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
2 ratings

Saturday - August 04, 2012

From: Vail, AZ
Region: Southwest
Topic: Container Gardens, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Gregg's mistflower in pot from Vail AZ
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I recently bought a Gregg's Mist plant and don't know much about it. I live in Arizona and was wondering how well the plant will do if I plant it in a large ceramic pot? Will it continue to grow? Any information would be greatly appreciated! THANKS

ANSWER:

We assume you are referring to Conoclinium greggii (Gregg's mistflower). As you can see from this USDA Plant Profile Map, it is native to Cochise County, right next to Pima County, which really doesn't matter so much because if you are using it as a container plant, you have more control over the sunlight and soil than you would if it were planted in the ground.

The first suggestion we have is that you read our How-To Article on Container Gardening with Native Plants. Then follow the plant link above to our webpage on this plant. We would like to point out that this is basically a desert plant:

"Native Habitat: Frequent along stream beds and overflow areas in the Trans-Pecos, east to Edwards Plateau and Rio Grande Plains. Sand, loam, clay or limestone. Seasonally flooded stream beds; plains; overflow areas."

The best thing you can do to help this plant prosper in a pot is to use a cactus or succulent potting soil, or even add a little fine gravel or decomposed granite. Don't fertilize, it's always tempting to over-fertilize a potted plant but this can inhibit blooming. Since this plant can bloom from May to November and is a great butterfly attractant, you don't want to discourage blooms. Good drainage in the pot is essential, which the potting soil will facilitate.

 

From the Image Gallery


Gregg's mistflower
Conoclinium greggii

Gregg's mistflower
Conoclinium greggii

Gregg's mistflower
Conoclinium greggii

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Difficulty with Clay Soil from Palm Bay, FL
August 22, 2012 - I had a very nice little native shady area behind my house for over 40 years, but now it has been cleared except for a 100 foot tall live oak in the center of this raised mound (50' x 80'). I've be...
view the full question and answer

Wildlife Attracting Plants for a Shady Patio
July 03, 2014 - We have a concrete patio that receives 2-3 hours of sunlight a day, so the only plants we will be able to grow will be in container. We are looking for plants that do well in shade, and containers and...
view the full question and answer

Seasonal tasks for Big Red Sage and Tall Aster in Marble Falls TX
January 09, 2012 - I transplanted some Big Red Sage and Tall Aster into my raised bed garden in early summer this year. They've sent up lots of rosettes. Do I need to protect them from freezing in winter? Do I need to ...
view the full question and answer

Native plants for a garden in Greenville SC
July 12, 2009 - Beebalm, Threadleaf Coreopsis, a Yaupon Holly, a Southern Magnolia, and a Highbush Blueberry. And as a ground cover in some areas, we have Cinquefoil (which helped me choke out Indian strawberry!) But...
view the full question and answer

Planting horsetail indoors from Collierville TN
November 12, 2012 - I would like to plant horsetail indoors. Can it handle the inside? Will it try to go dormant or it that a temperature trigger which means it will not go dormant?
view the full question and answer

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