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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.

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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.

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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!

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Tuesday - July 03, 2012

From: Shawano, WI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Information about Rose Twisted-Stalk
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Dear Mr.(?) Smarty Plants- I LOVE your name! I cannot find the plant I'm looking to identify in your collection. I saw it in a wildflower book as: Rose Twisted-Stalk. Spring blooming, little pink bell-shaped flowers then berries that go from green to red. But that book said the stem was hairy. The plant I have in my wooded yard seems identical except the stem is perfectly smooth-no hair. Could you help? THANK YOU!!!

ANSWER:

Streptopus lanceolatus (Twistedstalk) is the plant listed in our Native Plant Database as "Rosy Twisted-stalk."

The information from eFloras, the online version of Flora of North America, for this plant says:

"Stems simple or occasionally branched, 1.5–4(–8) dm, glabrous, nodes sparsely pubescent-fringed." 

"Glabrous" in our Glossary of Botanical Terms is defined as:  smooth; hairless.

The nodes (where the leaves are connected to the stalk), being "sparsely pubescent", should have some small amount of soft hairs on them, but the stem itself is described as being smooth.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Twistedstalk
Streptopus lanceolatus var. roseus

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