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

Tuesday - April 30, 2013

From: Huntsville, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identification of three-petaled lilac colored flower in Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I found a single bloom. It has three petals, lilac colored with white spots toward the center with purple dots. The stamens are a greenish color. Bloom has an iris appearance. Can't find it in my Texas Wildflowers book by Campbell and Lynn Loughmiller. Yesterday I discovered Frog Fruit along the roadside. It too isn't in their book. Can you identify the lilac flower?

ANSWER:

From your description it sounds as if you found Herbertia lahue (Prairie nymph) or the bluer variety,  Herbertia lahue ssp. caerulea (Prairie nymph).  Here are photos from Southeastern Flora.  You are right that it isn't in Campbell and Lynn Loughmiller's 1984 book, Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide or in the 2006 edition with revisions by Damon Waitt.

Another possibility is Alophia drummondii (Propeller flower).  This wildflower is in the Loughmiller's book—in the 2006 revised edition on page 135 and in the earlier edition on page 108.

 

From the Image Gallery


Prairie nymph
Herbertia lahue

Prairie nymph
Herbertia lahue

Prairie nymph
Herbertia lahue

Propeller flower
Alophia drummondii

Propeller flower
Alophia drummondii

More Plant Identification Questions

Botanical name for a kidney-shaped leaf
June 25, 2009 - Dear Mr Smarty Plants, I love the site.. but I was searching for id on this odd plant I have.. I have lived here a few years now, and have seen them before, never seemingly to have a flower..but ...
view the full question and answer

Mimosa pudica or \
July 02, 2007 - I don't have a picture of a flower but I'm looking for a flower that I was told was called earthquake flower. It blooms at night. Could you help me?
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
October 06, 2009 - We have a large bush type plant, about 4 feet tall, fragant voilet flowers, large dark green leaves and spiney seed pods (about the size of golf balls) that have many seeds inside. They started growi...
view the full question and answer

Eliminating unwanted vine on arbor in San Francisco
November 20, 2012 - There is a vine growing on our arbor, it has sickle-shaped pods and is crushing the arbor, how do we get rid of it?
view the full question and answer

Herb used in treating stomachache
May 14, 2008 - Growing up in St. Petersburg, Fl my father had an herb or plant that he pronounced kee-low and I always thought it was spelled kilo. He would take it and pick it, dry it out and then make tea with it....
view the full question and answer

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