Category: Butterfly and Hummingbird Gardening

Rare & Unusual Tropical Trees & Plants, Flowering, Fruit, Native, Palm, Bamboo, Heliconia, Hummingbird, Butterfly

Bauhinia divaricata (Butterfly Orchid Tree)

The genus Bauhinia, is named after 16th century Swiss-French identical twin brothers who were botanists, Johann and Caspar Bauhin.  Appropriately named, because the leaves of Bauhinia, are two-lobed and perfectly symmetrical. This particular species blooms year round with pink and white whispy flowers, and is an excellent nectar source for butterflies, especially, the Giant Swallowtail.  As a…
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May 24, 2015 0

Biscayne Prickly Ash (Zanthoxylum coriaceum)

Does this name fail to ring a bell with you?  Fret not; you aren’t alone.  Biscayne Prickly Ash is among the rarest, and least known, of our state’s native flora.  While the small tree occurs naturally from the western Caribbean into Florida, from Palm Beach County south, coastal development has been making it vanish.  (It…
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December 19, 2014 0

The Monarch Butterfly

Perhaps the best known butterfly in North America is the Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus).  South Florida is very lucky this time of year, and not just for our mild climate.  While most of the United States is in the middle of a frigid winter, with its Monarch Butterfly population safely hibernating in the Oyamel Fir…
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January 12, 2014 0

Firebush (Hamelia patens)

No less a publication than Southern Living magazine has long recommended our native Firebush, Hamelia patens, to its readership.  And it’s no wonder.  The species has many endearing qualities. First, if not foremost, it’s rather cold-tolerant.  The Florida Native Plant Society regards it as suitable for planting through Zone 9a, whose northern limit is along…
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June 8, 2013 0

Golden Dewdrops (Duranta erecta f/k/a Duranta repens)

If you’re not already familiar with Duranta erecta, now is a good time to get acquainted with this very attractive New World flowering species.  Like a lot of plants, it comes with its own little bag of mysteries:  Its current specific epithet, erecta, means upright.  Yet an older epithet, repens, means creeping.  That sounds like…
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May 24, 2013 0