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

Saturday - April 21, 2012

From: Kirtland, OH
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identity of plant with cluster of bell-shaped flowers and 2 leaves
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

In Kirtland, Ohio. Clay soil. Woodsy, moist area. Stem sticks up about 6 inches; stem is bare except for top inch, where 2 leaves and cluster of white drooping bell-like flowers appear. Ball-shaped blossom is a cluster of 8-10 white elongated bell shaped flowers, each approx 1 1/4" long.Not a wintergreen. We have lived here 28 years and never saw them before. 3/30/12. We have photo but don't know how to submit it. Thanks.

ANSWER:

 I've combined the two questions you submitted and I am sorry it has taken me such a long time to respond; but, frankly, I am stumped!  I have tried doing a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plant Database choosing "Ohio" from the Select State or Province option, "Herb" from Habit (general appearance), "White" from Bloom Color, and "Moist" under Soil Moisture.  The only plants I could find that vaguely resembled your description were:

Cardamine cordifolia (Heartleaf bittercress)

Cardamine diphylla [syn. Dentaria diphylla] (Crinkleroot)

 

You should try the same search and also try varying some of the other characteristics that match the plant or the area where it was growing.

I've looked through the Ohio, Illinois and Indiana wildflower guides that I own, but have found nothing to match your description.

I've also searched on the The Native Plant Society of Northeastern Ohio page, Wildflowers of Ohio in US Wildflower's Database, Northwest Ohio Nature by flower color, Minnesota Wildflowers site by flower color, Michigan Wildflowers page by thumbnail photos, Photos of Wetland Plants from Michigan and the Upper Midwest, and Ontario Wildflowers by flower color. Again, I could not find a plant that matched, but I recommend that you search these databases, too.

Unfortunately, we no can no longer accept photos for identification.  We loved doing it but we were overwhelmed with photos (plus our regular Mr. Smarty Plants questions) and we don't have enough staff and volunteers to handle it.   We do offer links to several different plant identity forums on our Plant Identification page that do accept photos for identification.

Good luck with your search and I'm sorry I couldn't identify your plant.

 

From the Image Gallery


Heartleaf bittercress
Cardamine cordifolia

Crinkleroot
Cardamine diphylla

More Plant Identification Questions

Identification of a mint-like plant in California
July 21, 2013 - I found a plant growing near my apricot (in Fresno, California). It has a square stem which becomes more rounded toward the base. The leaves are smooth, opposite, and they have three to five leaflets ...
view the full question and answer

New thorn/bush tree in Central Texas
September 23, 2013 - In Central Texas, over the last 5 years we have seen a new variety of thorn bush appear. It has very long thorns much like mesquite tree but thorns are every inch or so along the branches. The tree is...
view the full question and answer

Why is Mentzelia oligosperma called chickenthief?
July 15, 2014 - Could you tell me why Mentzelia oligosperma is sometimes called chickenthief?
view the full question and answer

Plant called crows foot/feet used to make wreaths at Christmas
December 20, 2008 - In Pennsylvania there was a green ground hugging vine I knew as "crow's feet/foot" we used in the 1950s at Christmas time for wreaths and window and door borders. It looked like a cluster of bird'...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
August 28, 2008 - Hello. There is a plant growing next to my 4 o'clocks that I didn't plant which is almost the same height as them, but has different leaves and it grows wider. It has these huge light green upside d...
view the full question and answer

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