Plant Common Name
Lovely long, white, tubular flowers and colorful red and blue seeds makes the starfish clerodendrum among the most beautiful large shrubs in the tropical garden. A fast growing, and relatively short-lived shrub, it is native to the island of Sulawesi (Celebes) in Indonesia. Its leaves are smooth, glossy and handsomely green with deep veins. In late spring, the branch tips fill with clusters of pinkish, pleated flowerbuds that are very pretty, and soon thereafter the long, white flower tubes emerge and reveal five-petaled flowers with long stamens that are pollinated by butterflies and moths. Flowering can occur in subsequent flushes throughout the warm growing season. After the flowers drop, the calyx of each flower, which is the small leaf that once protected the developing flowerbud, curls backward and turns a robust red. In the center of the fused calyces is the lovely turquoise-blue to blackish blue, juicy fruit. Well after the blooming displays, this large shrub remains very ornamental.
Grow starfish clerodendrum in a fertile, well-drained soil that is in full sun or lightly shaded exposures. It is fast growing, and can be trained into a small tree if lowest branches are removed and the various suckering stems are clipped off from the plant’s spreading roots. This is a terrific plant to grow as a specimen, in either rounded shrub or small tree form, or in the mixed border. It is an efficient hedge or screening plant as well.
AHS Heat Zone
12 - 5
USDA Hardiness Zone
10 - 15
H1, H2, 24
Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade
10'-23' / 3.0m - 7.0m
15'-30' / 4.6m - 9.1m
Spring, Late Spring, Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer, Early Fall
Spring, Summer, Fall
Feature Plant, Foundation, Hedges, Mixed Border, Shade Trees, Tropical
Sharp or Has Thorns