In a Vase on Monday – Spiked Tropical Punch

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I finally have some spikes blooming in my garden. Showy panicles or racemes in the classic style are few and far between in Tropic Florida. I love Butterfly Bush and Oakleaf Hydrangeas and all sorts of plants with those flower types, even Lysimachia. None will grow this far south. I found some Tropical Red or Blood Sage (Salvia coccinea) plants, native to coastal sandy soils in the Southeastern US, bought some thinking it should be perfect for my garden.

As these things go sometimes, this widely advertised Tropical Red Salvia is supposed to love dry sandy soils and be drought tolerant. Mine was not feeling that way at all and insisted on water and the addition of some organic matter in the soil before flowering at all. It rained a couple of inches in the past week or so and they shot up these nearly fluorescent red spikes. Yay. Here are the plants:

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Native people of the Florida peninsula used this Sage medicinally for all sorts of ailments, the more widely known herb Sage is Salvia officinalis. A tea made from this plant was the cure for anything from menopause to infections. Given the wide range of its curative powers I am not too sure if would help with what ails me so, I am sticking to our modern pain relievers at this time as I don’t really like the taste of culinary Sage.

Other members of this arrangement are in white, Bridal Bouquet Frangipani (Plumeria pudica), Parrot Flower (Psittacorum) in red and yellow, Beach Sunflowers (Helianthus debilis) in yellow, the burgundy foliage is from “Hallelujah” Bromeliad and a Split Leaf Philodendron (Philodendron selloum) Leaf.

Yes, the Split Leaf Philodendron grows in my Rainforest Garden. With many other house plants without spikey panicles.

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16 comments on “In a Vase on Monday – Spiked Tropical Punch

  1. Love your tropical vase. The red salvia looks similar to Black and Blue Salvia we can grow here. Salvia is one of my best growers, as the rabbits don’t eat it. I will keep an eye out for it.

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    • Thank you, it is native here and I bought it at a going out of business sale from a natives nursery. It was sold as an annual in Atlanta and is supposed to be deer resistant. I have had the Black and Blue and guarantica in Atlanta. The red is supposed to reseed, it is flowering like mad now, I will save some for you if it does!

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  2. I love the contrast of the hot colours with white at the base.

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  3. Cathy says:

    Yes, a definite tropical look. Will the salvia need constant nurturing, do you think? Hope you are not struggling too much, healthwise…

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  4. Eliza Waters says:

    Well, you had me right there with the title – lol! Figures my ears would pop up at that one. 😉
    The salvia really pops (I think it is Salvia coccinea, btw, not. S. officinalis, which is the culinary sage we put in our turkey stuffing). I’m amazed at the purity of plumeria – such a clear white and I expect it smells wonderful. I LOVE the parrot flower!

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  5. Kris P says:

    That parrotflower is wonderful and the other flowers pair with it beautifully. Having just bought some bromeliads at a relatively exorbitant cost (although purportedly discounted by the local bromeliad society), I was initially taken aback by the use of bromeliad leaves in your arrangement but then I reminded myself that you live in bromeliad-land where the plants presumably grow with abandon!

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    • Kris, maybe I should send you some- I agree that prices are exorbitant. I wasn’t going to pay it and looked around especially as there are several hundred thousand varieties of these things and for the most part, bad advice. Oddly enough, there are passalong varieties here that are sold at Master Gardener and garage sales. The gourmet Bromeliad gardeners will send you to the expensive sites, keep looking. I don’t think I have paid more than $8 for any of mine and several were gifts, not to say I know what they are! That doesn’t bother me as I like a surprise every now and then.Which I get, orange flowers, etc.

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  6. Chloris says:

    I love your arrangement Amy. I am very fond of salvias and have quite a collection. I find they need lots of water and feeding to bloom really well. The Parrot flower is spectacular. Sorry to hear you are not in the best of health. Take care.

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  7. And this is another very creative arrangement. The white flowers are surprising and effective.

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