Sunday, August 13, 2006

Mirabilis Jalapa


I’ve grown Mirabilis jalapa (Beauty of the Night or The 4 o’clock Flower) for the first time this year and it’s recently started flowering. I’ve been a bit disappointed so far as it’s a tall plant with quite small flowers, and they’ve been coming out one at a time. It only blooms in the evening, and the flowers only last one night, so one or two per evening are not very impressive. However, yesterday it did this – different coloured flowers on the same plant! I checked and it’s quite common with this type of plant, but I hadn’t realised it was possible – does anyone know of any other flower which does the same?

I’ve got six plants all together, and they’re now a mass of buds, so I guess they’ll come out in force in the next couple of weeks – a pity, as I’ll be on holiday and will miss them. The holiday also means I won’t be blogging for a while, so I thought I’d leave you with this … the photo below is a selection of some of the seedlings I’m bringing on at the moment. Can you recognise them? I have to admit I have a sneaky reason for asking – there’s one which I don’t know the name of, though I know what the plant and flowers eventually look like. If anyone can identify it, I’ll be really pleased.

2 comments:

john curtin said...

Sue,
Found you through She Who Digs. This is interesting as we may be moving from our London home which has a garden to one where at most I'll have a patio or roof terrace so I'm interested to see your veg growing as well!

But I guess the Milanese climate is a whole lot kinder than here - though a bit hotter I'm sure

Sazji said...

Don't give up on Mirabilis jalapa too quickly! There are actually a couple of varieties. The small-flowered one is all over our city on parking strips, in planter boxes, you name it. But there is a larger-flowered variety as well, some of the variants have beautiful speckled flowers. If you can't find it here I can send you some seed.

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