Dorstenia bahiensis- A plant you need to know?

Dorstenia bahiensis- A plant you need to know?

Dorstenia bahiensis is native to forested areas of eastern Brazil.  Its unusual flowers first caught my eye and it is noticeably different from any other plant I know. Is this a plant worthy of your garden? Read on to find out more.   I was first drawn to the unusual flowers of Dorstenia. The 1-2″ flowers look like an odd fungus held above the leaves. Varying in color from deep purple to a light lavender, the slightly cupped flower is hard to the touch although it looks as though it could easily be a slimy mass. With a nod to its fig relatives, the flowers look kind of like if you turned an edible fig inside out. Top Tropicals cites “At maturity, seeds shoot ballistically from the mature flower/fruit heads, and they germinate readily whenever the land on soil or other moist substrate.”  … Read Full Post
Clerodendrum for Florida

Clerodendrum for Florida

Browsing through the photos on my iphone, there seems to be a recurring theme: plants, pugs and Mike. And probably in that order. I couldn’t help but notice that lately I have quite a few photos of clerodendrum in the mix, both in flower and in seed and it seemed I need to pull all of my favorites into one place. You guessed it, this piece. There are so many great clerodendrum for Florida that I will probably miss a few here but I will include a few favorites Clerodendrum paniculatum, Pagoda Flower With large 12″ flowers in bright orange colors, this clerodendrum always noticed when in flower. Pagoda flower can get very tall after several years of warm winters and has reached upward of 8′ tall in central Florida.… Read Full Post
Simple Garden Fixes

Simple Garden Fixes

The 12 month growing season in Florida can be both a blessing and a curse at the same time. Especially for transplants from other parts of the country, the fast growth of most plants is shocking! A landscape with new plants can quickly become overgrown and out of control if plants are placed too close together. There comes a time in every yard and garden when some hard pruning must take place to get things under control. Now I know that I should have taken a ‘before’ photo of this overgrown corner of our yard, but when the mood hit me to clear it out there was absolutely no stopping the momentum. Within fifteen minutes the plants that were swallowing our red chairs had been cut back and removed, leaving in their absence an open area just begging for some attention.… Read Full Post
New Guinea Impatiens

New Guinea Impatiens

New Guinea impatiens are the hottest option for color in the garden and there is no shortage of new varieties hitting the market. I am going to ramble for a little bit on the reasons we need New Guinea impatiens (aka New Guineas) and then you can see some of these new and beautiful varieties available. Why New Guinea Impatiens? It wasn’t too long ago that impatiens were a gardener’s go-to plant for color in the shade. So what has changed? A disease called Impatiens Downy Mildew came into the picture. Downy mildew affects all hybrids and varieties of Impatiens walleriana (garden impatiens), also called busy Lizzie. The pathogen that causes downy mildew is a type of water mold and more closely related to algae than to fungi. … Read Full Post
Chartreuse Plants

Chartreuse Plants

There is something about chartreuse plants that makes them electric and at the same time a great companion for almost any color. Whether in sun or shade, chartreuse stands out. What is chartreuse? noun: char·treuse \shär-ˈtrüz, -ˈtrüs\ Definition of CHARTREUSE: a variable color averaging a brilliant yellow green Ooh, a brilliant yellow green. Sounds lovely, doesn’t it? This color is one that I am attracted to every time I see it. Especially in the shade, chartreuse plants just seem to glow. Look at how a chartreuse plant stands out compared to standard plants in the photo below. After seeing some friends at a nursery the other day and learning about the color palette they are developing for their garden I started to think about the colors that I would choose if I had a color palette.… Read Full Post
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