Tag Archives: Pink Flowers

14 May

Euphorbia milii, The Crown of Thorns

I have been growing Euphorbia milii (also known as Crown of Thorns) for many years and I grow it for many purposes. It makes a nice hedge plant, it is an excellent flowering bush for container gardening, and it adds beautiful colors to a landscape.

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Euphorbia milii is a bushy succulent and bears small yet attractive flowers almost throughout the year. The stem is covered with sharp and dense spines, and bright green leaves near the growing ends. Flowers are red, pink and white though you can find a wide range hybrid Euphorbia Milii that bear more colorful flowers (yellow, orange, cream and many mixed colors). Hybrid varieties are usually grown as grafted plants and display larger flowers.
Euphorbia milii.

How to Grow Euphorbia milii

The actual home of Euphorbia Milii is Madagascar, however it has been successfully acclimatized and grown commercially in many parts of the world. Euphorbia Milii requires well drained soil, moderate water and good sunlight, however, it can survive drought and high temperature. It can be propagated from cuttings that can be rooted or grafted on a stock. When growing from cuttings, allow cuttings to dry for a few days and then plant them in a mixture of moist soil and peat moss. Keep the medium barely moist till plants are established. Over watering would rot these tender cuttings.

Euphorbia milii o Corona de Cristo

Image from riverrocksucculents.comEuphorbia milii can be used as hedge plant, pruned down for edging, grown to cover spaces in rock garden or landscape, or kept as indoor ornamental plant (provided with ample sunlight).

Euphorbia milii is named after Baron Milius who introduced these plants on France.

Euphorbia milii

10 May

Lagerstroemia: Flowering Shrubs and Trees

Lagerstroemia, commonly known as Crepe Myrtle, is a genus of about 50 species of flowering shrubs and trees. Native to the Indian subcontinent, South Asia and Oceania, most species of Lagerstroemia are found in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, China, Australia and parts of Central America.

Lagerstroemia Speciosa

Lagerstroemia bears beautiful flowers of pink, purple, mauve and white colors in summer. In full bloom, bright green leaves and clusters of flowers make it an excellent choice as ornamental tree for homes and gardens. Lagerstroemia sheds its leaves in a gradual process so you would hardly find it completely bare. Flowers contain six or seven crumpled and wrinkled petals, that is why, Lagerstroemia is also called Crepe Flowers tree.

Apart from its ornamental value, Lagerstroemia Speciosa (commonly known as Banaba) is widely used in preparation of medicine for diabetes and obesity. The timber is durable and takes fine polish. For this reason it is widely used in manufacturing of furniture and wooden panels.

Popular Species of Lagerstroemia

Lagerstroemia Indica (Indian Lilac or Crepe Myrtle) – It is a large flowering shrub that bears sprays of ornamental flowers from May to August. Flowers are white, pink, rose or mauve. It also makes a good candidate for a bonsai project.

Lagerstroemia Lancasteri – This hybrid variety flowers abundantly. A perfect ornamental shrub!

Lagerstroemia Speciosa (Queen’s Myrtle, Banaba, Pride of India) – It is the most common species of Lagerstroemia. The plant turns into small or medium tree. Leaves of Lagerstroemia Speciosa have medicinal value and are exported world wide.

Lagerstroemia Indica

Lagerstroemia Indica, Image © W. J. Hayden

04 May

Nasturtium, Jewels in My Garden

I love Nasturtium for many reasons: its flowers stand out like small jewels, it is not so demanding and repels pests, it makes perfect plant to fill edges, empty garden beds, and containers… and i like its peppery flavor in salads 🙂

Nasturtium is a self-seeding annual and perennial herbaceous plant that bears white, yellow, orange, maroon and pink flowers. Nasturtium belongs to the Tropaeolaceae family and comes from South and Central America. It is a popular ornamental plant that grows well in direct and filtered sunlight.

Nasturtium Flowers

Image © Patricia Hamilton

Nasturtium also makes a good companion plant as it repels pests and caterpillars. Because Nasturtium attracts black fly aphids, it is usually grown as companion plant to save crops from aphids by acting as defense shield.

All parts of Nasturtium are edible. The seed pods are picked, tubers of some species are used as source of food, and flowers of nasturtium are used to garnish salads or prepare Nasturtium Lemon Butter. Nasturtium flowers can also be used in potpourri.

Growing Nasturtium

Nasturtium is an easy and fast grower. It grows well in well drained soil under full or partial sun. Nasturtium does not require rich soil; in fact, it produces more leaves and less flowers in soil is too rich. Leaves are light-green and round in shape. Flowers are shaped like a funnel.

Nasturtium Leaves

Image © Ken Mccown

There are many commercially grown varieties of Nasturtium available today that slightly vary in habit. Dwarf varieties make good plants for edging whereas the climbing varieties can be grown against fences in the garden or in pots with trellises. The cascading varieties are wonderful for hanging baskets.

Popular Varieties of Nasturtium

Alaska Series – These Nasturtiums remain dwarf and bear prominent flowers.

Jewel Series – Nasturtium in Jewel Series bear relatively larger flowers; the plant remains bushy and dwarf.

Canary Creepers – Canary Creeper Nasturtium is a climber and grows as perennial flowering vine. It can be grown against trellis.