February 16, 2018

Enough. It's time to do something about gun violence. Visit Everytown for Gun Safety (everytown.org) to learn how. End the slaughter and be good and grow. Jack

New Plant Profile

Irish yew The English yew (Taxus baccata) is an Old World species that has been in cultivation for over a thousand years. Hundreds of cultivars of this handsome evergreen are available in a range of shapes and sizes. The yew is traditionally symbolic of: The Tree of Life, Immortality, Rebirth, Protection, Longevity, Change, Divinity, Strength and also are wonderful plants to use in the landscape so you might want to plant one in your USDA Zone 7 - 8 yard. Read more »

More Yews

Japanese yew The Japanese yew (Taxus cuspidata) is a close relative of the above English yew and together they are the parent species of the familiar group of landscape evergreens Taxus x media. Read profile » about these yews you can use in your USDA Zones 5-7 landscape.

Florida yew Florida yew, (Taxus floridana), is one of the rarest trees in the world and is listed as an Endangered Species by state and federal agencies. Florida yew occurs only in forested bluffs and ravines scattered along a 15-mile reach on the east side of the Apalachicola River in Florida's panhandle (USDA Zone 8). Read more »

The Cherries

purple sand cherry Purple sand cherry (Prunus x cistena) is a woody shrub or small tree with reddish-purple foliage that is often planted in home landscapes. In spring fragrant pink flowers are produced at the same time the leaves appear. Purple sand cherry is popular for use in home landscapes in USDA Zones 3-8 in foundation plantings, mixed hedges and specimens.

Yoshino cherry blossom Some of the showiest spring-blooming ornamental shrubs and trees are Prunus species. One of the most famous is the Yoshino cherry (Prunus x yedoensis) that is widely planted, including Washington, D.C. which is famous for the springtime spectacle created by this and other flowering cherry species.

These Prunus species are American natives that also produce showy flowers at this time of year:

Attract Hummingbirds

nasturtium Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus) is a very easy to grow annual that hummingbirds love and so will you! The large seeds are easy to handle and germinate quickly. The plants grow and bloom quickly. As a special bonus, the flowers and young leaves are edible! Here's a few favorite springtime hummingbird attractors (set the "Attracts Hummingbirds" Feature filter to see more in Master Plant List):

scarlet rose mallow How could any hummingbird resist the incredibly gorgeous flowers of the wild columbine Aquilegia canadensis)? It blooms in the early spring and is extremely easy to grow, in sun or partial shade. The dainty flowers are produced over a long spring and summer season and often more than once per year. Download a large version of this image for a closer look at this spring beauty.

For Wet Soils

scarlet rose mallow Even when it doesn't rain torrents every day, you may have places in your yard and garden that for one reason or another stays wet/moist most of the time. Many beautiful plants prefer to grow in wet soils so take advantage to grow beauties like the the scarlet hibiscus Hibiscus coccineus) and many other garden favorites that thrive under such conditions. More species that prefer moist soils:

Grow Time

seedlings Steve says you should start your own pepper and tomato plants 6-8 weeks before they will be planted out in the garden (after all danger of frost has past! :-) If you want to grow unusual or heirloom varieties you must start your own as these are not typically offered for sale as plants so Start Your Own Pepper and Tomato Plants!

Flowering Plants of Hawaii

Plants of HawaiiThe Hawaiian Islands are home to an array of native plant species that has attracted the attention of botanists, naturalists, horticulturists and world travelers ever since Europeans first visited the islands near the end of the 18th century. Read more »

You'll find more links on our Articles and Resources page.

Spring Blooming Woodies

red buckeye The red buckeye (Aesculus pavia) is a delightful little tree (or large shrub) that is native to the southeastern United States. They bloom in spring, taking over the show as the azaleas and dogwood flowers are fading. Click here to download a large version (800x600) of this native (to the southeastern USA) beauty and visit the Red Buckeye Profile to see others.

red horsechestnut The red horsechestnut (Aesculus x carnea) is a very showy spring bloomer and popular ornamental tree. Red horsechestnut (Aesculus x carnea) is a hybrid species resulting from a (presumed) chance cross between the shrubby red buckeye (Aesculus pavia) from SE North America, and common horsechestnut (A. hippocastanum), a much larger tree from Europe. Click here to download a large version (800x600) of this flamboyant flower and read more in the Red Horsechestnut Profile.

Here are some other spring-blooming woody ornamentals:

Master Plant List

Click here to find plants in our Encyclopedia using the Master Plant List grid. Use this widget to search, sort and filter Floridata's plant database to easily locate Plant Profile pages. Use the dropdown menus to filter the grid to display items matching the selected Plant Type and Feature tags.

Plant Type Tags

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Feature Tags

Attracts Birds
Attracts butterflies
Attracts Hummingbirds
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for pots and containers
drought tolerant plants
grows in wet soils
ornamental fruits
fall color
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easy to grow plants
fast growing

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Field Trip to Africa - Desert Life Visit the Kalahari and Namib deserts of southern Africa with Bruce Bohm as he explores the unique Desert Life of this legendary region. You'll see desert rose, and pencil trees and the spectacular tree aloe (in photo). We will be posting many more of Bruce's articles in the coming months. Links to related articles:

You'll find more links on our Articles and Resources page.

Cool Weather Root Crops

potato Late winter to early spring is a perfect time to grow your own vegetables. Steve plants potatoes (Solanum tuberosum) in his North Florida winter vegetable garden every year. He grows several other kinds of root and leafy green vegetables throughout the seasons (read his All Year Vegetable Gardening ). Even if you live in colder climates you'll find there are many cold-tolerant species that you can continue to harvest well after "first frost". I made some list of cold-hardy vegetables for you to consider:

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