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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!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
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Sunday - July 14, 2013

From: Beavercreek, OH
Region: Midwest
Topic: Invasive Plants, Plant Identification
Title: Identification of fast-growing weeds with orange flowers
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have fast growing plants (weeds?) in my heavily wooded backyard. They reach heights of over 6 ft and have orange flowers. I have spent hours searching the web today with no success -the closest thing I found that resembles these plants are in the Mallow family. They are nearly impossible to get rid of and they multiply fast. I have images I can forward to assist. Thank you!

ANSWER:

Below are various "weeds", some native and some not, that are similar to your description and occur in Ohio.

Oenothera biennis (Common evening-primrose) is native to North America.  Here are more photos and information from Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide.

Hieracium aurantiacum (Orange hawkweed) is native to Europe.  Here is more information from Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weeds.

Abutilon theophrasti (velvetleaf) is native to Asia.  Here is more information from University of California Integrated Pest Management Program.

Impatiens capensis (Jewelweed) is native to North America.  More photos and information from Illinois Wildflowers.

Campsis radicans (Trumpet creeper) is a vine with orange flowers and native to North America.  Here is more information from Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide

Verbascum blattaria (Moth mullein) is native to Europe, Asia, and northern Africa.  Here are more photos and information from Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide and CalPhotos University of California-Berkeley.

Verbascum thapsis (Common mullein) is native to Europe, Asia, and northern Africa.  Here are more photos and information from Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide.

Hemerocallis fulva (Tawny daylily) is native to Asia.  Here is more information from the National Park Service.

Potentilla recta (Sulfur cinquefoil) is native to Eurasia.  Here is more information from Illinois Wildflowers.

If none of these are the weeds that are growing in your backyard, you should try looking through the Photo Key on Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide.  You can also go to our Native Plant Database and do a COMBINATION SEARCH choosing "Ohio" from Select State or Province and "Orange" from Bloom Characteristics: Bloom Color.  This will give you a list (most have photos) of North American native plants with orange flowers that occur in Ohio.  If you still don't find your weed, please visit our Plant Identification page to find links to several plant identification forums that will accept photos of plants for identification.

Below are photos of the North American natives named above.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Common evening-primrose
Oenothera biennis

Common evening-primrose
Oenothera biennis

Common evening-primrose
Oenothera biennis

Jewelweed
Impatiens capensis

Jewelweed
Impatiens capensis

Trumpet creeper
Campsis radicans

Trumpet creeper
Campsis radicans

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