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
Not Yet Rated

Friday - June 29, 2012

From: Fowler, CA
Region: Southwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants, Vines
Title: Vine non-toxic to alpacas and dogs from Fowler CA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have alpacas and would like to plant a flowering vine on a backyard fence that adjoins the pasture. We live in Central California so we have many hot days during the summer and would like a plant that needs minimal watering. We also are looking for a vine that is non-toxic to our dogs and alpacas. What would you recommend? Thank you so very much for your time.

ANSWER:

We can certainly give you a list of vines native to California and to the area of Fresno County. We think this is important because California, like Texas, has several different and distinctive vegetation areas, ranging from the redwoods to the desert. One problem for us is that you failed to tell us if the vines would grow in shade or sun. When you use the Native Plant Database to make your own search, that is one of the things you can specify.

We can provide you with lists of toxic plants, including at least one for dogs, but alpacas may have a different digestive system. In particular, they will be accustomed to eating plants non-native to North America, which will not appear in our Native Plant Database.  There are a number of websites, some of which you may already be familiar with, on the foods alpaca like and can digest without damage to the animal. If you have not already seen it, we suggest you begin with:

What do alpacas eat?

Next, please read this Mr. Smarty Plants previous answer on veterinarian's lists of poisonous plants for animals. It is better to search on these lists with the scientific name of the plant, as common names can be very confusing.

When we searched on our database, there were 10 vines on the list, of which only 3 came close to being native to Fresno County, and 1, Clematis lasiantha (Pipestem clematis), is listed as being poisonous. Follow each plant link to our webpage on that vine. Scroll down the page to Additional Resources, where you can search on Google for more information on each plant. Since there were disappointingly few choices of vines, you might want to go to our Native Plant Database and perhaps search on shrubs or small trees as an alternative.

Vines Native to Fresno Co., CA:

Calystegia macrostegia (Island false bindweed)

Lonicera hispidula (Pink honeysuckle)

Maurandella antirrhiniflora (Climbing snapdragon)

 

From the Image Gallery


Island false bindweed
Calystegia macrostegia

Pink honeysuckle
Lonicera hispidula

Snapdragon vine
Maurandella antirrhiniflora

More Vines Questions

Vines for a backyard pergola not toxic to dogs and cats
April 26, 2015 - We have just built a pergola in out backyard and are wanting a vine to grow up and around the posts. We have 3 dogs and also have a cat that loves to go outside. We are really looking for something th...
view the full question and answer

Shade tolerant vines for Mobile AL
May 07, 2013 - I am looking for an evergreen vine that will thrive in the shade in hot and humid south Alabama. I plan to plant on a trellis. A flowering vine would be even better.
view the full question and answer

Re-landscaping in Stephenville, TX.
November 17, 2012 - I prefer native plants. We are re-landsacaping, so I need grass, ground cover, vines and flowers to plant in our back yard. We have many trees and the whole yard is shady. A small area might be con...
view the full question and answer

Vine for lanai in St. Augustine FL
August 16, 2009 - What vine can I grow to attach to a screened in lanai around my pool? Will it damage my screen?
view the full question and answer

Identity of vines in Florida
October 30, 2012 - Hello, I have 2 different types of vines growing in my shrubs. They are very pretty and I like them I just want to know if they are poisonous or if they will take over my shrubs. I have not been able ...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center