Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

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!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - August 13, 2012

From: Hartwell, GA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identity of plant that resembles rosemary in Georgia
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hi, I am an herbalist, but have been unable to identify this plant and it's driving me nuts since I cannot find any information on it. I live in NE Ga and have a plant that grows here that looks like rosemary it grows wild in very unkempt yards or fields, it also has a smell like rosemary, but with a slightly sweeter smell. It only grows in one stalk (as opposed to a bush like plant), but the leaves are slightly bigger and a lot denser than that of rosemary. I have a friend that lives south of me in Madison Ga who has a farm and has fields of it..we would like to know exactly what it is and if we can use it. Thank you!

ANSWER:

You may have stumped Mr. Smarty Plants because I can't find anything that exactly matches your description.   Here are some suggestions, however:

Eupatorium capillifolium (Dog fennel) has foliage that looks similar to rosemary, but the scent of crushed leaves is described as "rather unpleasant."  Here are photos and more information from Plants of Southern New Jersey and North Carolina State University.

 Conyza canadensis (Canadian horseweed) looks somewhat like rosemary but is not described as smelling like rosemary.  Here are photos and more information from Illinois Wildflowers.

Pycnanthemum tenuifolium (Narrowleaf mountain mint) has foliage that looks like rosemary; however, it doesn't tend to grow as a single stalk.  Its leaves do have a pleasant minty scent.  Here are photos and more information from Illinois Wildflowers and Connecticut Botanical Society.

Pycnanthemum virginianum (Virginia mountain mint) with rosemary-like foliage that is mint scented.  Here are photos and more information from Illinois Wildflowers and Plants of Wisconsin.

Hedeoma hispida (Rough false pennyroyal) has foliage that looks somewhat like rosemary and is fragrant.  Here are more photos and information from Plants of Wisconsin and Southeastern Flora.

Hedeoma pulegioides (American false pennyroyal) looks a bit like rosemary, although the plants are are only about a foot tall. They have a strong, pleasant scent.  Here are photos and more information from Illinois Wildflowers and Purdue Horticulture Service.

If none of these is the plant you are seeing, take photos and then visit our Plant Identification page to find links to plant identification forums that accept photos of plants for identification.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Horseweed
Conyza canadensis

Rough false pennyroyal
Hedeoma hispida

Narrowleaf mountain mint
Pycnanthemum tenuifolium

Virginia mountain mint
Pycnanthemum virginianum

More Plant Identification Questions

Smarty Plants on Smoke Tree
July 11, 2005 - I live in Indianapolis Indiana and there is this wonderful tree on my street which has the most unusual flowers that I've ever seen. They look like pink and white fiber optics. Spencer gift stores us...
view the full question and answer

Identity of cinnamon-scented bush from Pennsylvania
May 23, 2015 - I had a "bush" in PA that the woman who sold it to me called a cinnamon bush. It had long branches with large (approx 5" long and 3" wide) dark green leaves attached evenly along each side of the...
view the full question and answer

Non-blooming of an apparent yucca in Ohio
March 09, 2009 - I have what looks like a yucca plant in my flower bed. but in the 3 years we have lived here it has never bloomed. It did get a little bigger and has always been green. If it is a yucca, is there any ...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
August 03, 2008 - 6 2 ft. spikes appeared in an infertile part of my garden. They have a huge quantity of very tiny ochid-like flowers, mostly white with pink tinge. I took it to the master gardeners here and no one co...
view the full question and answer

Identification of seedlings
December 20, 2014 - So..last spring I spread out a bag of random Texas wildflower seed I bought at Home Depot. Bautiful things happened. Since that time I've collected seeds while out camping etc and just been chunking ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.