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
7 ratings

Thursday - October 14, 2010

From: Nashville, TN
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identification of thorny tree with lemon-like fruit
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

What would be a small lemon like fruit that grows on a bush with large thorns? The fruit is about the size of a golf ball, kind of fuzzy yellow skin like a lemon and smells like a cross between an orange and a lemon. The flesh is like that of a lemon.

ANSWER:

This sounds like Poncirus trifoliata (hardy orange or trifoliate orange), an introduced species from China.  It is listed on the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health Invasive.org website and by TexasInvasives.org.  If this isn't the plant you have seen, please take photos and send them to us and we will do our best to identify it.  Visit Mr. Smarty Plants' Plant Identification page to read the instructions for submitting photos.

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification
July 05, 2009 - Large leaf plant over 5 feet tall red stems and purple almost black flat berries in large clumps. Any idea?
view the full question and answer

Poison ivy in Hilliard OH?
June 15, 2009 - I found a plant with five jagged leaves growing close to the ground in the trees of Ohio. Is this poison ivy or a similar plant?
view the full question and answer

Identification of ivy-like plant with large purplish leaves.
March 27, 2015 - Can you ID this ivy-like growing plant with a big purplish elephant ear type leaf and a big green stem pouch?
view the full question and answer

Sending a picture of an oak from Yorktown TX
December 02, 2011 - How I can I send a pic of my oak in Yorktown near Cuero?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on forbs
October 16, 2005 - What kind of plant is a forb? I see the term used frequently in reference to grasses (I think), but I can't figure out exactly what a forb is.
view the full question and answer

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