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?

Share

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

Saturday - June 21, 2008

From: N LITTLE ROCK, AR
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identification of cattail look-alike, except red
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I would like help identify the wildflowers growing beside the highways in my area so I can plant some at my house. We live in Sherwood Arkansas which is just north of Little Rock.The Highway where we see them is 67/167. They bloom in the spring and look sort of like cattails except they are a deep red. Thanks in advance for any help identify these flowers.

ANSWER:

Here are three likely suspects with red flowers that occur in Arkansas in the spring and look a bit like a red cattails:

Ipomopsis rubra (standing-cypress) blooms May, Jun, July

Penstemon murrayanus (scarlet beardtongue) blooms April, May, June

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower) blooms May through October

If none of these is the plant you have seen but you have photo of it, you can send us the photo for identification. Visit the Ask Mr. Smarty Plants page and see instructions for submitting photos under "Plant Identification".


Ipomopsis rubra

Ipomopsis rubra

Penstemon murrayanus

Penstemon murrayanus

Lobelia cardinalis

Lobelia cardinalis

 

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant Identification
October 30, 2008 - Hi. I took a picture of a plant/wildflower at Reimer's Ranch near Dripping SPrings and have been unable to identify it. I searched through the plant database but am having difficulty. Can I send y...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
May 24, 2009 - It is a small, thin vine growing in the grass in the shadier parts of the lawn. Every 3-4 inches it has two thin stems about three inches long sprouting from almost exactly the same place on the vine...
view the full question and answer

Plant ID at the Wildflower Center from Austin
June 18, 2012 - I was at the Wildflower Center today and loved the green plants with delicate white flowers that were in both clay pots in front of the auditorium. Please let me know the name of the plants.
view the full question and answer

Plant identification, green and tube-like
September 18, 2008 - LOOKING FOR NAME OF A GREEN TUBE-LIKE PLANT (SHAPED LIKE A CALLA LILY). THE VEINS ARE VISIBLE. MAYBE IN CLUSTER
view the full question and answer

Identification of plant with purple leaves and yellow flowers
April 21, 2008 - I'd like to know the name of a plant that has purplish leaves and sends roots out underground to make new plants. It can be invasive. It has yellow flowers. Leaves are oval in shape. Almost looks lik...
view the full question and answer

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