Okra is a cultigen (a plant that has been altered by humans through a process of selective breeding). The exact origin of okra is unknown, but it is thought to have come from Africa, where it has been grown as a crop for centuries. Evidence suggests it was grown in Egypt as long ago as 2,000 BC. Today it is widely cultivated for its edible green fruits, which are harvested when immature (after 3-5 days of development), and are infamous for their slimy mucilage.
Agave plants need a spot in full sun to partial shade. The hotter the climate, the more shade they can handle.
Established plants need watering once every couple of weeks if at all. Deeply water, container grown Agave plants when the top inch or two of the soil dries completely.
Smooth, blue-green leaves with yellow-edged, red margins form a single, symmetrical rosette. Each leaf tip bears a short red spine. A comely choice for sunny, low water gardens in warm coastal or humid Mediterranean-like climates. Handsome in dry desert gardens as well, provided some shade and supplemental water. Evergreen.
The foliage is pale green when young and gray-green at maturity. Flowers are cream colored, hemispheric pom-poms. Seeds germinate well without scarification.
The tree is used as a folk remedy for many ailments. Another common use is as an avenue tree, and sometimes it is used to shade coffee and tea. Saponins and tannins in the bark can be used for making soap and in tanning, respectively. Bee keepers like the species for the light-colored honey its nectar provides, and the tree hosts the lac insect.
Asparagus setaceus, commonly known as common asparagus fern, lace fern, climbing asparagus, or ferny asparagus, is a climbing plant in the genus Asparagus. Despite its common name, the plant is not a true fern, but has leaves that resemble one
The fern may dry out to the point it appears dead; however, outdoor springtime temperatures generally revive them. Keep the plant well watered in all situations and repot every few years. Care ofasparagus ferns indoors involves misting the arching stems to provide humidity to the plant.
The importance of A. halimus in the functioning of ecosystems is reflected in its promotion of soil biota, while it also acts as a food plant for mammals and arthropods. Its deep root system decreases soil erosion in arid zones, due to stabilisation of the soil. The protein-rich shoot material of A. halimus makes it an important fodder species for livestock, particularly sheep and goats. However, its low energy value means that it should be supplemented with carbohydrate-rich material, such as cereal straw. Potential new uses of this versatile plant species include the phytoremediation of soils contaminated by trace elements and the exploitation of its biomass as a source of renewable energy. Such applications, together with its continued use in low-intensity farming systems, should ensure that A. halimus remains a vital plant species in
As mentioned, banana plants grow from a corm or rhizome and produce a pseudostem made up of furled leaves and the start of the banana flower.
As the plant grows and matures, the leaves emerge and the flower blossoms transform into a berry like fruit that start out curling up toward light.
Collectively, all the fruit is called a “bunch”. As the bananas mature they begin growing downward separating into smaller groups called “hands”. Each individual banana within the hand is referred to as a “finger”.
It takes approximately nine months for banana plants to mature, grow leaves, flower and produce fruit. Once completed the parent plant dies back and baby plants (a.k.a. suckers or pups) take its place.
Grow the banyan tree in an area that is large enough to accommodate its eventual size – up to 100 feet in height with a spread that may take up several acres. As a houseplant, place the banyan tree in an area with partial shade or in bright light. Choose one or the other and then don’t move it or it may end up dropping its leaves.
Water the mature outdoor banyan tree only during prolonged periods of drought. Indoors, let the soil dry out and then place the plant under the faucet, turn it on to a steady drip, and saturate the soil. Another way to ensure that the soil is evenly saturated is to place the pot in a shallow pan of water. Add more water to the pan as the soil absorbs it, until the top of the soil is wet.
Sharp-tipped leaves are the origin for the “prickly” name for this plant, and it definitely fits. Up to 2″ in length, these pointy leaves require the use of gloves to prune, but the flower stalks more than make up for the trouble.
Those flowers are actually clusters of 7-36 small flowers with extremely long stamens. The stamens are bright scarlet in color with yellowish-green tips, giving them a distinctly dual-colored look.
Visually stunning to look at, this plant can grow from five to thirty feet in height.
Water a newly planted bougainvillea frequently to keep the soil moist. Once the plant is established, it blooms best if the soil is a little on the dry side. Water the plant until liquid drips through the drainage hole, then don’t water again until the potting mixture feels slightly dry. However, don’t allow the soil to become completely dry because a water-stressed plant won’t bloom. Water the plant immediately if it looks wilted.
When it comes to watering, Bougainvillea is pretty drought tolerant once established. It prefers a good, deep watering every 3-4 weeks rather than frequent shallow waterings. When establishing, be sure to give yours regular water. It’s subject to a few types of root rots so don’t over water. The soil should be well drained which will help prevent rot.
- Good for making bonsai
- Good for Topiary
- Good for screening
- Good for Hedges and Borders
- Can grow on trellis or chain link fencing
- Attracts butterflies
- Animals will not eat
- Thorny or Spiny
- Suitable for road median planting
- Hanging or weeping growth habit
- Salt or salinity tolerant
- Good on seaside
Buddha’s Belly Bamboo likes sunlight. Full sunlight helps the plant grow faster.
Part shading is essential for maintaining proper health of the plant.
The Buddha’s Belly plant is not very fond of water. It never needs much water to thrive and grow.
Watering the plant once a week can be enough when growing indoors.
It is essential to let the soil get completely dry after one watering session, before watering the plant the next time.
The plant should never be allowed to sit in water. That can cause the untimely death of the plant.
This widely used genus is prized for its evergreen foliage and its ability to withstand heavy pruning. The yellow-green flowers are insignificant. Buxus has been used in hedging, topiaries, and parterres for centuries.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsOpposite, glossy rounded to lance-shaped leathery leaves. Variegated forms exist.
CareGrow in any soil, preferably in part shade. Tolerates full sun if the soil is moist. Prune in late spring and summer; supply fertilizer after any heavy pruning to aid in regeneration.
PropagationRoot semi-ripe cutttings in summer. Graft in winter.
This classic cactus has large, flat, dusty green paddles with lots of sharp thorns. The thorns are evenly distributed across the pads and also form an areola at the tip of each pad.
In addition to stationary thorns, the prickly pear also produces loose thorns called “glochids”. These thorns are barbed and can fasten onto skin and clothing.
With all of these thorns, it’s a bit hard to understand why the Opuntia is such a popular ornamental cactus until you see the blossoms, which grow from the areola of thorns.