass from The Woodlands TX
April 26, 2013 - I am looking for a hardy grass that can tolerate female dogs urine. Zoysia was suggested but I am concerned about it being invasive. Any suggestions?
view the full question and answer

Is a mulberry tree undesirable?
June 27, 2013 - I have a hard time keeping plants alive, so I was happy when a random plant just started growing and thriving about 5 years ago in my yard. My mom (a frequent volunteer at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildf...
view the full question and answer

Identity of rubbery-looking tree with long green thorns
March 21, 2012 - I am trying to identify a tree that has a green rubbery look with long, sharp, green thorns. This tree is on my property in Conroe, TX and the soil type is Gladwater clay frequently flooded.
view the full question and answer

Fast growing, possibly invasive trees for South Carolina
July 12, 2007 - What fast growing trees would you suggest for South Carolina? We are heavy clay and the pecan trees we planted don't see to be too happy here. We are looking at the yellow poplar and the empress tre...
view the full question and answer

Non-native invasive Siebold viburnum from Isleboro ME
June 17, 2012 - I was given several small Siebold Viburnum for planting on my Maine property. Even though it is often for sale in nurseries, I'm aware it is listed as invasive in several eastern states. Shouldn't I...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center