The rules for posting are simple!

1. Every Friday post a photo that includes one or more flowers.
2. Please only post photos you have authority to use.
3. Include a link to this blog in your post - http://floralfridayfoto.blogspot.com/
4. Leave the link to your FloralFridayFoto post below on inlinkz.
5. Visit other blogs listed ... comment & enjoy!

When to Post:
inlinkz will be available every Thursday and will remain open until the next Wednesday.

Thursday, 29 June 2017

FFF292 - RED CHRYSANTHEMUM

Although once referred to as Dendranthema, the florists chrysanthemum is now correctly known under its old name. There are about 40 species in the genus Chrysanthemum, mainly from East Asia. In China, where they have been cultivated for over 2,500 years, the chrysanthemum was used medicinally and for flavouring, as well as for ornament. All chrysanthemum flowers are edible, but the flavour varies widely from plant to plant, from sweet to tangy to bitter or peppery. It may take some experimentation to find flavours you like. The flower is also significant in Japan where it is a symbol of happiness and longevity, and the royal family has ruled for 2,600 years from the Chrysanthemum Throne.

Shown here is one of the Mammoth™ Series of chrysanthemums.  Developed in Minnesota, these plants result from crosses between C. x morifolium hybrids and the very hardy C. weyrichii. This results in tall, almost shrubby plants with single to semi-double flowers, interesting for the middle or even the back of the flowerbed. Do note though that these plants grow slowly, only gaining their final dimensions of about 110 cm x 150 cm in their third year. This series includes the full range of chrysanthemum colours. The Mammoth™ series was originally launched under the name 'My Favorite' and you may still see some of these plants sold under their former name.

This is the Mammoth™ ‘Red Daisy’ (formerly My Favorite™ ‘Autumn Red’.): Semi-double red with a yellow centre. It is making quite a show still in early Winter here in Melbourne. Heroic pruning keeps the plant neat and will ensure repeat blooming in a compact bushy plant. Chrysanthmums prefer full sun and become a bit thin even in light shade. Any garden soil is acceptable, but they prefer a rich, well-drained, slightly acid soil. Add compost or all-purpose fertiliser regularly as chrysanthemums are rather heavy feeders! Chrysanthemums have shallow root systems and won’t tolerate prolonged drought. From Spring right until Autumn, water thoroughly whenever the soil is dry to the touch. Divide in spring or take cuttings in early summer. Their seeds germinate readily, but are not true to type.

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Thursday, 22 June 2017

FFF291 - EURYOPS

Euryops chrysanthemoides (with the common names African bush daisy or bull's-eye) is a small shrub native to Southern Africa that is also grown as a horticultural specimen in tropical to subtropical regions around the world. It occurs in the Eastern Cape, along the coast and inland, to KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga and Swaziland.

It is usually found on forest edges, in riverine bush and in ravines, as well as in coastal scrub, grassland and disturbed areas. It is a compact, densely branched, leafy, evergreen shrub, 0.5 to 2m in height.

The species was moved to Euryops from the genus Gamolepis on the basis of chromosome counts. It is a ruderal weed in New South Wales, although it is not weedy in all places where it is cultivated or has naturalised. This particular variety is Euryops chrysanthemoides 'African Sun'. As you can see it is blooming profusely in our Winter here in Melbourne.

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Thursday, 15 June 2017

FFF290 - NEMESIA

Nemesia is a genus of annuals, perennials and sub-shrubs which are native to sandy coasts or disturbed ground in South Africa. Numerous hybrids have been selected, and the annual cultivars are popular with gardeners as bedding plants. In temperate regions the annual cultivars are usually treated as half-hardy bedding plants, sown from seed in heat and planted out after all danger of frost has passed.

The flowers are two-lipped, with the upper lip consisting of four lobes and the lower lip two lobes. The cultivar 'Innocence', a low-growing bushy perennial with white flowers, has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. The cultivar shown here is 'Sunsatia Banana', which is a popular ornamental hybrid.

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Thursday, 8 June 2017

FFF289 - CHICKWEED

Stellaria media, chickweed, of the Caryophyllaceae family is a cool-season annual plant native to Europe, but naturalised in many parts of North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. It is used as a cooling herbal remedy, and grown as a vegetable crop and ground cover for both human consumption and poultry. It is sometimes called common chickweed to distinguish it from other plants called chickweed. Other common names include chickenwort, craches, maruns, winterweed. The plant germinates in autumn or late winter, then forms large mats of foliage.

The plants are annual and with weak slender stems, they reach a length up to 40 cm. Sparsely hairy, with hairs in a line along the stem. The leaves are oval and opposite, the lower ones with stalks. Flowers are white and tiny, with 5 very deeply lobed petals. The stamens are usually 3 and the styles 3. The flowers are followed quickly by the seed pods. This plant flowers and sets seed at the same time. This plant is common in gardens, fields, and disturbed ground as a weed. Control is difficult due to the heavy seed sets. Common chickweed is very competitive with small grains, and can produce up to 80% yield losses among barley.

Stellaria media is edible and nutritious for humans, and is used as a leaf vegetable, often raw in salads. It is one of the ingredients of the symbolic dish consumed in the Japanese spring-time festival, Nanakusa-no-sekkuS. media contains plant chemicals known as saponins, which can be toxic when consumed in large quantities. Chickweed has been known to cause saponin poisoning in cattle. However, as the animal must consume several kilos of chickweed in order to reach a toxic level, such deaths are rare.

The plant has traditionally been used medicinally in folk medicine. It has been used as a remedy to treat itchy skin conditions and pulmonary diseases. 17th century herbalist John Gerard recommended it as a remedy for mange. Modern herbalists prescribe it for iron-deficiency anaemia (for its high iron content), as well as for skin diseases, bronchitis, rheumatic pains, arthritis and period pain. Not all of these uses are supported by scientific evidence. The plant was used by the Ainu for treating bruises and aching bones. Stems were steeped in hot water before being applied externally to affected areas.

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Thursday, 1 June 2017

FFF288 - CORREA 'DUSKY BELLS'

Correa ‘ Dusky Bells ’ belongs to the Rutaceae family which includes the commercial citrus fruits. The Australian endemic genus Correa is a small group within this family. The genus Correa is named after the Portuguese botanist Correia de Serra. Correa ‘ Dusky Bells ’ is a probable hybrid of C. reflexa and C. pulchella. It is thought that it may have been cultivated for at least 50 years. In 1986, its registration with Australian Cultivar Registration Authority (ACRA) was applied for by W. R. and G. M. Elliott, though the cultivar was received by the authority in 1980. Its synonyms are: Correa ‘Pink Bells’, Correa ‘Carmine Bells’, Correa ‘Rubra’ and Correa sp. (Pink).

Correa reflexa, a parent species of Correa ‘Dusky Bells’, ranges from southern Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, eastern South Australia and Tasmania. Correa pulchella is pretty much restricted to South Australia. Both of the parent species are mostly distributed in temperate regions. Therefore, it can be inferred that Correa ‘Dusky Bells’ is not likely to grow well in the hot tropics such as northern Queensland.

It is an attractive evergreen shrub which grows to 1m high and to 2-4 m in diameter. The entire plant is stellate hairy. Leaves have stellate hairs and the older leaves lose hairs. The leaves are to 4.5 cm long, and 2.5 cm wide; narrow oval (elliptic) or lance-shaped (lanceolate) to egg-shaped leaf (ovate). The beautiful bell-shaped flowers are up to 2.5cm long. The four fused petals are pale carmine pink.

Hybrid Correas have a tendency to be more compact and heavy flowering than the wild species, which makes them a desirable gardening plant. Correa ‘Dusky Bells’ is drought and frost tolerant. It is great for a shaded environment. It prefers somewhat shady situations rather than full sun. It also attracts birds to the gardens. Many of the Correa species are pollinated by birds such as honey eaters as it normally has a lot of nectar. Flowering time is from March to September. However, it also flowers sporadically displaying its lovely bell-shaped flowers throughout a year.

In general, growing Correa ’Dusky Bells’ is easy. It prefers moist soil, though it is drought tolerant. It grows wells on friable, well-drained and fertile loam. Propagation of this plant is possible by cutting. If it grows tall or wide, you can prune the plant. Regular pruning is good for the plant. It is best to avoid humid areas. Scale infestation of Correa due to insidious black smut was reported, but it is not common. Correa ‘Dusky Bells’ is an excellent evergreen garden plant. It is easy-to-grow, drought and frost tolerant and beautiful.


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Thursday, 25 May 2017

FFF287 - ROSE CONE FLOWER

Isopogon formosus, or Rose Cone Flower, in the Proteaceae family is a shrub that is endemic to areas near Albany and Esperance in Western Australia. It occurs naturally in heathland and woodland areas. It has an erect or bushy form and is usually between 1.5 and 2 metres high. The pink flowers appear from mid winter to early summer. Rounded "drumsticks" containing the seeds appear later, formed from the old flower parts.

The plants leaves are divided, narrow, terete and about 5 cm long. It was first described by Robert Brown in 1810. In 1891, German botanist Otto Kuntze published Revisio generum plantarum, his response to what he perceived as a lack of method in existing nomenclatural practice. Because Isopogon was based on Isopogon anemonifolius, and that species had already been placed by Richard Salisbury in the segregate genus Atylus in 1807, Kuntze revived the latter genus on the grounds of priority, and made the new combination Atylus formosus for this species. However, Kuntze's revisionary program was not accepted by the majority of botanists. Ultimately, the genus Isopogon was nomenclaturally conserved over Atylus by the International Botanical Congress of 1905.

Isopogon formosus requires excellent drainage and full sun. It will not tolerate long periods of dryness or heavy frost. It is usually propagated from seed which germinates readily without pretreatment. Cuttings are also successful using firm, current season's growth. Some limited work has been carried out by enthusiasts on the grafting of western species of Isopogon, onto eastern rootstocks to extend the range where the plants can be grown. This offers the best chance for successful cultivation in humid areas.

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Thursday, 18 May 2017

FFF286 - "PANSY ORCHID"

Miltonia, abbreviated Milt. in the horticultural trade, is an orchid genus formed by nine epiphyte species and eight natural hybrids inhabitants of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest, one species reaching the northeast of Argentina and east of Paraguay. This genus was established by John Lindley in 1837, when he described its type species, Miltonia spectabilis.

Many species were attributed to Miltonia in the past, however, today, the species from Central America and from cooler areas on northwest of South America have been moved to other genera. Miltonia species have large and long lasting flowers, often in multifloral inflorescences. This fact, allied to being species that are easy to grow and to identify, make them a favourite of orchid collectors all over the world. Species of this genus are extensively used to produce artificial hybrids.

Despite the fact that Miltonia is now a well established genus, most of its species were originally classified under other genera as Cyrtochilum, Oncidium, Odontoglossum, and Brassia. All were discovered between 1834 and 1850 with the exception of M. kayasimae, discovered only in 1976. These epiphytic orchids occur from Central to Southern Brazil down to Argentina. They are named after Charles Wentworth-Fitzwilliam, 5th Earl Fitzwilliam, formerly Viscount Milton, an English orchid enthusiast.

These orchids have two leaves, arising from a pseudobulbs, covered with a foliaceous sheath. The inflorescence consists of waxy, nonspurred flowers. The lip is large and flat and lacks a callus at its base. They possess a footless column with two hard pollinia. The flowers have a delicate, exotic scent, some compare to that of roses. The species in this genus are sometimes referred to as the "pansy orchids", but it is the Miltoniopsis orchids that have flowers that closely resemble the pansy. Almost everyone except for the most serious orchid hobbyists use the name pansy orchids interchangeably, which may cause confusion.

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