Flame Lily

If you have a burning passion for someone, give them a flame lily.

  • A flame lily is a species of perennial flower, native to a variety of habitats of south Asia, and south to south-eastern Africa.
  • Flame lilies’ are also known as ‘creeping lilies’, ‘fire lilies’, ‘climbing lilies’, ‘glory lilies’, ‘tiger claws’ and ‘gloriosa lilies’.
  • The scientific name of the flame lily is Gloriosa superba and it is from the family Colchicaceae, a family of plants that flower.
  • As flame lily plants tend to be climbers, they grow upwards or along the ground to 4 metres (13 feet) in length, while the flowers have a diameter of 4.5 to 7 centimetres (1.8 to 2.8 inches).
  • Typically, flame lily flowers are predominantly red or orange, transitioning into a yellow colour towards the centre, and they flower in summer and autumn.
Flame Lily, Trivia, Ten Random Facts, Flower, Vegetation, Plant, Yellow, Red
Flame Lily
Image courtesy of Miltos Gikas/Flickr
  • The consumption of any part of flame lily plants can be fatal, with symptoms including numbness, vomiting, dizziness and breathing difficulties, and it is also toxic for most animals.
  • Flame lilies are considered an invasive weed in many countries outside of their native region, including Australia, a number of Pacific Islands and parts of the United States.
  • Flame lilies has been used in traditional medicine to treat cuts, worms, snakebites, skin issues and other health conditions.
  • By creating both seeds and having rhizomes that multiply, flame lilies are efficient at reproducing, and spreading.
  • Flame lilies grow best in partial shade, and they are commonly grown as cut flowers or for other ornamental purposes.
Gloriosa Superba, 2016, Queensland Government Weeds of Australia, http://keyserver.lucidcentral.org/weeds/data/media/Html/gloriosa_superba.htm
Gloriosa Superba, 2016, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gloriosa_superba
Gloriosa Superba (Flame Lily), n.d, Kew Royal Botanic Gardens, http://www.kew.org/science-conservation/plants-fungi/gloriosa-superba-flame-lily
Gloya Lily (Gloriosa Superba), 2014, NSW Department of Primary Industries, http://weeds.dpi.nsw.gov.au/Weeds/Details/62


Fishtail Oxalis

From a little bulb does a fantastic fishtail oxalis grow.

  • Fishtail oxalis is a species of perennial herb that originates in some areas of South America and Central America, as well southern parts of North America.
  • ‘Fishtail oxalis’ are also known as ‘fish-tailed oxalis’, ‘broadleaf wood sorrels’, ‘pink shamrocks’, ‘garden pink-sorrels’, and ‘sorrels’.
  • The scientific name of fishtail oxalis is Oxalis latifolia and it is from the family Oxalidaceae, the family of wood sorrels.
  • Fishtail oxalis plants reach a height of roughly 15 to 30 centimetres (6 to 12 inches), and the leaves have three leaflets that are generally shaped as a fish tail and are typically between 3 to 6 centimetres (1.2 to 2.4 inches) wide.
  • Fishtail oxalis grow from bulbs and generally shoot during autumn months if they have died off after flowering, and the plant does not usually produce seed in most countries.

Fishtail Oxalis, Trivia, Purple, Herb, Flower, Vegetation, Ten Random Facts, Australia

  • Fishtail oxalis usually produce 5 to 12 flowers in a group, that are of a mostly purple, pink, or white colour.
  • Fishtail oxalis spread easily from the multiplication of underground bulbs, and they can be used decoratively in the garden, particularly as a ground cover.
  • Spring months, and into summer, are the most common times for fishtail oxalis to bloom.
  • In some countries, such as Australia, New Zealand, India, and parts of Africa, fishtail oxalis are considered a major invasive weed, and they are also a pest in many other countries.
  • As a wood sorrel, fishtail oxalis are sensitive to light, and as a result the leaves and flowers close at night and sometimes during shady times of the day.
Fishtail Oxalis, n.d, HerbiGuide, http://www.herbiguide.com.au/Descriptions/hg_Fishtail_Oxalis.htm
Oxalis Latifolia, 2016, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxalis_latifolia
Oxalis Latifolia (Sorrel), n.d, Invasive Species Compendium, http://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/38157
Oxalis Latifolia Kunth, n.d, PlantNET, http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/cgi-bin/NSWfl.pl?page=nswfl&lvl=sp&name=Oxalis~latifolia

Madeira Vine

Madeira vines just don’t give up on growing.

  • Madeira vine is a species of perennial vine, that is a somewhat hardy, evergreen plant, native to South America.
  • ‘Madeira vines’ are also known as ‘mignonette vines’, ‘lamb’s tail vines’, and ‘potato vines’.
  • The scientific name of the Madeira vine is Anredera cordifolia, and it is from the family Basellaceae, a family of flowering herbaceous plants.
  • Madeira vine leaves are fleshy and shaped like a heart, and are typically between 2 to 15 centimetres (0.8 to 5.9 inches) in length.
  • The length of a Madeira vine can reach between 30 and 40 metres (98 to 131 feet) particularly when assisted by tall plants and trees, which it uses to climb.

Madeira Vine, Trivia, Ten Random Facts, Vegetation, Plant, Yellow, Green, Leaves

  • A number of countries, including parts of Africa, New Zealand and Australia, consider Madeira vines as major weeds, as they choke out native vegetation and spread easily, especially in subtropical to tropical areas.
  • A Madeira vine grows from a tuber in the ground, and the plant is efficient at regrowing from a broken root, which is one of its primary spreading methods, while water movement, such as creeks or floods, is another way the vines spread.
  • The small flowers of Madeira vines are white to cream in colour, and in summer and autumn they form in clusters along long spikes, which from a distance, look like lamb’s tails.
  • Madeira vines produce large quantities of tubers along their stems, which often break off and start growing in the ground to produce new plants, enabling the plant to easily multiply, and the tubers are also a source of food for the plant when the growing conditions are tough.
  • The Madeira vine is a very quick grower, and in the right conditions, can grow as much as a metre (3.3 feet) in seven days.
Anredera Cordifolia, 2016, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anredera_cordifolia
Madeira Vine, 2015, Business Queensland Government, https://www.business.qld.gov.au/industry/agriculture/species/declared-pests/weeds/madeira-vine
Madeira Vine (Anredera cordifolia), 2011, BioNET-EAFRINET, http://keys.lucidcentral.org/keys/v3/eafrinet/weeds/key/weeds/Media/Html/Anredera_cordifolia_(Madeira_Vine).htm
Madeira Vine (Anredera cordifolia), 2011, Weed Management Guide, http://www.weeds.org.au/WoNS/madeiravine/docs/47053_ERGO_Weed_Mgmt_guide_Madeira_vine_Pages.pdf


Baby’s Breath

Baby’s breath are innocent little flowers, aren’t they?

  • Baby’s breath is a group of perennial and annual plants that produces flowers, and the genus contains approximately 35 species.
  • Areas of Australia, Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Pacific are the native locations of baby’s breath.
  • Baby’s breath has the scientific name Gypsophila and it is from the family Caryophyllaceae, the family of carnations.
  • ‘Baby’s breath’ is also known as ‘soap root’, ‘chalk plant’ and ‘gyp’, and the plants are generally grown from seed.
  • The scientific name of Baby’s breath – ‘Gypsophila’ – comes from the words ‘gypsos’ and ‘philos’, meaning ‘gypsum’ and ‘loving’ respectively in Greek.

Baby's Breath, Plant, Vegetation, White, Ten Random Facts, Australia

  • Baby’s breath generally grows to heights of 15 to 90 centimetres (6 to 35.5 inches), depending on the species, and in most cases they grow best in full sun.
  • The five-petalled flowers of baby’s breath can be white, pink, or violet and they bloom during spring and summer months.
  • The baby’s breath plant often grown for decorative purposes has the scientific name Gypsophila paniculata, and it is commonly used as a cut flower to give a delicate look in arrangements and bouquets.
  • Some baby’s breath species have edible roots, and the plants and roots are also grown for and used as a medical ingredient.
  • Although baby’s breath plants are commonly grown for commercial purposes, some areas have designated some species of the plant as an invasive weed.
Gypsophila, 2015, Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gypsophila
How to Grow Gypsophila, 2015, Gardeners HQ, http://www.gardenershq.com/Gypsophilia-baby-breath.php



Ribwort Plantain

Ribwort plantains have a barren look.

  • Ribwort plantain is a plant native to Asia, Europe and North Africa, and depending on the location and growing conditions, it will grow as a perennial, biennial or annual.
  • ‘Ribwort plantains’ are also known as ‘narrowleaf plantains’, ‘English plantains’, ‘buckhorn plaintains’, ‘lamb’s tongues’, ‘rib grass’ and ‘ribleaves’.
  • The scientific name of a ribwort plantain is Plantago lanceolata, and it is from the family Plantaginaceae, the family of plantains.
  • Ribwort plantain leaves grown in a rosette formation, and the underside of the long green leaves always feature five obvious veins.
  • Ribwort plantains typically grow to be approximately 50 centimetres (20 inches) in height, and they have tall flower spikes, with heads that are surrounded by numerous tiny white petals.

Ribwort Plantain, Vegetation, Weed, Australia, Clump, Grass,, Vegetation, Ten Random Facts

  • The bitter leaves of ribwort plantains are edible and can be eaten cooked or raw, while the seeds can be cooked whole or ground like flour.
  • Ribwort plantains are easily grown from seed in low quality soil, with a preference for full sunlight, and as a result, the plants are increasingly used in pastures for livestock fodder.
  • Ribwort plantain plants have been used medicinally for a variety of purposes, including the slowing or stopping of bleeding, and treating  inflammation, and they can be used to hasten skin healing.
  • Countries such as Australia, has seen ribwort plantains introduced, and this has resulted in them being an invasive weed in some areas.
  • Ribwort plantain plants are useful for textile purposes, as they can be made into dye; the fibres from the leaves can be used; and the seeds can be treated to stiffen fabric.
Environmental Weed Profiles, 2011, Trees For Life, https://www.treesforlife.org.au/sites/default/files/Ribwort%20Plantain_Weed%20Profile.pdf
Plantago lanceolata – L., 2012, Plants For A Future, http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?LatinName=Plantago+lanceolata
Plantago lanceolata, n.d, Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants, http://keys.trin.org.au:8080/key-server/data/0e0f0504-0103-430d-8004-060d07080d04/media/Html/taxon/Plantago_lanceolata.htm


Blue Billygoat Weed

Blue billygoat weed is a strange name for a strange plant.

  • Blue billygoat weeds are an annual plant, native to areas of Central America and Mexico.
  • Blue billygoat weeds have the scientific name Ageratum houstonianum and are from the family Asteraceae, the family of asters and daisies.
  • ‘Blue billygoat weeds’ are also known as ‘blueweeds’, ‘floss flowers’, ‘blueminks’, ‘pussy foots’, ‘Mexican paintbrushes’ and ‘goatweeds’, among others.
  • Blue billygoat weed typically grows to be 30 to 100 centimetres (1 to 3.3 feet) in height and the leaves grow to be 2 to 7 centimetres (0.8 to 2.8 inches) in length.
  • Blue billygoat weed has small seeds that are coloured brown to black, and are covered in small scales that look like hairs.

Blue billygoat weed, Purple, Flower, Ten Random Facts, Plant, Vegetation, Weed

  • Blue billygoat weed is often used for ornamental purposes, such as in gardens, and some of the cultivars have been awarded the British Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.
  • The flowers of blue billygoat weed can be blue, pink, white or purple in colour, and the flower heads are covered with numerous, clustered, tiny tubular flowers, that are thread-like in appearance.
  • Blue billygoat weed contains a chemical that causes premature moulting in insects, and they can be poisonous to animals such as sheep and cows, causing liver problems.
  • Blue billygoat weed has been classified as an invasive weed in many areas, such as parts of the United States, Asia, New Zealand, Europe, Africa and Australia.
  • Blue billygoat weeds are readily grown from seeds, that are easily spread in water and wind, and this is the main cause of its widespread weed status.
Ageratum houstonianum, 2013, Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ageratum_houstonianum
Blue billygoat weed, 2011, Weeds of Australia, http://keyserver.lucidcentral.org/weeds/data/03030800-0b07-490a-8d04-0605030c0f01/media/Html/Ageratum_houstonianum.htm


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