Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Thursday - October 27, 2011

From: Jasper, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification, Shrubs
Title: Carolina allspice (Calycanthus floridus) in Jasper TX
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Carolina allspice (calycanthus floridus) grows in my yard in East Texas. It is native to the eastern U.S., but I notice there is a variety whose distribution extends through Louisiana. Since I live in Jasper County, is it possible that this plant's range has extended into eastern Texas? I did not plant it but live in an old neighborhood where I first noticed it growing up in a large azalea.

ANSWER:

You are right that Calycanthus floridus (Eastern sweetshrub) is native to the eastern United States.  The USDA Plants Database distribution map shows that the nearest occurrence to Texas is Louisiana for the variety, Calycanthus floridus var. glaucus.  The highlighted parish where it has been reported is West Feliciana.  If you click on the highlighted parish, it will show the names of all the Louisiana parishes.  Jasper County, Texas is probably far enough from West Feliciana Parish for the plant not to have moved over from its Louisiana neighbor without a little help.  The most likely explanation for its occurrence in your neighborhood is that someone liked it and transplanted it there.  It is certainly recommended as a landscape plant and is available in many nurseries.   The environment in Jasper wouldn't be very different from that of West Feliciana Parish so it should thrive there.

 

More Shrubs Questions

List of Central Texas native shrubs
October 28, 2008 - Need to find a list of Central Texas native shrubs.
view the full question and answer

Identification of shrub in South Carolina
December 12, 2011 - First, I'm in Iraq but trying to write a book and have a question on a plant that grows in South Carolina. All I can do is describe it. The bush is normally green but turns red, has large leaves, kin...
view the full question and answer

Texas natives that attract butterflies but not deer
December 13, 2012 - I'd like to have some plants in my garden that are butterfly attractors, but that whitetail deer won't like. I can find lists of butterfly plants, and lists of deer-resistant plants -- is there a li...
view the full question and answer

Is the fruit of American Beautyberry (French Mulberry) edible?
March 22, 2012 - I am trying to find out if the "American Beautyberry" or "French Mulberry" fruit is edible? Can you tell me? Your website's information about this plant has been the most informative informatio...
view the full question and answer

Looking for a male Southern Wax Myrtle in Newport News, VA.
August 20, 2012 - We are looking to add more southern wax Myrtles to make a hedge row with them. We already have one in the ground that is a female. I have called around to see if anyone sells the male but i keep get...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.