Friday, January 23, 2009

pretty flowers in your hair?

these pretty flowers all belong to the same species. you do find some of them growing in the wild. i have seen them growing at the edges of some secondary forests. but those in the pictures above were planted by the people from nparks. the place where they are planted is not open to the public yet.

the flowers change colour as they mature. so on the inflorescences, you may see florets of two or more colours.

the berries of this plant are edible when ripe though like many fruit are mildly poisonous if eaten while still green.

the spread of this plant is aided by the characteristic of the leaves, which are somewhat poisonous to most animals, while the fruit is a delicacy for many birds which help in distributing the seeds.

the common names for this plant are shrub verbenas or lantanas. these flowers are pretty but i do not think any pretty maiden will wear them in her hair. most people dislike the smell of lantana flowers, but the foliage is quite fragrant, smelling, in fact, like citrus. the malay name for this plant is bunga tahi ayam (chicken's droppings).

yesterday (25 jan 09), i drove to keppel island. while driving across the cable-stayed bridge, i discovered that one side of the road was lined with these beautiful flowering plants.


nah said...

One of the very first plants I remember growing was the lantana. Lantana is a common landscape plant requiring very low maintenance. Very easy to grow, very vigorous, very pretty flowers, one of the very best butterfly plants, an instant shrub requiring little water.
Lantana is pretty invasive, tends to outgrow their allotted space, and needs a lot of pruning to keep the stems from spreading widely.

yg said...

mr nah, yesterday, i went to check out the lantanas that grow in the wild at dairy farm. there is a difference between those that are planted and those growing in the wild. the inflorescences of those found in the wild are as big and their florets are not so colourful.