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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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Saturday - February 23, 2013

From: Saluda, SC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Propagation, Herbs/Forbs, Wildflowers
Title: Source for dotted blue-eyed grass from Saluda SC
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I lived in Texas for several years and now live on acreage in South Carolina. I have heard that bluebonnets don't grow well in South Carolina. However, there is a place by the road near our house that has dotted blue eyed grass. I would like to buy a large quantity of this seed and plant it in one of our fields. I didn't see any listed at the Wildflower Center. Where can I purchase the dotted blue eyed grass seed and how do I cultivate it?

ANSWER:

Sisyrinchium langloisii (Roadside blue-eyed grass) also called Dotted Blue-Eyed Grass, is in our Native Plant Database. As you can see from this USDA Plant Profile Map, it is not native to South Carolina, but is native to nearby southeastern states, which would explain it having spread to your area. You can follow the plant link above to our webpage on this plant to learn more about its cultivation. This page didn't have as much information as you probably need so we went to the bottom of that page and clicked on the link to Google on the plant. There wasn't a whole lot of information there, either, but there was a technical article from Flora of North America.

Still searching on Google, we found ads from American Meadows and Amazon.

If you are just lonesome for bluebonnets or bluebonnet-like flowers, there are four species of Lupinus (related to Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet) native to South Carolina. They are:

Lupinus diffusus (Oak ridge lupine)

Lupinus perennis (Sundial lupine)

Lupinus perennis ssp. gracilis (Sundial lupine)

Lupinus villosus (Lady lupine)

You can do the same thing we did on the blue-eyed grass, follow each link to our webpage on each plant and then follow the Google link on each webpage for more information on that plant.

For sources closer to home, go to our National Suppliers Directory, put your town and state, or just your zipcode, in the "Enter Search Location" box and you will get a list of native plant nurseries, seed suppliers and consultants in your general area. Each has contact information so you can find out if they have what you want before you start driving around.

 

From the Image Gallery


Sundial lupine
Lupinus perennis

Sundial lupine
Lupinus perennis ssp. gracilis

Lady lupine
Lupinus villosus

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