Plants of the Week: October 28

The softest breeze sets Gaura lindheimeri ‘Whirling Butterflies’ in motion. While the tap-rooted perennial tolerates heat, humidity and poor soils, full sun and good drainage are essential. ‘Whirling Butterflies’ is more compact than the species. Wiry, arching stems tinged red-pink bear a profusion of pink flower buds. Flowers open pure white. The white flowers combined with reddish stems blend to create a misty pink effect in the garden.  Gaura has a long bloom time, typically beginning in May and continuing well into September and October.  An oldie but a goodie. Photo credit: J. Coceano

Garden Location: Dean Bond Rose Garden

 

Female Chionanthus retusus have had a particularly profuse crop of fruit this season. Literature notes that the Chinese fringe tree often alternates in flowering abundance from year to year. Snow white flowers in spring give way to dark blue drupes. Two distinct forms are commonly seen in the trade. One form bears a distinct trunk with dull green leaves. The other form is shrub-like in habit sporting lustrous dark green leaves.  Photo credit: J. Coceano

Garden Locations: Several on campus, this particular image captured near Winter Garden along Martin Biology building

Illicium mexicanum ‘Aztec Fire’, also known as the Mexican anise tree, was discovered on an expedition to northeastern Mexico. Illicium  mexicanum is similar to our native I. floridanum with the principal difference being larger flowers borne on longer peduncles. ‘Aztec Fire’ is a relatively new addition to the Scott Arboretum. Several species and cultivars of Illicium are planted in close proximity beside the Wister Center to afford comparison. Photo credit: J. Coceano

Garden location: foundation planting along the Wister Center

Categorized as Plant of the Week

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