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The leaves have an oblong shap.The seeds are contained in a cotton-like envelope. Dark, maroon flowers are formed in terminal panicles. The leaves and stems are covered with soft, bristly hairs that are extremely irritating to the touch.
Achimenes species and hybrids are commonly grown as greenhouse plants, or outdoors as bedding plants in subtropical regions. The species have been extensively hybridized, with many of the hybrids involving the large-flowered species A. grandiflora and A. longiflora. Many of the species and their hybrids have large, brightly colored flowers and are cultivated as ornamental greenhouse and bedding plants.
Adansonia za, or Baobab, is an imposing ethnomedical plant native to Madagascar with its full sun, moderate water requirements, and unusual color. This big tree can grow taller than 20 ft, producing deciduous foliage and stunning flowers that vary in color from crimson to vinous, and yellow to orange. It is a delightfully hardy plant that not only emits a unique beauty in the garden, but is also attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds.
The blooms can be followed by an edible fruit that tastes delicately sweet and acidic. The fruit also carries a wealth of health benefits, containing vitamins A, C, and E, thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, and folate. An average Baobab fruit tree can yield an estimated 150-200 fruits in a single year.
Baobab can be grown in USDA Zones 9-11, and since the tree is deciduous, it can withstand some cold temperatures, making it a great option for gardens in cooler climates. When growing a Baobab in a pot, it is important to use a well draining potting mix, as the tree does not like to stay wet. Keep the pot in a sheltered spot and bring it indoors during frosty winter nights. Water the tree regularly, especially during the hotter summer months. An occasional dose of fertilizer will also help promote healthy growth.
The first double flowered variety of Adenium that we obtained was bright red color. After growing simple pink varieties, it seemed the most exotic flower. Soon enough other colors were hybridized and white and pink double flowers came to the market. Within just a year or two after that, all the sudden all kinds of colors appeared, including striped, dotted, spotted... The rainbow of hybrid adeniums nowadays is unbelievable!
Adeniums have many spectacular hybrids. The basic culture is very similar to orchids. A small pot with excellent drainage is a must. Adeniums do not like both over-watering or drying-out. There is a little secret of how to create a weird shape of the base: lift the plant a bit every time you re-pot the plant, so that the upper part of roots will be a little exposed. The plant will form more roots that will go down. To make your plant develop a large swollen base/trunk, you'll need a good quality fertilizer. Fertilizer requirement for swelling up trunks is also used to increase flowering. It shouldn't be too high in nitrogen, the middle number should be the highest. Never apply fertilizer directly on roots and do not liquid feed when a plant is thirsty: always water first slightly to avoid root burn and leaf drop. Do not wet leaves. Adeniums need lots of light for heavy flowering. Most hybrids and species start blooming in the spring when the conditions are warm and days get longer, and continue blooming through the fall and winter in warmer climates. Adeniums like a neutral to hard water. Acidic water tends to sour the soil too fast and may cause root rot. Water plants preferably in the early morning, and allow them to drink up throughout the day. Watering can be done daily to every few days. Never allow your plants to sit in a saucer of water, but don't let them to dry out too often - this causes adeniums to go into early dormancy.
Species and varieties:
See photo gallery of exotic varieties and Thai Adeniums - milti-colored, multi-grafted.