Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

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 - May 14, 2005

From: Chelsea, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Texas native wildflowers viable in Michigan
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Can you tell me what wildflowers native to Texas would also thrive in Michigan?? I'd like to surprise a "transplant".

ANSWER:

Well, poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans) is native to both Michigan and Texas, but that's probably not the sort of plant you had in mind! You can do a search on the Native Plants Database using "Distribution" as your search criteria. If you input "Michigan", you will get a list of >2300 plants that are native to Michigan. For each of these plants the distribution for all states is listed so that you can pick out which ones are native to both Michigan and Texas. That's a lot of plants to sort through so I assume another criteria you have is that the plant is commercially available. I do have a few suggestions (not poison ivy) that would probably remind your friend of Texas and also be commercially available.

There are a couple of shrubs/small trees that are native to both Texas and Michigan that would say "Texas" to your friend. One is the Redbud (Cercis canadensis) which produces beautiful dark pink blooms in late February (In Texas). The other is Smooth sumac (Rhus glabra) which produces red berries and colorful leaves in the fall.

For herbaceous perennials you might consider:
1) Black-eyed Susan ()Rudbeckia hirta),
2) Red columbine (Aquilegia canadensis), and
3) Winecup (Callirhoe involucrata).

For a listing of Nurseries and Seed Companies that specialize in native plants, visit the National Suppliers Directory. For instance, if you search for "Seed Companies" in Michigan, you will find that Wildtype Design in Mason, Michigan has seeds for several of the plants listed above.
 

More Wildflowers Questions

Project involving wildflower seeds for Earth Day
March 01, 2009 - Hello, I am trying to find a relatively quick and easy project involving wildflower seeds for an Earth Day Celebration. We have roughly 1,000 kids come through. In the past I have done wildflower se...
view the full question and answer

Propagation of Castilleja latifolia in Fort Bragg CA
October 08, 2009 - What is the propagation method for Castilleja latifolia ssp. mendocinensis? Do I need to grow Castilleja latifolia ssp. mendocinensis seed with native associate plants in the propagation greenhouse be...
view the full question and answer

General Wildflower Reference
March 07, 2008 - Can you recommend a good general reference book on wildflowers that is not limited by being either regional or a field guide? (I already have Wildflowers Across America.) I am looking for a work whi...
view the full question and answer

Is purple coneflower native to Colorado?
July 20, 2009 - I have seen the purple cone flower growing wild in Gunnison National Forest in Colorado. Is it a native to that state or has it been brought in?
view the full question and answer

Will wildflowers planted in late December bloom this year?
January 24, 2009 - I have a home near Canyon Lake and seeded wildflowers on the property in late December. I have since read that the ideal time to seed them is before December 1st. Do they have a chance to bloom this...
view the full question and answer

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