Plant LIbrary

Plant of the Month – December 2016

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Like many Floridians, the Orange Marmalade Crossandra loves heat, humidity, and cannot tolerate a cold winter. A relative newcomer to the plant community, the Orange Marmalade is a new variety of Crmssandra. This plant boasts glossy leaves and showy orange blooms that last year-round while eliminating the exploding seed pods of past varieties. Grown best in partial sun or partial shade, the Crossandra makes an excellent filler plant or a statement in a container. The plants in the photos were used in planter boxes and have been producing blooms since the summer. Protect Orange Marmalade Crossandra from hard frost and freeze.  Cuddle up with your plants and stay warm out there!

SOURCES:

http://gardeningsolutions.ifas.ufl.edu/plants/ornamentals/crossandra.html

http://www.monrovia.com/plant-catalog/plants/3752/orange-marmalade-firecracker-flower/

http://floridafriendlyplants.com/Plant_Detail.asp?PlantID=19

Plant of the Month – November 2016

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Brr! It finally feels like fall and one of my favorite plants this time of year is in full bloom all around town.  Muhly grass is a Florida native plant that can be found in Florida’s pine flatwoods and coastal uplands. It is quite popular in residential, commercial and roadway planting and it is easy to see why.  Planted in drifts or groups, this ornamental grass produces a showy pink inflorescence in the fall and turns the landscape into a soft pink cloud.  It is particularly beautiful when backlit by the sun.  Muhly grass is easy to care for, drought tolerant and moderately salt tolerant.  Consider adding this native grass to your landscape to enjoy year after year.

 

 

SOURCES:

http://gardeningsolutions.ifas.ufl.edu/plants/ornamentals/muhly-grass.html

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fp415

http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/foliage/muhly-grass/growing-muhly-grass.htm

muhly-grass_november-2016

Plant of the Month – October 2016

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Trick or Treat? It’s a spooky Monstera deliciosa knocking on your door. This tropical plant has shiny large leaves characterized by deep splits and holes, giving it the common name Swiss cheese plant. Monstera can be grown as a bushy tropical shrub in shady areas, or indoors as a houseplant. It can also grow into a monster-sized vine on a palm tree or any structure that it can climb. The tentacle-like aerial roots grow downward and support the plant. Although most plants are grown for their attractive foliage, the Monstera does have a flower that develops into a fruit over the course of a year. And talk about trick or treat indeed – all parts of this creepy crawler are poisonous except the ripe fruit!

Keep an eye out for the ghostly green and white variegated version as well.

SOURCES:

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/hs311                                                                        http://floridata.com/Plants/Araceae/Monstera+deliciosa/794

monstera

Plant of the Month – July 2016

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

Erin Porter, Landscape Architect PLA

It’s HOT! In this July heat, there is no place I would rather be than on the beach and the Dune Sunflower, Helianthus debilis, would agree.

This fast-growing groundcover is a Florida Native and is well suited to sandy, salty and hot conditions.  The Dune Sunflower (also known as the Beach Sunflower) is a creeping groundcover with plentiful and showy flowers providing year round interest to the landscape.

It can be used to stabilize beach dunes and is planted in residential or commercial landscapes. Happy plants will bloom for several years. As the plant ages, they can have woody stems, so be sure to remove the dying stems to keep the plant looking its best.

Dune Sunflower

Plant of the Month – June 2016

PorterE

Erin Porter, PLA

This month we are bringing the Hidden Ginger into the spotlight.  The curcuma is a relative of the variegated shell ginger plant with similar elliptical leaves. The light green leaves have dark veins and a pink or red midvein.  While the leaves themselves are very beautiful, the true gem is the flower.  The soft pink torch-like spike flowers bloom in the late spring or early summer. As summer progresses, the leaves emerge concealing the flowers.

This is a perennial plant and is dormant in the winter.  If planted in hardiness zone nine (9) and south, our recommendation is to leave the plant in the ground and wait for it to return in the spring. However, if planted zone eight (8) or farther north, consider bringing the plant indoors for the winter.  Hidden Ginger can be difficult to find, if you see one at your local nursery, take a chance and brighten up a shady spot in your yard.

 Hidden Ginger

Plant of the Month – March 2016

Erin Porter

Erin Porter

Many Floridians are familiar with the common shrub variety Schefflera arboricola because it is often used in most landscapes. However, the Schefflera arboricola ‘Dazzle’ is a distinct cultivar characterized by unique, heavily variegated foliage with a beautiful creamy pale yellow to white color mixed with green. Dazzle is often grown in columns or grown with braided trunks. The palmate leaves are slightly larger than the traditional parent plant. The Dazzle will bring a soft sophistication to your garden space if used against a wall where height is desired or it may stand alone as an accent. Keep an eye out for the Schefflera arboricola ‘Dazzle’ in many of our upcoming projects!

SOURCES:
http://www.google.com/patents/USPP14431
http://www.onlineplantguide.com/Plant-Details/2471/
http://okeechobee.ifas.ufl.edu/News%20columns/Arboricola.cultivars.htm

Dazzle Dwarf Schefflera

Plant of the Month – January 2016

Erin Porter

Erin Porter

I’ll guarantee that after bringing this beautiful plant of the month to your attention you’ll see it everywhere. The starburst clerodendrum is in full bloom now and filling forgotten spaces with showy pink and white flowers. Most of the year the dark green and purple leaves of this medium shrub or small tree fade to the back providing a leafy backdrop, but in the winter months it becomes a reliable showstopper.

For more information check out the sources below. The IFAS link is especially informative.

SOURCES:                                http://lee.ifas.ufl.edu/Hort/GardenPubsAZ/Starburst_Clerodendrum.pdf

http://www.south-florida-plant-guide.com/clerodendrum-quadriloculare.html

http://www.floridasnature.com/landscape/Clerodendrum%20quadriloculare.htm

Triptic Template-04

Plant of the Month – December 2015

Erin Porter

Erin Porter

There are several hundred Croton cultivars, each valued in different ways for their unique color and foliage.  This month’s plant of the month is an older variety of croton known as Augustifolium, Codiaeum variegatum ‘Augustifolium’. While crotons come in many leaf shapes and colors, the Augustifolium is a showstopper with long elliptical leaves that have bright yellow and green coloring.  Use this croton as a stand-alone plant or paired with contrasting colors to bring a bright spot to any yard.

SOURCES:

Plant of the Month – July 2015

Erin Porter

Erin Porter

 

July’s plant of the month is the Philodendon ‘Burle Marx’.

Named for the famous Brazilian landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx, this tropical favorite adds a lush feel to any South Florida landscape. The shiny, clumping groundcover is one of my favorites and can even be used as an indoor houseplant.

 

 

 

SOURCES:

http://miami-dade.ifas.ufl.edu/old/programs/fyn/publications/drought-tolerant-plants/dtpl-vines.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roberto_Burle_Marx

http://www.alllandscapedata.com

Plant of the Month – May 2015

Daniel Sugg

Daniel Sugg

The May Plant of the Month is the Microsorum musifolium, the Crocodile Fern.  The Crocodile Fern gets its name from the unique pattern/texture on the leaves that resembles crocodile or alligator skin.  It is a very cool fern that works well as a mass or as a stand-alone accent plant.  It also looks awesome and performs well in a hanging basket.

The leaves are long and bright green which adds a nice color and texture to a shady location.  The Crocodile Fern is a great option for a tropical shade garden.

 

 

 

SOURCES:

http://www.excelsagardens.com/?p=2913

http://www.exoticrainforest.com/Microsorium%20musifolium%20pc.html

http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempercode=e955

 

Crocodile Fern