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

Monday - August 13, 2012

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identity of very tall plants in Austin, TX
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have these huge tall plants. They don't seem to want to bloom and they are shading out my other natives. They get very tall. 10 feet or so. What is it?

ANSWER:

Well, a little more about the plants would be a great help in identifying them; for instance, information about leaf shape, leaf arrangement on the stem, plant shape, whether the plants are growing in a flower bed, in a field, etc.  However, knowing what happens to be growing around Austin right now and can grow quickly into a tall plant in one season, I'm placing my bet on:

 Ambrosia trifida var. texana (Giant ragweed)

Just in case that's not your plant, another possibility would be:  Baccharis neglecta (False willow)

If neither of these is the plant that 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


Texan great ragweed
Ambrosia trifida var. texana

Texan great ragweed
Ambrosia trifida var. texana

Texan great ragweed
Ambrosia trifida var. texana

Texan great ragweed
Ambrosia trifida var. texana

False willow
Baccharis neglecta

False willow
Baccharis neglecta

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification
August 15, 2008 - Virginia Creeper or something else? I live in McKinney, Tx, and have a limestone escarpment in back that leads down to a "white rock " creek. A wrought iron fence separates the yard area from the ri...
view the full question and answer

Information about native aconitum
February 27, 2008 - There was a picture of a plant in our local newspaper this past week. In the photo ID they called this plant an aconite, a member of the buttercup family. My questions are: is there such a plant? is i...
view the full question and answer

Plant ID from Bloomsdale MO
August 19, 2010 - I have found a plant growing on the side of the road in a weedy area, looks like a poker flower, the plant has Red/orange seed pods growing to a point. no flowers right now. grows on a stem very much...
view the full question and answer

Is there a variety of bluebonnet called black gumbo
February 04, 2008 - I live in Grimes County, Texas on the eastern edge of the Blackland Prairie. A few years ago my hillside of Bluebonnet seed was harvested. I was told it was a rare 'black gumbo' variety of bluebon...
view the full question and answer

Plant ID for that looks like lemon verbena
May 03, 2014 - I have a weed that looks a bit like Lemon Verbena with tiny purple flowers sprouting again this spring in my pasture. It seems to like sandy, acidy sunny areas and smells nice when you even brush up ...
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