(Black Beauty Caricature Plant, Black Beauty Jamaican Croton, Caricature Plant)
A lush, dark-foliaged tropical shrub, Black Beauty caricature plant leaves are blackened dark green with reddish undersides. A tender tropical evergreen shrub, it is believed having its origin in New Guinea, but is naturalized throughout Southeast Asia and parts of Oceania.
The satin-glossed leaves are thin and charcoal dark green, or simply a drab black. Undersides of leaves can show off a salmon-red color, especially in sunlight. In late spring to summer each branch tip bears a flowerspike...
Grevillea comprises some 250 species of evergreen shrubs and trees, primarily from Australia. A few are native to New Caledonia or other islands to Australia's north.
Grevillea typically have deeply toothed or lobed leaves, giving their foliage a feathery appearance. Their colorful flowers are usually borne in spidery or toothbrush-like clusters. Nectar-seeking insects and birds visit and pollinate the flowers. Individual flowers are tubular with four long petal-like sepals...
Forest & Kim Starr
Silkoak tree is native to the subtropical rainforest regions of eastern Australia. It produces airy, green, fern-like leaves with silvery undersides and masses of golden flowers that smother the tree in mid- to late spring. The tree partially defoliates as the curled flowers open up in obvious, showy clusters. Because of its beauty, the wood of this tree is harvested and used in the furniture-making industry.
In the right conditions silkoak tree is a fast grower and excels in full sun and average,...
(Climbing Raisinbush, Yellow Starflower)
Rarely grown as an ornamental but certainly worthwhile, climbing raisinbush's pretty yellow star-like flowers in summer and autumn are followed by tasty small fruits that are amber to reddish tan. A robust climbing, multi-stemmed large shrub, it is native to northeastern South Africa and southern Mozambique. The broadleaf evergreen usually is found growing near rivers and streams.
Oldest stems often become four-sided, the plant overall attaining a thicket-like, spreading tangle of weeping to...
(African Starbush, Lavender Starflower)
Lavender starflower is a stately broadleaf evergreen with an irregularly tiered, upright habit that displays starry mauve or lavender flowers spring through fall. It is a native of southern Africa with a tolerance for wind, seasonally dry and wet soils, and salt. The alluring flowers arise in between the leaves. Occasionally orange fruits develop that will ripen to purple. Nectar-seeking insects and birds will frequent this shrub while in flower.
Lavender starflower grows well in full sun to...
Forest & Kim Starr
(Common Lignum Vitae, Palo Santo)
Loved for its purple to blue-violet flowers that yield bright red fruits, lignum vitae is heat, drought and salt tolerant, making it stupendous as a specimen in the coastal tropics. A rounded evergreen tree from the northern coastline of South America and the Caribbean islands, it is extremely slow growing and has a crooked, knotty form that adds to its beauty. The wood is very dense and does not float.
The green to yellow-green glossy leaves are leathery and held on yellowish leaf stems (petioles)....
Mark A. Miller
(Holy-wood, Lignum Vitae)
Loved for its rich violet-blue flowers that yield bright red fruits, lignum vitae is heat, drought and salt tolerant, making it stupendous as a specimen in the coastal tropics. A rounded evergreen tree from Central America, the West Indies and the Keys of Florida, it is extremely slow growing and has a airy, crooked, knotty form that adds to its beauty. The wood is very dense and does not float, but less so than the common lignum vitae (Guaiacum officinale).
The green glossy leaves are...
(Guarianthe Orchid, Orchid)
For generations, these orchids were lumped into the genus Cattleya. With molecular DNA analysis, botanists soon realized that a handful of species were best placed in their own group: Guarianthe. The genus name comes from a Costa Rican word for orchid and the Greek word "anthe," meaning "flower." The less than 10 Guarianthe species and natural hybrids are native to the hot, humid forests of Central America and northernmost South America. They are epiphytes (grow on trees).
(Orange Cattleya, Orange Guarianthe Orchid)
Guarianthe aurantiaca (fomerly known as Cattleya aurantiaca) is an epiphytic orchid grown for its spring display of showy orange blooms. It is native to humid upland forests from Mexico to El Salvador, naturally occurring on tree limbs and rock outcroppings.
This evergreen perennial spreads by creeping rhizomes to form colonies of cylindrical to spindle-shaped, cane-like pseudobulbs, each topped by two stiff, leathery, oval leaves. Dense clusters of red-orange to yellow...
(Giant Rhubarb, Poorman's Umbrella)
The massive leaves of poorman's umbrella can truly be used as make-shift shelters if one were caught in a subtropical rainstorm. They are unbelievably large reaching up to 6-feet (2-meters) across! This herbaceous tender perennial is native to the cool, moist mountain rainforest of southern Central America.
Growing from a rhizome, poorman's umbrella sends up upright green stems each topped with a rounded, ruffled leaf. The huge leaf stems, or petioles, are covered with somewhat hairy red scales...