Under The Jakfruit Tree

Just a quick hit and run post before leaving for the weekend. The most noticeable blooms in the nursery continue to belong to the Blue and White Queen’s Wreath Vines (Petrea volubulis and Petrea volubulis ‘Albiflora’). Richard Lyons Nursery has these two color varieties in various sizes.

Under The Jakfruit Tree

I took a ride around the nursery this morning and quickly realized South Florida ‘winter’ has quickly given way to summer. It seems spring got swept away in global warming. Perhaps there is still time to get back to more seasonal temperatures as March quickly approaches. Anyway, I did see the spectacular blossoms of the Queen’s Wreath Vine (Petrea volubilis), the Jade Vine (Strongylodon macrobotrys), the Asoka Tree (Saraca indica), and the Rabbit’s Foot Shrub (Ruttya fruticose) to name a few. Richard Lyons’ Nursery, has all of these plants for sale currently.

Under The Jakfruit Tree

I took a ride around the nursery today, and the Aristolochia vine on the south fence caught my attention. Aristolochia is a genus of woody vines commonly called, Dutchman’s Pipe or Pipe Vines.  This is due to the shape of the flower resembling a pipe in the species ringens.  Many butterfly enthusiasts in South Florida grow this vine for the larval food of the Polydamus Swallowtail (Battus polydamus), sometimes called the Gold Rimmed Butterfly.  A black butterfly with gold around the wings and no extended ‘tails’ on the hind wings.  It is the only eastern United States Swallowtail without tails. The larvae or caterpillars of this butterfly, is what caught my eye this morning, along with the flower of course. The caterpillars aren’t the most attractive as caterpillars go, but they feed in an interesting pattern. They line up in a row devouring leaf after leaf. Richard Lyons’ Nursery has two species of Aristolochias in 3gal. containers, including, A. ringens.

Under the Jakfruit Tree

It is a good time of year to check in on another winter bloomer that attracts hummingbirds, the Powderpuff shrub (Calliandra). Attaining a height of 6-12′, the red and white varieties only bloom in the winter, while the pink variety blooms year round. Richard Lyons Nursery has all three varieties for sale.