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

Thursday - September 01, 2011

From: Artesia, NM
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Plant identification
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have a single stalked plant that has leaves with 5 lobes. Each lobe is also lobed. The leaves are dark green, staggered on the stalk opposite each other. Do you have any ideas what this is?

ANSWER:

You haven't given me a lot to go on here.  It would be nice to know the size of the leaves, the size of the plant and whether its stalk is woody or not.  Does it have flowers?   Did you buy it or did it just sprout up in your flowerbed or did you find it in the woods/in a ditch/in the park?  That would help me figure out it what it might be.  Nevertheless, I will give you a couple of possibilities that somewhat match your description.  Neither of these is a plant native to North America—our specialty—and I haven't thought of any native plants that fit your description.

Your best bet is to photograph the plant and then go to our Plant Identification page to find links to several plant identification forums that accept photos for identification.  Be sure to read the "Important Notes" on that page with instructions for submitting photos.   Also, be certain that your photos are in good focus.

 

More Plant Identification Questions

Plant identification
July 21, 2012 - Can't i.d a small aroid, arisaema(?) sp.; 5" tall. tuber 12" tall by 1" beginning 8" beneath the soil level. flowers are black spathes with white spots. leaves are alternate. common plant but d...
view the full question and answer

Origin of cultivar of Sophora secundiflora
April 01, 2012 - Howdy, Mr. Smarty Plants! I am hoping you can shed some light on the origin of my silver-leaved TX Mountain Laurel, "Silver Peso". Some nurseries refer to it as a genetic variation of Sophora secu...
view the full question and answer

ID for Caribbean mystery plants.
January 13, 2016 - I AM TRYING TO FIND THE COMMON NAME FOR TWO FLOWERS I TOOK PICTURES OF ON A CARIBBEAN CRUISE. I TOOK ONE IN HONDURAS AND ONE IN GRAND CAYMAN. DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHERE I CAN GO TO TO GET HELP IN ID...
view the full question and answer

Identity of cinnamon-scented bush from Pennsylvania
May 23, 2015 - I had a "bush" in PA that the woman who sold it to me called a cinnamon bush. It had long branches with large (approx 5" long and 3" wide) dark green leaves attached evenly along each side of the...
view the full question and answer

Plant identification
September 29, 2008 - My parents have a plant growing that we can not identify. Fast growing to 6 ft in 6 weeks. theleaves look like a fern with little sweet pea looking yellow blooms. The plants leaves fold up at dusk tig...
view the full question and answer

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