Friday, March 27, 2015

Wintergreen

Chimaphila

Chimaphila maculata ( Striped Wintergreen )
A perennial, reaching up to 1 foot in height, that is native to dry, acidic or sandy pine woods in eastern North America ( from Traverse City, Michigan to Wasaga Beach and Long Point in Ontario to southern Quebec to New Hampshire; south to northeast Mississippi to northern Georgia ). It is critically endangered in Ontario where just 4 populations remain and Quebec with just one tiny remaining population. It likely had a much wider range in the past in southern Ontario that would have included the Leamington area, Grand Bend, and a wider portion of Haldimand-Norfolk County. It is also endangered in Illinois, Maine and New York.
The lance-shaped leaves, up to 2.8 x 1 inch in size, are deep green with a whitish midrib and veins.
Up to 5 fragrant, white flowers are borne per umbel during late summer
Hardy zones 5 to 8, it thrives in partial to full shade on acidic soil with pine needle mulch. It is typically found in coniferous and pine-oak forests in the wild.

USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

* photos taken on Apr 27 2015 in Howard Co., MD

* photos taken on Aug 20 2016 in Olney, MD

* photos taken on Sep 18 2016 @ Patuxent Research Refuge, Laurel, MD


Chimaphila umbellata ( Wintergreen )
Also called Pipsissewa. An evergreen, rhizomatous ( sometimes forming large colonies ) perennial, reaching up to 14 inches in height, that is native to dry upland coniferous woodland. It is a widespread native of North America's boreal and mixed forest region ( from Skagway, Alaska to far southwest Northwest Territories to Gimli, Manitoba to Lake Nipigon to Chapleau, Ontario to central Quebec to Labrador and Newfoundland; south to the mountains of California, AZ & NM to northeast Iowa to northern Indiana to southern West Virginia to North Carolina ). It is also native to the boreal region of northern Eurasia. It is rare in all of Maryland and critically endangered in Kentucky where it has a disjunct distribution in just one county in the south-central part of the State. It is also endangered in Saskatchewan. In the Windsor/Essex County, Ontario region; it was only noted as occurring on the Ohio lakeshore but likely also occurred sporadically in southern Essex County at that time.
The toothed, oblanceolate leaves, up to 2.8 x 0.9 inches in size, are glossy deep green. They are borne in pairs or whorls of 3 or 4.
The white to pinkish flowers, up to 0.6 inches wide, are borne per umbel of 4 to 8 during summer
Hardy zones 2 to 7, it thrives in partial to full shade on acidic sandy soil with pine needle mulch. It is typically found in coniferous forests in the wild.

* photos taken by Jean Pawek @ CalPhotos

USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

* historical archive photos

Polkadots

Dyschoriste linearis ( Polkadots )
A groundcover perennial, reaching up to 1 x 2.5 feet in size, that is native from western Oklahoma to western Texas.
The oppositely-arranged, oblanceolate leaves, up to 2.7 inches in length, are bright green.
The lavender-purple ( purple striped throat ) flowers, up to 1.1 x 1 inch in size, are borne during late spring, repeating during late summer if rainfall is adequate. The flowers are borne from the leaf axils. They attract butterflies and honey bees.
Hardy zones 7 to 9 in full sun to partial shade on just about any well drained soil. It is tolerant of extreme heat, drought, alkaline soil and temporary flooding.

* photo taken on Aug 23 2014 @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC

Toadflax

Linaria vulgaris ( Butter & Eggs )
A rhizomatous perennial, reaching up to 3.3 x 1 foot, that is a widespread native of Europe and northern Asia where it is often found on roadsides and sand dunes. While I find it to be too beautiful to call a weed, it can become invasive on some sites. It is locally naturalized in eastern North America to as far north as Fairbanks, Alaska; southwest Yukon; Edmonton, Alberta; Ignace, Ontario; Chapleau, Ontario and Ottawa.
The linear leaves, up to 3 x 0.1 inches in size, are blue-green to mid-green.
The yellow flowers, up to 1 inch long, are borne late spring to mid-autumn. Linaria purpurea ( Purple Toadflax ) is similar except with pink or purple flowers.
Hardy zones 2 to 8 in full sun on sandy, well drained soil. It is very drought tolerant. Propagation is from division or seed sown during spring.

* photos taken on Sep 30 2014 in Howard Co., MD

* photo taken on July 14 2016 in Lions Head, Ontario


'Canon Went'
Pink flowers; it is otherwise identical to species.
It comes true from seed.

'Springside White'
Pure white flowers, it is otherwise identical to species.
It comes true from seed.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cestrum

Cestrum
A genus of deciduous or evergreen, shrubs or small trees that are part of the larger nightshade family.
Most species thrive in full sun to partial shade on just about any fertile, well drained soils that are moist during summer. Propagation is from seed or softwood cuttings.

* photos taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


Cestrum aurantiacum ( Orange Cestrum )
A semi-evergreen to evergreen, scrambling, large shrub, reaching a maximum size of 20 x 10 feet, that is native from Mexico to Guatemala. It can be kept pruned as a more tidy shrub.
The aromatic, ovate leaves, up to 7 x 3 inches in size, are bright green. The leaves are slightly hairy at first then becoming smooth.
The orange flowers are borne 10 to 15 on terminal clusters, up to 4 inches wide, during spring and summer. They often repeat bloom during autumn.
Fleshy white berries follow.
Hardy zones 8 to 12.

Cestrum diurnum ( Day Jessamine )
A fast growing, small tree, reaching a maximum size of 35 x 38 feet, that is native to tropical America and the Caribbean.
The elliptical leaves, up to 6 x 2 inches in size, are bright green.
The white, tubular flowers are borne up to 20 on a panicle that is up to 4 inches in length. The flowers are fragrant during the daytime.
They are followed by small, purple berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 12. It is moderately salt tolerant and very drought tolerant.

Cestrum elegans ( Red Cestrum )
Also called Cestrum purpureum. A fast growing, arching shrub, reaching a maximum size of 13 x 10 feet, that is native to tropical forests of Mexico. Some records include: 5 years - 10 x 6.5 feet.
The aromatic or oblong leaves, up to 7 x 3 inches in size, are hairy and olive-green.
The red to bright purple, tubular flowers are borne on dense, terminal panicles during summer to fall.
They are followed by rounded, purplish-red berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 10.

'Smithii'
Lance-shaped leaves are orange to scarlet-red flowers.

Cestrum 'Newellii'
A fast growing, arching shrub, reaching a maximum size of 13 x 10 feet. It can become invasive in some regions. Some records include: 5 years - 10 x 6.5 feet.
The aromatic, narrowly-ovate leaves, up to 4 inches in length, are hairy deep green.
The unscented, rich deep red flowers are borne on clusters up to 5 inches in length. They may appear throughout the year in mild climates.
They are followed by rounded, deep red berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 12.

Cestrum nocturnum ( Night-Scented Jessamine )
A fast growing, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 20 x 13 ( rarely over 12 ) feet, that is native to the Caribbean. It has become invasive in some parts of the world including Australia.
The thick leaves, up to 8 x 2 inches in size, are bright green.
The abundant, very fragrant, bright greenish-yellow, tubular flowers are borne summer into late autumn. The scent can be detected as far away as 50 feet during night.
They are followed by ovoid white berries.
Hardy zones 9 to 12 ( possibly even 7 & 8 as a perennial on protected sites with deep winter mulch ).

Cestrum 'Orange Peel'
The very vigorous hybrid between Cestrum diurnum and C. nocturnum. Reaches up to 12 x 10 feet, or up to 8 x 8 feet if grown as a perennial.
The lance-shaped leaves are glossy mid-green.
The fragrant, bright orange tubular flowers appear late spring through mid-autumn.
Hardy zones 7 to 10 ( perennial in zone 7 ) in full sun to partial shade.

* photo taken on June 19 2016 in Elkridge, MD

* photo taken on July 5 2016 in Elkridge, MD


Cestrum parqui ( Green Cestrum )
A fast growing, suckering, upright, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 18 x 10 feet, that is native to Chile. Some records include: 5 years - 5 x 6.5 feet. It can become an invasive weed in some warmer climate regions.
The lance-shaped to elliptical leaves, up to 6 x 1.7 inches in size, are mid-green.
The abundant, bright yellow, tubular flowers are borne on terminal racemes throughout most of the year. The flowers are fragrant at night.
They are followed by purplish-brown berries.
Hardy zones 8 to 12 ( 7b as a perennial on protected sites with deep winter mulch...prunings from the old christmas tree makes a good protective mulch ).

Monday, March 23, 2015

Saltbush

Atriplex
A genus of mostly evergreen shrubs that are native to mostly dry regions around the world. Many species are valuable as cover for wildlife where few other options are available. Many other species are great for hedging.
Many are tolerant of extreme drought, seashore conditions and salty soils. Most can be cut back hardy, responding with dense, vigorous growth. Propagation is from seed or softwood cuttings. Seed should be soaked overnight in water before sowing.

Atriplex barklayana
An evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 1.5 x 4 feet, that is native to Baja California.
The leaves, up to 1 inch in length, are whitish.
Hardy zones 10 to 11.

Atriplex canescens ( Fourwing Saltbush )
A long-lived, fast growing, dense, medium-sized, evergreen shrub, rarely reaching up to 7 x 15 feet, that is a widespread native to dry regions of western North America ( from eastern Washington State to Drumheller, Alberta to central North Dakota; south to northern Mexico including the Baja Peninsula ). A form found at Jericho, Utah is much more tree-like, reaching a maximum size of 15 x 18 feet. Some records include: 3 years - 6.6 x 15 feet; largest on record - trunk diameter of 10 inches. It is very deep rooted, with root known to reach 40 feet in depth though rarely over 20.
The linear leaves, up to 2 x 0.4 inches in size, are gray. It is an important plant for browsing livestock.
The natives made bread from grinding the seeds.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 ( tolerating -40 F ). It is extremely heat tolerant and very tolerant of drought, salt, sand, clay, alkaline soil and brackish water. It requires 8 to 24 inches of average yearly rainfall or equivalent. Plants may take up to 4 years to establish and speed up in growth.

* photo taken by Loren St. John @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database


'Marana'
A form released by the USDA that is especially well adapted to the Mediterranean climate regions of southern California with average yearly rainfall ranging from 8 to 4o inches. It is otherwise identical to the species.

* Photos courtesy of USDA NRCS.


Atriplex cinerea ( Coast Saltbush )
A dense, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 5 x 10 feet, that is native to coastal regions of southern Africa and Australia.
The leaves, up to 2 inches in length, are blue-green.
Hardy zones 9 to 10 in full sun on pure sand.

Atriplex halimus
A fast growing, spreading, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 13 x 10 feet, that is native to salt marshes of southern Europe. Some records include: 5 years - 13 feet.
The oblanceolate leaves, up to 2.5 inches in length, are silvery-white.
The greenish-white flowers are borne on spikes, up to 12 inches in length, during late summer.
Hardy zones 7 to 10.

Atriplex lentiformis ( Big Saltbush )
A moderate growing, deciduous or evergreen shrub, reaching up to 10 x 12 ( rarely over 8 ) feet, that is native to the southwestern U.S. ( from north-central California to central Nevada to southwest Utah; south to Mexico.
The ovate, triangular or oblong leaves are up to 2.5 x 1 inches in size.
The fruits provide valuable food for wildlife.
Tolerant of heat, wind, salt and alkaline soils. It requires 7 to 24 inches of average yearly rainfall.

* USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database


var 'Breweri'
A fast growing, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 12 x 15 feet, that is native to coastal California.
The foliage is deeper silvery-green than the species.
Hardy zones 6 to 10 ( tolerating as low as -20 F ). It requires 7 to 24 inches of average yearly rainfall.

'Casa'
An especially drought hardy, attractive form selected by the USDA. Fast growing, dense and upright in habit, reaching up to 12 x 12 feet.
The foliage is silvery-green.
Hardy zones 8b to 10.

* Photo courtesy of USDA NRCS.


Atriplex polycarpa ( Desert Saltbush )
An evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 7 x 6 feet, that is native to the southwestern U.S. ( from central California to central Nevada to southwest Utah; south to Mexico ).
The leaves are up to 0.5 inches in length, are silvery-white.
Hardy zones 7 to 10. It is extremely tolerant of drought and alkaline soils. It is also tolerant of wet soil. It requires an average yearly rainfall of 3.5 to 10 inches.

Atriplex semibaccata
A fast growing, evergreen shrub, reaching a maximum size of 2.5 x 7 feet, that is native to Australia.
The smooth to lightly-toothed, oblong leaves, up to 1.5 inches in length, are gray-green.
Hardy zones 7 to 10. It is tolerant of salty, highly alkaline and wet soil. It requires an average yearly rainfall of 8 to 16 inches.

'Corto'
A low groundcover form, reaching just 10 inches in height. It is a USDA introduction. Hardy zones 8b to 10 ( tolerating as low as 15 F ).

* Photo courtesy of USDA NRCS.


Atriplex spinifera
A dense, evergreen shrub, reaching up to 6.5 x 6.5 feet, that is native to California.
The leaves, up to 1 inch in length, are gray.
Hardy zones 7 to 10. It requires an average yearly rainfall of 2 to 6 inches and a soil PH from 7 to 9. It is very salt tolerant and extremely drought tolerant.