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This is one of the most beautiful, exciting and useful plants among fragrant tropicals. A very fragrant, enchanting shrub, flowers are fruity scented, pendant, are born along its twiggy branches. Foliage is thin and slightly hairy, it can flower almost all year, easy to prune for shape and size. It is widely planted near and around temples and homes for its stunning fragrance. Prefers well draining soil, partial to full sun. A truly remarkable site! It has always been a popular ornamental tree in temples and houses. In Thailand, it is probably the most popular plant, you can see it everywhere along the streets planted in ground as a specimen, a hedge or potted, it belongs to every garden! This plant is sacred among Buddists. Fruits are paired pods, 9" long. Wrightia is easy to maintain and requires minimum supervision but needs constant watering only. Wrightia is cold sensitive and becomes deciduous under 65F, it might look ugly in winter in cooler zones (hardy to zone 9). In warm subtropical and tropical climates it stays evergreen and blooms year round. Because of its fast growth rate Wrightia can be trained into a bonsai tree within a short period of time. It can be easily trained and wired into odd and weird shapes. Traditionally used as medicinal herb. Roots are used to cure skin disease. There are many varieties and cultivars of wrightia.
The Ivy Tree is an usual plant in that it's the result of a cross between two genera, the Hedera (English ivy) and Fatsia japonica. The resulting hybrid has the interesting and lovely leaf shape of the Fatsia, which can be seen growing along the roadsides throughout the tropical world, and the cultural requirements and basic climbing habit of its ivy parent. As a shrub, Fatshedera can grow up to 1.2 m tall, above which the weight of the fairly weak branches makes them tend to bend over. It can however also be tied to a support and grow into a vine up to 3-4 m tall; unlike Hedera, it does not readily climb without assistance.
It is grown both as a garden plant outdoors, and as a houseplant indoors, where its tolerance of shady conditions is valued.
Excellent small flowering tree or shrub with long-lasting green foliage. ! In Spring, it bears multitudes of flower spikes densely packed with star-shaped white flowers featuring chartreuse centers that darken to an intense scarlet.
The leaves, flowers, and seeds of Xanthoceras sorbifolium are all edible.
The name of genus Xanthorrhoea comes from the Greek Xanthos for yellow and rheo meaning flow, referring to a yellow resin exuded from the trunk of some species of Xanthorrhoea.
The Xanthorrhoea genus is part of the Xanthorrhoeaceae family, which is made up of small trees or perennials with woody stems. The leaves are tough and linear, and the flowers are radially symmetrical, bisexual, and spike-like.
Commonly called Grass Trees, Xanthorrhoea plants are also known as Balga Grass to the Australian aborigines, which is their word for black boy. The Aborigines probably called these plants balga because after a wild fire, the bottom leaves burn away revealing a singed black trunk with long green reed-like leaves extending from the top of the trunk giving the appearance of black figures. All species of Xanthorrhoea are very slow growing, but they are also very long lived - up to 600 years! Long straight spears of white blossoms extend from the top of the tree especially in the year following wild fires.
The glassy resin which exudes from the trunks was previously used in varnish and other products. The flakes of resin were collected from around the base of the stem, heated and rolled into balls.The flowering spikes of the grass tree were soaked in water to make a sweet drink, fresh or slightly fermented. The soft bases of the young leaves were eaten. Tough leaves were used as knives. Europeans harvested the gum to make varnishes and lacquers.
Generally frost tolerant, all Xanthorrhoea require well-drained soil and a sunny location because they are prone to root rot. They can be grown very successfully in pots.