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
5 ratings

Sunday - July 10, 2011

From: Ocoee, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant identification for Florida
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

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.

ANSWER:

From the description you provided I did three COMBINATION SEARCH-es in our Native Plant Database. I chose 'Florida' from Select State or Province, 'Herb' under Habit (general appearance) and then under Bloom Characteristics-Color:  'Pink', 'Blue', 'Purple' and 'Violet' for the first search.  For the other two searches I substituted either 'Subshrub' or 'Shrub' for 'Herb' under Habit (general appearance).  You can do the same searches yourself, but I could not find a native Florida plant that fits your description.   If your plant is a plant native to Florida, it should have appeared in our database.  I also searched in several Florida and southeastern US wildflower field guides and databases (e.g., Southeastern Flora and Gallery of Florida Wildflowers) and wasn't successful in finding a match.  A little more information about the plant would have been helpful—for instance, its overall size, the setting where you saw it, if the stems are woody, how large the flowers are, how many petals each flower has, etc.).  I suspect it is an introduced ornamental plant and not native to North America.  If so, it is out of our area of expertise.   Your best bet for learning its identity is to submit a photo, if you have one, to one of the plant identification forums.  You can find links to several forums on our Plant Identification page.

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification
August 28, 2010 - I have a very distinctive vine accompanying morning glory in invading my beds - it is Prickly! (on the vine, underside of leaves, leaf stems). The leaf is not arrowhead, but a triangle; I've not seen...
view the full question and answer

Backward blooming Jack-in-the-pulpit
April 18, 2008 - why does my jack in the pulpit plant bloom backwards
view the full question and answer

Native flowers versus non-natives
June 30, 2014 - Native flowers versus non-natives. What guidelines do use for identification. I come across flowers in different habitats and can't identify them as natives. Also, how do you attach a image to a ...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
September 20, 2014 - I was recently visiting Texas and kept seeing a particular plant in drainage bottoms and wetland areas (note these areas at the time of my visit were very dry). I was hoping you might be able to help...
view the full question and answer

What's invading my bermuda grass?
June 11, 2013 - Our grass is being totally overrun by this weed.(I don't know what the name is identify it by the description. It is in Bermuda grass and the only way to describe the weed is to say it looks like big...
view the full question and answer

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