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

Wednesday - May 30, 2012

From: Antioch, TN
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Identification, Vines
Title: Identification of vine with 4-petaled purple flower
Answered by: Nan Hampton


Does anybody know what vine has a purple four petaled flower with small bulb in middle??


One vine that I found that meets your description is Clematis occidentalis var. occidentalis (Purple clematis).  The USDA Plants Database shows its distribution to include adjacent Virginia and North Carolina, but not Tennessee. However, there is the possibility that it could occur in Tennessee and hasn't yet been reported.  You can see more photos and information from US Forest Service and from the the University of Michigan Plant Diversity Website.

If that isn't the vine you have seen, then you can do a COMBINATION SEARCH for native vines that occur in Tennessee in our Native Plant Database by choosing "Tennessee" from the Select State or Province option and "Vine" from the Habit (general appearance) slot.  If it is not a native vine, it won't appear in our database.  If you have a photo, you can visit our Plant Identification page to find links to several plant identification forums that accept photos of plants for identification.



More Vines Questions

Milkweed species for Central Texas
February 11, 2015 - What milkweed should I plant in the flood plain behind my house on Brushy Creek.
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native Potato vine from Morgan Hill CA
June 13, 2011 - Greetings from Morgan Hill. CA. I have moved into a home that has a fairly mature (10 years +/-) Potato Tree which has some blue/purple flowers but very few new leaves, it looks almost barren. It gets...
view the full question and answer

Non-poisonous, fragrant flowering plant and vine for Arkansas
June 17, 2009 - I would like to find a non poisonous flowering plant that smells good, that has small to moderate plant growth, that will do well in sandy soil area, shade to full sun either way. Also would like to f...
view the full question and answer

Care and fruiting time of pumpkins
October 06, 2007 - This is my first year growing pumpkin. I have a good vine with flowers now & then, but I still don't see a little pumpkin forming. What am I doing wrong?
view the full question and answer

Problems with crossvine from Semmes AL
January 06, 2013 - I have a 3 year old cross vine (tangerine beauty) and the leaves have started turning black and falling off the plant. I have two plants growing on the same pergola (opposite ends) and the second plan...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center