(Monkshood, Sparks Monkshood)
A hybrid tuberous monkshood, 'Sparks Variety' is notable for its tall, thin stems bearing deeply lobed leaves and a terminal branched cluster of deep-violet flowers. Draped with a curious petal-like bract that resembles a hood, the eye-catching flowers give the plant its common name.
This perennial needs well-drained soil with uninterrupted moisture. It grows and flowers best in cool soil and partial sun but will tolerate full sun. The stems may need staking. Note that all parts of the plant...
(Striped Sweet Flag, Sweet Flag)
Striped sweet flag is an herbaceous perennial that is native throughout much of the Northern Hemisphere. It has inconspicuous flowers and is grown primarily for its tall, upright, broad, iris-like foliage. Acorus calmus 'Variegatus' has very showy white bordered leaves. These plants spread by rhizomes (underground stems) and grow best in moist boggy areas with full to partial sun. Semi-aquatic in nature, sweet flag works well in naturalistic plantings along waterways or in gardens with moist,...
Keith Weller, USDA/ARS
(Chinese Gooseberry, Fuzzy Kiwi, Kiwi)
Kiwi are vigorous, deciduous, woody vines that are native to China. By fall, they develop brown, fuzzy, edible, egg-shaped fruits. These taste like tangy green grapes and have a green, juicy interior with a ring of small edible black seeds. Fruits are preceded by fragrant ivory to yellow flowers, and long, medium green, heart-shaped leaves cover plants throughout the growing season. Kiwi are dioecious, which means that each gender is found on separate plants, so gardeners need two plants, a male...
(Fuzzy Kiwi, Vincent Kiwi)
This is a large-fruited selection of a vigorous, deciduous, woody vine native to China. By fall, ‘Vincent’ develops brown, fuzzy, edible, egg-shaped fruits. These taste like tangy green grapes and have a green, juicy interior with a ring of small edible black seeds. The fruits are preceded by fragrant ivory to yellow flowers in spring. The leaves are heart-shaped and cover the twining stems through the growing season. The parent species is dioecious, which means that each gender is found on separate...
Gerald L. Klingaman
(Common Maidenhair Fern, Southern Maidenhair Fer)
Delicate and shade-loving, southern maidenhair fern is a beautiful plant native to tropical and temperate regions throughout the world. This species is evergreen in tropical and subtropical areas and deciduous in temperate regions.
It's most admired for its small, fine fronds comprised of dainty, fan-shaped leaflets of light green that move in the slightest breeze. These are supported by glossy black stems that arise from short creeping rhizomes.
Southern maidenhair fern grows best in moist,...
(Autumn Adonis, Pheasant's Eye)
Small, scarlet buttercups are the glory of the annual pheasant's eye. A wildflower of field and meadow, natural populations exist on calcareous soils across much of Europe, the Mediterranean, North Africa and western Asia. Each bloom has very dark anthers giving the appearance of a bird's or pheasant's eye. Flowering occurs from late spring to midsummer.
Seeds germinate in late winter or spring, and plants have very finely dissected ferny foliage that's pale or bright green. Small red flowers...
Carol Cloud Bailey
(Aechmea , Del Mar Aechmea, Del Mar Bromeliad)
Bromeliad ‘Del Mar’ is a tender tropical perennial grown primarily for its spectacular long-lasting blooms and compact habit. Resulting from a cross between Aechmea fendleri and A. dichlamydea var. trinitensis, it has a rosette of leathery, broadly lance-shaped, medium green leaves with small sharp spines on their edges. The arching leaves form a 30-cm (12-inch) tall, 60-cm (2-foot) wide clump, with a central tube-shaped "cup." A spike of showy flowers with purple...
Gerald L. Klingaman
(Aechmea , Foster's Freckles Aechmea, Foster's Freckles Bromeliad)
Resulting from a cross of the bromeliads Aechmea fendleri and A. orlandiana, 'Foster's Freckles' is a tender tropical perennial grown primarily for its lush speckled foliage. It forms a tall rosette of leathery, upright, broadly lance-shaped leaves with burgundy-brown spots. The light green leaves are edged with small sharp spines. The rosette may send forth a tall thick flower stem topped by a large spike-like cluster of small white blooms with showy scarlet bracts. The...
(Aechmea, Oregon Aechmea, Oregon Bromeliad)
An excellent plant for the tropical landscape, the hybrid bromeliad ‘Oregon’ is a tender evergreen perennial grown primarily for its large colorful leaves and brightly hued bloom. The leathery, broadly lance-shaped, spine-edged leaves are of tropical hues: rose, yellow and mango-orange. The upright, gently arching leaves are arranged in a rosette with a cupped center. A tall, branched, red-stemmed spike with scarlet, bead-like flowers grows from the rosette's center. Showy yellow fruits follow the...