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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

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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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!

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Friday - June 15, 2012

From: Annapolis, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Identification, Shrubs
Title: Shrub with red two-globed berries
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am looking for the name of a red berry with 2 globes attached to each other on a plant with small soft oval shaped leaves.I live in Maryland and they are maturing now. These bushes are in the park I walk in that used to be a fruit farm.

ANSWER:

If it is a plant native to North America, it is likely to be in our Native Plant Database.   I did a COMBINAION SEARCH in the database (and you can do it, too) choosing "Maryland" from the Select State or Province and "Shrub" from Habit (general appearance).   This will give you a list of more than 160 native shrubs found in Maryland.  Most of the species pages include photos.   For those that don't, you can scroll down the species page to near the bottom to find ADDITIONAL RESOURCES and click on the species name under Google.  You can then find images of the shrub on the internet.  Here are several from that list that look similar to your description.

Euonymus atropurpureus (Burningbush)

Euonymus americanus (American strawberry-bush)

Lonicera canadensis (American fly honeysuckle).  Here are photos and more information.

Physocarpus opulifolius (Atlantic ninebark)

If none of these is the plant you have seen, it is very likely that it is a non-native cultivar that would not appear in our Native Plant Database.  If you have (or can take) a photo of the plant, you can find on our Plant Identification page links to several plant identification forums that will accept photos of plants for identification.

 

From the Image Gallery


Burningbush
Euonymus atropurpureus

Burningbush
Euonymus atropurpureus

American strawberry bush
Euonymus americanus

American strawberry bush
Euonymus americanus

Common ninebark
Physocarpus opulifolius

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