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
1 rating

Saturday - August 31, 2013

From: Gainesville, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Carex texensis for Gainesville, Florida
Answered by: Nan Hampton


I am interested in planting Carex texensis in Gainesville Florida (zone 9). The site is part shade with little water. However, I do not see it listed as being used anywhere in Florida. Is it restricted from import? Our conditions are very similar to Houston.


If you look at the USDA Plant Database distribution map for Carex texensis (Texas sedge), you will see that it is shown as occurring in Georgia, but not Florida.  However, Carex retroflexa (Reflexed sedge) does occur in Alachua County, Florida. Here is its Florida county distribution map.  Carex retroflexa var. texensis is a synonym for Carex texensis so the two species are obviously very closely related. Here is more information about its taxonomic history from Jepson Flora Project; and here is more information from San Marcos Growers in California and BloomingAdvantage.com in Oregon.  The Carex genus is, at best, problematic and since the two species (C. texensis and C. retroflexa) are closely related if not identical, I would say don't hesitate to use Carex texensis in Gainesville, Florida.  It is not invasive and certainly not restricted from import to Florida.

Good luck with it!


More Grasses or Grass-like Questions

Best Time for Dividing and Transplanting Native Bunch Grasses in Jarrell, Texas
February 02, 2011 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, What time of the year is the best for dividing and transplanting native bunch grasses like Gulf muhly, and Miscanthus?
view the full question and answer

Plants for a bank too steep to mow
June 24, 2009 - Like the inquiry made in late June of 2008, mine involves a bank that is too steep to mow. However, ours is facing south. I am looking for a native grass, plant or groundcover. Any suggestions? ...
view the full question and answer

Mowable sedge for Zone 5, New York
December 07, 2007 - My wife (who is from Austin!) and I have a house in New York, warmish Zone 5. We are seeking a grass-like groundcover for lawn areas ranging from full to partial shade. We have a well-drained hill n...
view the full question and answer

Searching for seeds or plants of Spartina patens and Distichlis spicata
October 13, 2015 - My daughter is researching different grasses that help stop coastal erosion. Where can we get seeds or plant plugs for salt grass and salt meadow cord grass? We live near New Orleans Louisiana.
view the full question and answer

Grasses for a prairie in southeast Texas
September 30, 2013 - We have a small place (about 100 acres) in Colorado County, Texas, on the Colorado River north of the town of Weimar. We are gradually clearing (bulldozing) the woods of cedars. One particular spot ...
view the full question and answer

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