Inactive Plants

 

Here below, in no particular order, are plants that we do not have in stock at the present time.  Rather than erase them from the website completely, we are storing them here with the possibility that we may have some to sell in the future.  In the meantime, feel free to browse through...

 

Bentinck Palm  Bentinckia nicobarica

The Nicobar Islands, claimed as territory by India, are drops of land splattered along the eastern edge of the Bay of Bengal.  From there comes the Bentinck Palm, named after Lord Bentinck, governor of Madras (1803-07).  In the way of interesting historical footnotes, Lord Bentinck distinguished himself by abolishing suttee, the practice of tossing the (still-alive) widow of a deceased man onto his funeral pyre.  He also was instrumental in getting rid of the Thugs, who were ordinary citizens for most of the year, but joined into gangs, and went around robbing and strangling rich people, as part of an annual multi-faith (including devout Muslims and Hindus) event held each autumn.

(source:  http://www.bartleby.com/65/be/BentinckWC.html)

Now that we know he was a man worthy of having such a fine palm named after him, we can appreciate his palm even more.  It is a solitary-growing feather palm, when small preferring the shelter of understory conditions, eventually reaching a height of up to 50 feet or so, to become the upper level of the canopy.  Protect from cooling winds, and make sure it gets adequate water, and it will grow to gracefully dust the sky for you.

Eye-catching trunks gleam with generous affluence in the early morning sun, inspiring you to achieve your best yet another day.

You've got to come on over and see how we've got them planted as "multis" in 10-gal. and 25-gal. containers.

 

 


 

Variegated Pandanus  Pandanus sanderi

Pandanus is a tropical genus of 600 different plants scattered across Africa and Asia.  The variegated one below, P. sanderi, is a classy plant from Malaysia. 

Make sure you give it enough room.  Although it is very slow-growing, it will eventually form a trunk and grow to as tall as 15' high by 8 feet wide.
 

 

 


 

Cracker Rose Rosa sp.

Hardy rose that doesn't seem to need heavy fertilization to produce a lot of flowers in our alkaline soil.  Plant one in a sunny location and the sweet little things will charm you for most of the year. 

 

Look closely at the photo to the left.  It contains the secret of life.  In one cluster, we see flowers developing to maturity and then dying.  

All of existence, including time, is made up of three qualities: becoming, being, and decaying.  In order to maximize your future potential, focus on becoming, rather than being, or decaying.     

 


 

Cafe con Leche  Graptophyllum pictum cv. Bronze Variegatum

Native to the South Pacific and Australia.  In the alkaline soils of South Florida, it needs regular fertilization to look its best.  This is commonly used in deep shade, where it becomes weedy over time.  Let it get enough sun and the colors will be more vibrant, and it will stay full.  Trim it regularly in a natural fashion.

     


 

 

Acalypha  Acalyphya wilkesiana vars.  

Like crotons, there are lots of varieties, sometimes generically referred to as "Copperleaf". 

At right, Match-me-if-you-can.

Below,  Moorea

Above, Java White 

Left,  Peach

   

 


 

Chonemorpha fragrans
 

Chonemorpha  Chonemorpha fragrans 

This is a stunning vine, flowering profusely from May - July; one of the powerful lianas of the Indian and Malayan forests, climbing to the tops of the tallest trees. It represents just a part of the great variety of unusual tropical plants that we have. 

 

 


 

 

Dahoon Holly  Ilex cassine

We do not have any in stock now, but you can read about them anyway.

As far as natives go, dahoon holly is one of the more commonly used small trees (typical mature height of 30 feet or so).  Their native territory is throughout the southeastern U.S., and the Caribbean islands.  They prefer to be on the edge of wet areas, but can be used anywhere, with sporadic watering.  

You often see them planted at the edge of drainage areas behind newer gas stations.  Look for them the next time you fill up.  

Dahoon holly is one of those sophisticated plants with both male and female flowers.  Above left, the male (staminate) flowers hang in profuse clusters.  Above right, a close-up of the tiny flowers.  

Pollinators scramble frantically around and through, like winners of a three-minute shopping spree.  They shout out things like, "Hey, here's some nectar...here's some more over here, and here...and here!  Whew!  I'm getting woozy...".   

In the process, they get themselves fairly covered with pollen hanging from sacs above the nectar.  The pollen grains stick to their bodies, and in a similar future feeding frenzy, they will rub or fall off onto the female flower.  Doesn't this sound slightly implausible to you?  

It seems to work, though.  At left is a group of female (pistulate) flowers developing into berries

The fruits hang in clusters, each one developed from a pollinated flower.  

  This cluster looks like a little alien soldier, with a big heart.

While the fruits are not tasty to humans, birds like them.  Remember, birds aren't allowed in supermarkets (well, okay, yes, it's true that birds with money can go in).

 


Jamaica Rain Tree  Brya ebenus

This is a tough, spiny tree with an erupting growth habit.  New branches burst straight up as if ejected by a volcano, cascading onto the countryside below as they become longer and heavier.  

Mature height is 30 feet, but it's easy to keep under 15' with annual pruning.  Flowers in times of high humidity, which means for a good part of the year here in South Florida.  Picture one of these flowing over your wall into your courtyard.  Stunning!  

 

 


 

Spiral Gingers  Costus speciosus  

When the weather is tropical, our equatorial plant friends burst out with sweet florid displays.

Can be used alone, or as part of a tropical mix, under 10' high.

Delicate crepe flowers show up to celebrate your kids being out of school for the summer.  

C. speciosus Variegatus

Interesting form, with dependable, yet striking, colors through variegation.  

 


Dracaenas  Dracaena reflexa

Since we're on the subject of variegation, these two shrubby cultivars give it to you in distinctive ways.   

Members of the Agave family, there are more than forty species of dracaenas found throughout tropical Africa and Asia.

Dracaenas, in general, have a bamboo-type look (the plant marketed as "lucky bamboo" is really a dracaena), but will not grow to panda-sustaining massiveness.  They are typically quite hardy, which accounts for their popularity.  You can usually find a dracaena to fit in just about any spot from roof-top garden to cabinet under the kitchen sink.

Plant one in a well-drained location.  While they can take a wide variety of light conditions, they look their best in partially sunny spots, getting up to 12 feet high after a few years. 

 

Honoriae  

Song-of-India

 

 


Bird's Nest Anthurium  Anthurium cubense

The native territory of this big-leafed tropical baby is the Caribbean and South America.  

If you are from Virginia and miss the look of tobacco plants, this one is for you. Don't try smoking the leaves, though; nothing will happen.  

 

The seed pods look like they are visitors from another galaxy, but fear not, they are just seed pods. 

 

 

 


 

 

Windowpane Palm  Beccariophoenix madagascariensis

Rare palm from Madagascar, prized for young leaflets, which are used in making hats, and edible palm hearts.  Its status in the wild was critical ten years ago; not sure how well it's faring nowadays.  It may be collectors like you that keep it alive for future generations to appreciate...

 


 

Angel's Trumpet Brugmansia x candida  Shrubby tree to 15 feet in height.  Hybrid of two plants of the genus, one from the mountains of Ecuador, and the other from lower-lying valleys.  It is now ubiquitous throughout the tropical and subtropical worlds, being planted just about everywhere it has a chance of surviving.
 

It reminds you of that time you spent in Marseille, in the south of France, in that little cottage not too far from the coast.  You were oh, so young, and full of dreams, and the angel's trumpets were in full bloom. Their fragrance carried romance on the gentle evening breezes.   

 

 


 

Tahiti Gardenia Gardenia taitensis

This tropical shrub, indigenous to the South Pacific, can be kept as a shrub or pruned into a small tree, reaching a height of up to 20 feet tall.  It has glossy dark green leaves, and splendidly fragrant white flowers that appear  regularly throughout the year.  

Plant one in a slightly shaded spot, protected from cold winds..

The fragrance of the flowers is dependably heavenly, especially in the evenings.  

We have some nice ones available now in 3-gal. and 7-gal. pots.

In Tahiti, this plant is called Tiare. The flowers are used in perfumes.  There is a flavor of  ice cream.  The ice cream tastes like the flowers smell, not like the flowers taste (take my word for it).

Tahiti gardenia is the national flower of Tahiti and has its own holiday.  The flowers are a very important part of daily life.

 


 

Assorted Alocasias

At right is Alocasia plumbea, Metalica.

Below, left, Guinea Gold, about 3' high, in 7-gal.  

Below right, Borneo Giant, 6' high in 10-gal.

 

No Asian landscape was considered complete without the addition of one or more of these fine, fruiting ornamental shade trees. 

They were prominently used as accents in dooryards, or to turn a sunny corner into a shady spot suitable for relaxing, sipping sweet jasmine tea and reading scrolls of poetry to your sweetie on a hot summer afternoon.  

Longans  Dimocarpus longan  

The longan season is declared open in mid-July, with the picking of not-quite-ripe fruit by people who just can't wait any longer.  The season continues through August.

'Elian'  is a handsome tree, with lacy, light green foliage.  The medium-sized fruits are the color of gold.

'Big Boy' was developed right here in South Florida.  It bears large fruits, with large seeds, generally towards end of the longan season.

'Kohala' from the slopes of the Hawaiian islands, becomes a strikingly beautiful tree with deep green foliage.  One of the more commonly used varieties bearing consistently heavy loads of sweet fruits. 

 


 

Lychees  Litchi chinensis  

Lychees produce fruit May through July.

'Groff', with fruit ripening in mid-July, is perhaps the latest bearing lychee variety available in Florida.  Fruits are small, but with small unfertilized seeds (known as "chicken tongues").  The flavor is slightly tart.

 

'Haak Ip'  is a vigorous variety, also known as "Blackleaf."  Fruit production is light, but consistent, with dark red, large, heart-shaped fruits.  This one is known for its excellent flavor. It has small seeds, like the one above.

'Wai Chee' forms a small, spreading tree that generally bears fruit in mid-July, with inconsistent yields.  Fruits are small, with an excellent flavor.  
 

 


 

 

Jakfruit  Artocarpus heterophylla is an inhabitant of regions of India and Malaysia. It grows fairly quickly into a stunning, columnar tree, with huge tawny fruits, which can weigh more than 40 lbs.  The tree in the photo at right, is planted here at the nursery and is about 25 feet, or so, high.

At left is a typical example of one in a 45-gal. pot, about 10'-12' ht.

 


 

Clerodendrum wallichii

Clerodendrum is a genus consisting of 200 tropical trees, shrubs and vines, primarily from Southeast Asia.  General characteristics include showy flowers and fruits, and a lack of tolerance to cold.

C. wallichii reaches a height of around 10 feet.  You may plant one in sun or shade, but not in spots that are exposed to temperature extremes (not too cool, not too hot).  Keep it out of the wind, and avoid putting it where it will get late afternoon sun.

Cascades of flowers appear around Thanksgiving.
 

Typical size is 7-gal., about 4' feet high.

 

 


 

Spanish Shawl   Heterocentron elegans

Low-growing groundcover (generally under 15" high).  Prefers well-drained conditions in slightly shady spots.  Does not like hot, late afternoon direct sun.  If you get it in the right spot, it will fill in the entire bed, overwhelming other less-competitive plants.

 


Verawood  Bulnesia arborea

The legend goes that Chief Lignum Vitae had a daughter named Vera, which means "Faithful" or "True".  

She lived along the Caribbean coast in what is now Colombia and Venezuela.

Vera loved the outdoors and spent most of her time laughing and singing in the forests.

Men who heard her singing fell in love with her, and came searching for.  

She hid in the forest, but they found her and pleaded with her to at least sing for them, even if she wouldn't consider marrying them.

She obliged them by singing beautifully, and  continues to make music right to this day.

Verawood typically gets to 40 feet or so, and makes a nice canopy tree.  Prefers well-drained locations.

We (used to)  have some in 25-gal., about 8' high.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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Last updated:  12/20/2011