Thursday, February 24, 2011

Russelia equisetiformis

Russelia equisetiformis is a nearly everblooming shrub with arching green stems and bright red tubular flowers.  The stems remain herbaceous and arch over from the weight of the flowers.  The overall height is usually under three feet. Leaves are tiny and not noticeable.  The one-inch-long flowers appear on the ends of the thread-like stems.
Russelia will grow in sun or part shade.  It is a native of Mexico and is recommended for USDA Zones 9-12.  It likes moist soil but is fairly drought-tolerant once established.
The stems will root where they touch moist soil or mulch, and the plant also appears to spread by underground roots.  Russelia isn't particularly invasive, but it will expand over time to cover a large area if you allow it to roam freely.
Russelia equisetiformis is also sometimes known as Coral Plant, Fountain Plant, or Firecracker Plant.  There are cultivars with yellow, orange, or white flowers, but these are not as common.  The red flowers are attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies.

7 comments:

Carolyn ♥ said...

I can see why hummingbirds would be attracted to them!

Natti said...

These are such lovely flowers. They look like tiny bells and add so much beauty to the garden. I say let them be invasive...:)

FlowerLady said...

I love this plant. I just potted some up in pots to have outside the window where I wash dishes, in hopes of getting some hummingbird photos.

I also have the yellow.

FlowerLady

Giga said...

Tak piękny krzew chciałabym zasadzić w swoim ogródku, ale niestety , to nie ten klimat.Pozdrawiam z Polski

p3chandan said...

I think these lovely red flower plant are called Fire Cracker plant, if Im not mistaken. I have never seen them in other colours.

SiestaSister said...

I love my Fire Crackers. My 2 big ones under the oaks withstood several nights of hard frost. Once you have a couple you don't have to buy any more because you can dig up branches that have rooted. I have not seen any hummingbirds, but have heard that the plant attracts them. Still hoping they will notice the plants and visit my yard.

I have also added a young rooted fire cracker to other potted plants. It adds a nice touch.

This a great, carefree plant.

SiestaSister said...

♥ the Fire Cracker!! Had some blooming all winter. Now they are really taking off. They really are a care-free plant. Even propagating is simple. The branches root on their own. Hope that one day the hummingbirds discover them.

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