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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.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - November 07, 2011

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Plant Identification
Title: Identification of yellow blooming plants near Temple, Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

This question may be a challenge. We noticed fields of yellow blooming plants in the fields east of Temple. They appear to be about 4 inches tall. (we were on a bus and could not stop to look closer). Someone we asked said they are a weed and begin with the letter "R". Any ideas? Thanks!

ANSWER:

This sounds like Amphiachyris dracunculoides (Prairie broomweed).  Their maximum height is usually about 8 to 15 inches but during our extended drought they would tend to be on the short side and, seen from a bus going down the road, they might appear shorter than they actually are.  Their tendency is to fill a field with yellow blossoms when they bloom in the fall, especially in overgrazed fields.  Here are more photos and information form Kansas Wildflowers.  There are other small yellow flowers [e.g., Tetraneuris scaposa var. scaposa (Four-nerve daisy)] that bloom in October, but not usually in such profusion as to fill the fields with yellow flowers.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Prairie broomweed
Amphiachyris dracunculoides

Prairie broomweed
Amphiachyris dracunculoides



Four-nerve daisy
Tetraneuris scaposa var. scaposa

Four-nerve daisy
Tetraneuris scaposa var. scaposa

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