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?


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 - May 12, 2012

From: Struthers, OH
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identity of plant growing on deck
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I can't find the name of a plant that I had on my deck, it didn't come back this year. It was a bush like plant that grew wild, it bloomed May thru August with red small flowers. My deck gets full sun. I am not sure if it was an annual or perennial but it was in a planter. I'm looking for the same type of greenery that will bloom all summer. My husband is driving me crazy looking in greenhouse for this plant. Any suggestions.


The fact that the plant was growing in a planter leads me to think that it was a non-native cultivar.  Since our focus and expertise at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center are with plants native to North America, we aren't your best source for identifying non-native cultivars.  If you have a photo of it, you can submit it to one or more of the Plant Identification Forums listed on our Plant Identification page.

You do say that it grew wild.   If you dug it up from the wild and planted it in your planter, it may well have been a native plant.  To look for it, you can do a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plant Database by choosing "Ohio" from the Select State or Province, "Shrub" or "Herb" from the Habit (general appearance) slot and "Red" for Bloom Color.  You also can choose other characteristics that help to describe your plant.  Another way to look for your plant is on the list of Ohio Recommended plants which are: "Commercially available native plant species suitable for planned landscapes in Ohio."  If you don't find your plant, perhaps you will see another plant that you like.


More Plant Identification Questions

Plant Identification
November 15, 2008 - Hi, I live in ne pa.i have always had a fasvorite wild flower with yellow flowers in the spring. the plant lasts all summer and fall til first frost. It gets small thin bean like seed pods that I save...
view the full question and answer

Winterberry holly not fruiting
October 22, 2009 - Regarding Ilex verticillata, which I have planted in a partial sun, somewhere between all dry and all wet location, i don't see any red berries, and it's mid-october. We are in the 'burbs of just ...
view the full question and answer

Identity of vine growing in New Jersey
July 03, 2012 - Hello! I am hoping you may be able to help me out in identifying a vine plant that has started to grow from under my deck, through the lattice and up the outside of my deck. I bought the house 2 y...
view the full question and answer

Identification of plant with seed heads like goat head
February 17, 2013 - Sir, I collected some bizarre seed heads from some rough weeds around a stock tank in SE New Mexico. They resemble goat heads, with two long curving horns. I have photos but couldn't figure out how ...
view the full question and answer

Plant identfication
July 27, 2009 - My wife and I have our first summer garden at our new home in the Panhandle of Texas. Included within our crop are several alien large, broad stalk, broad leaved plants with an extremely pungent, offe...
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.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center