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?


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

Wednesday - January 24, 2007

From: Beaumont, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Identification of Sphaegneticola trilobata as non-native invasive plant
Answered by: Joe Marcus


Hello Mr. Smarty Plants, I have some wedelia growing but would like clarification on the type whether it is the texana or trilobata. Is the texana a bushy plant? Mine is more of the sprawling/trailing type. It easily roots itself just being on the ground. Also would Indian paintbrush survive in a urban setting? I have some Bluebonnets growing but would like to grow the paintbrush, too. Thanks so much.


Wedelia texana is a spreading, low-growing shrub, but not a creeping plant. You may very well have Sphagneticola trilobata (formerly Wedelia trilobata), commonly known as Wedelia, Creeping Ox-eye or Yellow-dots. It is a native of South America and has been widely planted as an ornamental groundcover in more tropical parts of the US. Unfortunately, it often becomes an aggressive nuisance in the landscape. If you do have this non-native species in your garden, you might consider removing it before it gets out of control as it has in many area where it was planted.

Castilleja indivisa is the only species of Indian Paintbrush native to your area (Beaumont Texas). It will grow in your garden if the conditions are right for its culture. Castilleja species are hemiparasitic plants. That is, they derive part of their food from other plants - particularly grasses - through parasitic root connections. Therefore, it is a good idea to plant your Indian Paintbrush seeds near and amongst grasses. Wildflower meadows are generally the ideal environment for this species.


More Non-Natives Questions

Identification of stem from a bouquet
January 02, 2012 - I have a stem with leaves that came in a bouquet May 2011. They are still healthy in a vase of water tho they have no roots, just stem. On the back center of each leaf are protrusions half an inch lon...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
June 11, 2010 - Dear Mr Smarty Pants.I hope you can help to save my sanity! I am a true believer in using native plantings, having a yard that is 99% native. I hope that fact provides me a little extra credit towar...
view the full question and answer

Planting non-native peach seed from Archdale NC
September 13, 2010 - Planting and watering peach seeds. Can you give advice for my 12 year old who has recently planted some peach seeds in our yard in Archdale NC? Is the fall okay for planting? Watering instructions? I...
view the full question and answer

Growth rate of non-native Asclepias curassavica
April 29, 2014 - As a volunteer at the National Butterfly center, I wonder how long from starting the seeds until the plant reaches approximately 20 cm tall does it take a tropical milkweed (asclepias curassavica) to ...
view the full question and answer

Non-native bermudagrass in meadow in Allen TX
August 17, 2011 - What is the effect of not killing or removing bermuda grass when converting an area to a prairie meadow in Allen, Texas? Most articles describing how to create and establish a prairie meadow suggest ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center