In The Garden: They all look alike

Discussion in 'Plants: Identification' started by i_am_jim, Aug 7, 2018.

  1. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    Which of the following is this plant?
     

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  2. Margot

    Margot Active Member

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    What about Protasparagus densiflorus 'Meyeri' - Foxtail Fern.
     
  3. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    You're supposed to be narrowing it, not broadening it! :-)
     
  4. wcutler

    wcutler Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    You could dig around in the soil. From Protasparagus densiflorus Plant Profile:
    Asparagus has rhizomes, and Protasparagus does not.​
    From the same source:
    Foxtail fern (P. densiflorus cv. 'Myersii') has stiffly upright stems to 2' long, with very dense, cylindrical plume-like foliage, giving the plant a fluffy, cloud-like appearance. The stems are like bottle brushes, 2-3" in diameter, and tapering gradually to the tips.​
    and
    Emerald fern or emerald feather (P. densiflorus cv. 'Sprengeri') has arching and drooping foliage 3-4' long, with needlelike stems in dense clusters. It has an open, spreading appearance, and heavily scented flowers.​
    I'm not seeing any drooping foliage. You'll have to determine whether there are rhizomes.
     
  5. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Contributor 10 Years

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    Protasparagus densiflorus is listed as a synonym of Asparagus densiflorus.
     
  6. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    It has flowers, so it isn't a fern.
     
  7. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    The common name for all these contains fern but they are not ferns.
     
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  8. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    I have never seen individual members standing or dense like this (I can't get the picture link to work.)

    My wife says the plant has red berries some times.

    Here are two wide views of the plant.
     

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  9. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    Absent other replies I will assume it is asparagus densiflorus 'sprengeri'
     
  10. wcutler

    wcutler Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I thought it looked like stiff and upright stems, as in P. densiflorus cv. 'Myersii', not arching and drooping like 'Sprengeri'.
    What about the "Asparagus has rhizomes, and Protasparagus does not."? That should be easy to find out.
     
  11. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Contributor 10 Years

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    But they are one and the same according to the botanical name.
     
  12. wcutler

    wcutler Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    OK. Asparagus densiflorus - Plant Finder (Missouri Botanical Garden) says about Sprenger's asparagus fern:
    This plant is also sometimes listed as Protasparagus densiflorus because plants in the genus Asparagus (e.g., the edible vegetable A. officinalis) have rhizomes but this plant does not. Species plants are not as widely grown in gardens as are certain popular cultivars such as ‘Myersii’ (foxtail fern) and Sprengeri group (emerald fern).​
    So I guess the floridata page was referring to the edible asparagus.

    The ones here look halfway between fox-tail-like and droopy. The ones on this Meyersii search
    Asparagus Meyeri - Bing images
    look more uniformly foxtail-y. I think I'm coming to agree with i_am_jim on Sprengeri group.
     
  13. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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  14. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    I've become confused by Junglekeepers quote that says
    'Protasparagus densiflorus is a synonym of Asparagus densiflorus.'
     
  15. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Contributor 10 Years

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    It means Asparagus densiflorus is the plant's current name but it was at one time known as Protasparagus densiflorus.

    I think your plant looks like Asparagus densiflorus 'Sprengeri'.
     
  16. i_am_jim

    i_am_jim Member

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    I think there is general agreement on Asparagus Fern -- asparagus densiflorus 'sprengeri'
     

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