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
1 rating

Wednesday - April 25, 2012

From: Old Saybrook, CT
Region: Northeast
Topic: Plant Identification, Shrubs
Title: Identity of shrub with brownish flowers called cinnamon bush
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

When I lived in Vernon, CT, my neighbor had a small shrub/tree approximately 5 ft tall with small ovate slightly serrated leaves. In spring it produced reddish brown flowers that were of a hardened paper consistency that had a spicy scent. The flowers lasted a long time and dried on the shrub. He called it a cinnamon bush. It does not seem to match any of the descriptions you currently have as it does not have yellow flowers. I would like to know the name of this shrub and where I may be able to obtain a specimen.

ANSWER:

There is a good chance that the shrub you are interested in is not native to North America.  If so, it is going to be harder for me to locate since the Wildflower Center's focus and expertise are with plants native to North America.   However, here are a couple of native possibilities:

1.  Calycanthus floridus (Eastern sweetshrub or Carolina allspice) fits your description fairly well.

 Here are more photos from:

2.  Asimina triloba (Pawpaw) has flowers that resemble those you describe, but not the scent.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Eastern sweetshrub
Calycanthus floridus

Pawpaw
Asimina triloba

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification in Norman, OK
October 10, 2013 - I have two large plants in my back yard that just sprang up on their own this year. They are beautiful and the butterflies and bees love them. I think they are a type of milkweed, but they don't lo...
view the full question and answer

Identification of lily in Florida Savannas Preserve State Park
December 19, 2013 - I found a lily blooming in the Savannas Preserve State Park in Martin County Florida. It is similar to a Michaux lily but doesn't have apparent spots. The foliage is also different from photos I ha...
view the full question and answer

Herb used in treating stomachache
May 14, 2008 - Growing up in St. Petersburg, Fl my father had an herb or plant that he pronounced kee-low and I always thought it was spelled kilo. He would take it and pick it, dry it out and then make tea with it....
view the full question and answer

Identification of plant responsible for thorns in dogs' fur
October 02, 2009 - Do you know of a plant or bush that has very small, very thin triangle shaped thorn? My dogs have been coming in with these in their fur and I want to get rid of the plant/bush they are coming from.
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
August 24, 2011 - I have searched through all the plant identifications and can not find the one I am looking for. I live 6o miles South of Rochester, NY. In my woods, I found 2 plants, that are no where else in the ...
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