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

Friday - October 02, 2009

From: Ortonville, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identification of plant responsible for thorns in dogs' fur
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Do you know of a plant or bush that has very small, very thin triangle shaped thorn? My dogs have been coming in with these in their fur and I want to get rid of the plant/bush they are coming from.

ANSWER:

Mr. Smarty Plants suspects that what is stuck in your dogs' fur are some type of grass seed.  Thorns from plants, whether shrubs or herbaceous plants, don't usually break away from the branch or stem that they are on.  If the dogs are coming in with just the thorns in their fur and not stems or branches with the thorns attached, then the best bet is that these are seeds from a grass or another plant.  If you can take a photo of these thorns and send it to us (high resolution in good focus), we will try to identify the source of the thorns.  Please visit Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page to read instructions for submitting photos.
 

More Plant Identification Questions

Who was Salvia clevelandii named for?
May 12, 2009 - Where does the term "clevelandii (as in the Salvia I recently saw for the first time) originate?
view the full question and answer

Identity of a plant in SE Georgia
May 06, 2009 - Identity of a plant- This plant is growing wild in SE GA, but I have never seen it before until this year. The plant has a stolon "root" system it forms an upright stem and a cluster of flowers begi...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
July 07, 2008 - I live in NE PA and have two plants that are growing under our pine tree. One has 2 leaves and and looks a lot like lily of the valley and the other has 6-10 leaves with white berries on the end. I wa...
view the full question and answer

Plant Identification
April 25, 2009 - What is: square stalk perennial with bright yellow flowers at the top (mainly)? Starts growing first thing in spring, invades surrounding areas, puts out long serrated leaves along the 7-8 ft stalks....
view the full question and answer

Plant Identification
April 16, 2009 - I have a vine in my flowerbed that has three leaves and thorns and it looks like poison ivy. How can I tell if it is?
view the full question and answer

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