Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

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

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

Monday - March 09, 2015

From: Santa Rosa, CA
Region: California
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Indentification of yellow four-petaled plant in Sonoma County CA
Answered by: Nan Hampton


Yellow four-petaled plant - low to the ground. Along the coast of CA in Sonoma County (near Bodega Bay) Might be Frying Pan but I can't find a decent description or the botanical name to look it up. Thanks


Eschscholzia lobbii (Frying pans) is a relative of Eschscholzia californica (California poppy).  Although E. lobbii is not shown to occur in Sonoma County, it is shown to occur in adjacent Napa and Mendocino Counties on the distribution map of the USDA Plants Database.

Both Eschscholzia caespitosa (Tufted poppy) and Eschscholzia californica (California poppy) occur in Sonoma County as shown on their respective USDA Plants Database distribution maps: (E. caespitosa) and (E. californica).

E. hypecoides (San Benito poppy) occurs in adjacent Mendocino County.

None of the other species in the Genus Eschscholzia (California poppies) listed by the USDA Plants Database occurs in, or adjacent to, Sonoma County.

You can see a key to the Genus Eschscholzia on the Flora of North America website and you can find a description of E. lobbii there, too.

You can see photos of E. lobbii, E. californica, E. caespitosa and E. hypecoides at CalPhotosBerkeley.


More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification
October 20, 2010 - Need to identify multi branched plant, feathery appearance, approx 6' tall stalks, grows in clusters. Tiny whitish/pink flowers at top of stems. Very similar in appearance to milfoil, only these grow...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification for Florida
July 10, 2011 - I am looking for the name of a plant that has long stalks and wispy long leaves with large round purple flowers on the end.
view the full question and answer

Distinguishing non-native Wisteria from Austin
June 25, 2012 - How do I distinguish a native wisteria from a non-native wisteria?
view the full question and answer

Fragrant night blooming plant
June 09, 2009 - My Grandmother use to have a night fragrant night blooming plant that she referred to as "baby Jesus being born" when it bloomed. Are you familiar with anything of this nature?
view the full question and answer

More information about Trillium in New Jersey
June 23, 2011 - Hi, Nan. FYI. The Trillium seeds in question came from the State of Alabama. If you have an interest in seeing photos of this Trillium and two others in my garden, which are different and which I be...
view the full question and answer

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