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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 is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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

 
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Monday - October 28, 2013

From: Bethel, KY
Region: Select Region
Topic: Vines
Title: Identification of vine with seed cluster that looks like a 3D star
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I found a weird vine on the creek bank with seed clusters that look like a 3D star they also have hair like thorns on them.

ANSWER:

I think the most likely candidate is Sicyos angulatus (One-seed burr cucumber).  Here are more photos from Illinois Wildflowers and University of Massachusetts Extension Service.

Another possibility is one of the Clematis species:

Clematis pitcheri (Purple clematis)

Clematis reticulata (Netleaf leather flower)  Here are images from the USDA Plants Database.

Clematis viorna (Vasevine)

Clematis virginiana (Devil's darning needles)  Here are more photos from the Connecticut Botanical Society.

You can look at other native vines that occur in Kentucky by doing a COMBINATION SEARCH in our Native Plant Database and choosing "Kentucky" from Select State or Province and "Vine" under Habit (general appearance).

If you don't discover the vine that you have seen in any of these possibilities and you have photos, please visit our Plant Identification page where you will find links to several plant identification forums that will accept photos of plants for identification.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


One-seed burr cucumber
Sicyos angulatus

Purple leatherflower
Clematis pitcheri

Purple leatherflower
Clematis pitcheri

Vasevine
Clematis viorna

Vasevine
Clematis viorna

Devil's darning needles
Clematis virginiana

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