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MEDITERRANEAN OUTDOOR PLANTS

The Mimosa originates from the Australian continent; in Italy they well withstand the central-southern temperate climate and it is possible to cultivate it on the big lakes’ coasts in the north where it can benefit of milder temperatures. The ideal soil for blooming is slightly acidic, with a good structure, that ensures a good humidity and, at the same time, a good drainage. It is recommended to add organic matter (humus) periodically (once a year); in the colder areas it can be cultivated in greenhouse with the foresight not to drop the temperature below 0 degrees.

It belongs to the family Nyctaginaceae, originating from the tropical zones of the South America. It is a climbing shrub, sarmentose and thorny, evergreen, with small tubular white or yellow, subtended by three large bracts of typically pink / fuchsia color (there are, however, many varieties of different other colors, from white, to yellow, to red, up to deep purple). In order to facilitate its blooming it is necessary full sunlight; shady locations will instead favor vigorous foliage growth. They fear intense frosts.

It belongs to the family Rutaceae, originating from South- East Asia. It is an evergreen plant with white scented flowers with decorative orange and round fruits. It prefers sunny places and frequent watering: the fruits of the ornamental plants aren’t edible.

The Callistemon belongs to the family Myrtaceae and it is an evergreen shrub originating from Australia and New Caledonia. It has light green, thin, elongated and at the end of the branches it produces the characteristic red flower in the shape of spike or bottle brush (actually, the little flowers are very small and the only fleshy part) and from here the name of the plant “little broom”.

The Carissa macrocarpa (or grandiflora) belongs to the family Apocynaceae and it originates from the sub-tropical regions of South Africa. For this reason it is also known as Natal Plum (from the name of an African region). It is an evergreen thorny shrub that produces oval, fleshy and bright green leaves and beautiful, white, star-shaped and scented flowers. Like all the plants in its family the Carissa is poisonous but it generates fruits that have the shape of small red eggs that, once ripe, are perfectly edible.

It includes seventy five varieties. A common feature is the almost total absence of leaves: however, they tend to fall completely once the first flowers appear. It blooms from May to August. Basically the Broom is a mediterranean plant so the warm and sunny weather is fundamental for its growth: it normally lives in very arid areas and it does not need a lot of water. If the plant has been planted in the ground it is possible to water it sporadically. If, instead, it has been planted in a pot, it is better to water it more regularly.

It belongs to the family Convolvulaceae. It originates from the mediterranean regions and it is a evergreen and compact shrub (and not a climbing plant like the majority of the Convolvolus), with the leaves covered with down that gives it a silvery appearance. It produces a large number of “trumpet” flowers, enlarged (about 3-4 cm in diameter), of a pure white color.

It belongs to the family Fabaceae, it originates from Northen Africa, Southern Europe and Asia. The Citysus Racemosus is a hybrid evergreen shrub with trifoliate and light green leaves and fragrant flowers of bright yellow color, collected in terminal racemes. Ideal for decorating rocky gardens and for borders or for dividing hedges.

It belongs to the family Apocynaceae and it originates from central and south America regions. The Dipladenia is an evergreen climbing plant with smooth, oval and bright green leaves. It produces many trumpet-shaped flowers with five flaps, red, pink and white with the yellow pastel inside part, gathered in racemes. Thanks to its extraordinary flexibility and speed of vegetation it perfectly conforms to the most original ornamental habitats (pyramidal, espalier, double arch, etc.).

The Drosanthemum, known as the popular name “Juppiter’s Beard”, is a succulent plant with groundcover shape belonging to the family Aizoaceae and originating from South Africa. It produces small and light green leaves covered by down (probably that’s the origin of the popular nickname) and many little small daisy-shaped and pink flowers that cover the whole plant. Due to its particularly abundant flowering it is ideal for borders.

The Echium Fastuosum is a rustic plant that is cultivated for ornamental purposes in the garden s and in the pots for its beautiful blooming. The sterns higher than a meter are herbaceous and, after 3 years, they become woody; they are covered by oval, elongated and punctuated leaves that are covered by a thick silver-white down. The blooming is during the spring/ summer and it gives spectacular flowers even in pot cultivations. In order to flourish abundantly it requires bright and sunny exposures in areas preferably sheltered from the wind. it is necessary to water the plants only when the soil is perfectly dry, avoiding excess water and without wetting the leaves.

It belongs to the family Myoporaceae and it originates from South Australia. The Eremophila Nivea is an evergreen shrub with scented, velvety and silver leaves (covered by a thin down). It has an elegant appearance in contrast to the lilac / purple tubular flowers.