Plant ID Help?

althea
I know what this is! It’s an althea or rose of sharon! Isn’t the color pretty?

A friend asked me to help identify two plants. I must admit that I have failed, which is irritating, since one of them I see all the time, but have no clue for ID. So, I am going to reach out to you, blog readers, for some help.

The first plant is a type of bunch grass. It’s in my friend’s yard in Spicewood, Texas, or thereabouts. The question is whether it’s a good plant, a native one that we want to encourage, or one that needs to go away, because it’s not native or useful in some other way. Here you go:

plant2
Yep, it makes clumps. And I don’t have a larger image.

Any of you Master Naturalists or botanists have an idea?

UPDATE: Stephanie Kendall (no relation) posited that it could be Texas bear grass. I’ll go with that until there’s another idea. It’s not growing in its native habitat, but it is on a limestone soil. It looks like it was planted there on purpose as a ground cover, which is one of the uses of bear grass.

The other one I see all the time on 360 in Austin, and anywhere that isn’t overly manicured. I have a close-up of the leaves, which I took. I tried to ID it with the PlantSnap application, but first it said it was a bromeliad, then a rose:

plant1b
This resembles a lot of things. But SnapPlant said it was a rose flower. That one I know is wrong.

Here’s the photo I got from my friend. Austin residents should find it familiar. But what is it? It’s not the thing with the pretty orchid-like flowers, but it does look like that one (which I also don’t remember the name of and haven’t looked up):

plant1
Okay, so what is it?

I hate to admit to being so clueless, but I am. I don’t even have good enough images to see if I can get help on iNaturalist, but I guess that will be next.

Help a gal out. Any clues?

UPDATE: Stephanie Kendall also identified this one. And I am sure she’s right that this plant is false willow Baccharis neglecta. I love the name on that one! It’s because it tends to crop up on disturbed or neglected areas. I’ve been seeing this one for decades and wondered what it was.

Author: Sue Ann (Suna) Kendall

The person behind The Hermits' Rest blog and many others. I'm a certified Texas Master Naturalist and love the nature of Milam County. I manage technical writers in Austin, help with Hearts Homes and Hands, a personal assistance service, in Cameron, and serve on three nonprofit boards. You may know me from La Leche League, knitting, iNaturalist, or Facebook. I'm interested in ALL of you!

One thought on “Plant ID Help?”

  1. Sorry I confused everyone by sharing the pretty photo when I wanted help with the plain old plants. But I got people to look at the blog, anyway.

    Like

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