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Jatropha berlandieri, commonly known as Jatropha Buddah Belly, is native to Texas and Mexico. It is an evergreen perennial shrub that makes an ideal low-growing groundcover, growing up to a maximum of two feet in height. It has an ornamental foliage and its poppy-red, crimson and vinous flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
This plant is hardy in USDA Zones 9-11 and is tolerant of seaside and salt conditions. As it is drought-tolerant, moderate watering and well-draining soil should be provided. A mulch around the base of the plant helps to keep in moisture and control weeds.
In colder regions, the plant can be grown in pots. These should be moved indoors during the winter months to avoid the risk of frost and keep the soil more moist than in its outdoor environment.
It's important to note that the sap of this plant can be irritating to the skin so great care must be taken when handling this jatropha.
Jatropha berlandieri is a low-maintenance plant that is easy to grow, but with its low-stress needs comes a long lifespan. With the right care and attention, this plant can thrive for years to come.
Jatropha gossypiifolia (Bellyache bush) is a large shrub that typically grows up to 5-10 ft tall and is native to tropical regions of America. The plant requires full sun or semi-shaded conditions and regular watering. The vibrant red or crimson flowers of the plant have a vinous odor and are known to attract butterflies and hummingbirds. In addition, the plant has medicinal properties and is used as an ethnomedical plant, though the sap may be irritating on contact. Jatropha gossypifolia is similar to Jatropha curcas but the leaf stalks are covered with coarse dark brown hairs and the young leaves are sticky.
Jatropha gossypifolia, the plant is suitable for growing in USDA Zones 9-11 and does well in large pots or containers in colder regions. Due to its narrow root system, it's important to keep the potting mix consistently moist, but not wet, throughout all seasons. In order to maintain best performance, the soil should be well-draining and of the highest quality organic compost. Regular applications of fertilizer during the growing season will result in more flowers and better overall plant health. As the plant is strongly susceptible to fungal diseases, it is recommended to avoid over-watering and regularly inspect for signs of fungal infection.
The capsular fruit contains three tiny brown seeds. All parts are considered toxic but in particular the seeds.
Jatropha integerrima, also known as Peregrina, is a striking plant with glossy leaves and clusters of scarlet flowers. It grows into a shrub or small tree with a rounded or narrow domed form, reaching a height of up to 15 feet and a spread of 10 feet. In cultivation, it is often smaller and may have several slender trunks, although it can be pruned to a single trunk. The leaves of Peregrina are highly variable, ranging from entire and elliptic or oval to fiddle-shaped or three-lobed. They are bronze when young and brownish on the underside. The flowers, which are about an inch across, appear in multi-flowered terminal clusters almost all year round. There is also a smaller, more compact cultivar called 'Compacta.'
Peregrina is tolerant of a wide range of soil types as long as they are well-draining. It blooms on the current year's growth, so it can be pruned at any time. It responds well to pruning and can be kept as a shrub, trained into a tree form, or used in espalier. It is also drought-tolerant and attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.
In addition to being a beautiful addition to gardens, Peregrina is also a good plant for seaside gardens due to its salt tolerance. While it can withstand temperatures down to the mid-30s for a short period of time, it is not reliably cold hardy in USDA Zone 9 and southward. In colder zones, it can be grown in a container and brought indoors during the winter. To plant Peregrina, choose a location with full sun to part shade and provide regular water. If grown in a container, use a well-draining soil mix and water regularly. When planting in the ground, enrich the soil with compost or rotted manure and mulch with a thick layer of organic material to retain moisture. Prune as needed to maintain the desired shape and size. It is important to note that Jatropha, like many euphorbias, contains a milky sap that can irritate sensitive skin and all parts of the plant are poisonous if ingested.
This lovely, everblooming species of Jatropha is native to Puerto Rico and can be grown in USDA zones 9-11. It's a large shrub that can reach up to 10 feet tall, and can easily be pruned to form a small tree. It's a great option for bonsai and container growers, as it can be grown in a pot indoors or on a patio.
Jatropha multifida is quite a showy plant, with bright red and crimson vinous flowers that pop against its glossy dark green foliage. It's very easy to grow from seed and is fast-growing, and will attract plenty of butterflies and hummingbirds to your garden. It prefers full sun and dry conditions, and is very salt and seaside tolerant, making it great for coastal places.
When growing Jatropha multifida in areas with cold climates, it's best to keep the plant in a container so you can bring it indoors during the winter. Plant it in well-draining soil, and water it regularly while keeping in mind that it tolerates periods of drought. It's quite a tough plant and is able to resist common pests, but watch out for its irritating sap.
In conclusion, Jatropha multifida is a beautiful, everblooming and sun-loving plant that will bring plenty of color and butterflies to your garden. With its hardy, salt-tolerant nature and easy-to-grow-from-seeds habit, it's a great choice for any kind of landscape, even in colder climates. Just keep an eye on its irritating sap and enjoy its attractive showy flowers and abundant yellow fruits.