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

Saturday - April 27, 2013

From: Round Rock, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Non-Natives, Edible Plants, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Non-native invasive henbit from Round Rock TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I've read in this book "Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants" that Henbit is an invasive plant in Texas. I've also read that it provides an early source of nectar to bees and butterflies when little else is blooming. What to do about the Henbit in our large backyard? It's mostly tall grasses, some buffalo grasses, some weed grasses, some wildflowers I am trying to establish. We have straggler daisy in the front yard. This is not an urgent question, whenever you get a chance I appreciate your time, thank you very much.

ANSWER:

According to this article from Invasives.org,  Lamium amplexicaule (Henbit) is, indeed an invasive weed in Texas. Of course, it is a member of the mint family, all of which are considered pushy to downright invasive, so you could always eat it. From Eat the Weeds Henbit: The Top of the Pecking Order.  However, it is also not native to North America, but to Europe, western Asia and northern Africa, so it would not appear in our Native Plant Database, and is out of our scope.

According to this USDA Plant Profile Map, henbit does grow in Travis and Williamson counties. If you consider it an advantage to wildlife and it is not crowding anything else out of your garden, there seems to be no reason to try to eliminate it.

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Shriveling agave from Miami Florida
August 23, 2013 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Most upset - My beautiful agave (wish I could have submitted an image) has stared to misbehave. The once first liquid filled leaves, are starting to look more like the skin ...
view the full question and answer

Can berries of non-native Fuchsia plant be eaten from Duluth MN
August 09, 2009 - Are the berries of the Fuschia plant edible?
view the full question and answer

Dietes bicolor invasive from Brisbane Australia
April 01, 2013 - We have dietes bicolor growing in our garden. I am changing the type of garden and cannot seem to kill it. I've dugged it out, spent too many weekends pulling out every new shoot, used poison, but t...
view the full question and answer

Identity of rubbery-looking tree with long green thorns
March 21, 2012 - I am trying to identify a tree that has a green rubbery look with long, sharp, green thorns. This tree is on my property in Conroe, TX and the soil type is Gladwater clay frequently flooded.
view the full question and answer

Non-native Meyer lemon not bearing fruit in Austin
September 13, 2010 - I have had a meyer lemon for 9 years and it has never produced fruit. What do I do? It has beautiful leaves and thorns but no fruit. Thank you, Mr. Smarty Plants
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