White, pink, red
The cyclamen is one of the most spread houseplants, especially because it has its beautiful flowers during the winter, thus brightening up the cold periods. It belongs to the family Primulaceae and it includes different species originating from the east area of the Mediterranean. During the whole cultivation period it’s important to have a wet weather, with temperatures not higher than 15°.
It is a plant that comes from far away: it originates from Australia but it well suits to our mediterranean weather. The Grevillea belongs to the family Proteaceae, it blooms during the spring and it has flowers with a long calyx that develop into colored curls from which small flexed stomata and a single pistil emerge. There are several species of Grevillea, some can also be cultivated in coastal areas as they can withstand sea salt. In most species the flowers are very nectariferous so they are excellent plants for attracting insects and birds.
It belongs to the family Loganiaceae and it originates from Central and North America (it is the national flower of the South Carolina in the Usa). The Gelsemium is a climbing and evergreen plant, very rustic and resistant. It has narrow and elongated light green leaves and it produces little funnel-shaped flowers, yellow and scented. Due to its appearance and fragrance it vaguely recalls jasmine so that it is also known as “yellow jasmine”.
The gardenia is a plant originating from Asia and the tropical regions of the Southern Africa belonging to the family Rubiaceae. It is an evergreen ornamental plant, symbolizing elegance thanks to its thick and bright green foliage and the candid white flowers with a velvety texture and a very sweet scent.
It is a small perennial plant, cultivated as an annual plant. The Verbena belongs to the family Verbenaceae and it originates from Central and South America and from Europe. It has hanging shape and long branches. The light green leaves are small, oval, sharp, dentate and with marked veins. It produces small and strongly perfumed flowers, variously colored, from white to pink, red, purple and speckled bicolor. The flowers are collected in spikes at the end of the branches. According to the tradition it is a holy plant and it has curative, analgesic and healing properties.
It is a small shrub with shiny green foliage. If it is rubbed it releases a strong citrusy fragrance. It shows an elegant foliage during the spring and the summer. In September it is filled with bunches with small pink fruits and later, in autumn, its foliage turns yellow. It withstands both the great summer heat and peaks of cold up to about -5 ° C. It should be exposed to full sun but it can also stay in partially shaded places. The ground should be neutral, fertile and well drained because it doesn’t withstand water stagnation.
It is known in different regions with different names: in Italian it is called porcellana, procaccia, purselana (Liguria), erba grassa (Lombardia), barzellana (Sardegna). In ancient Egypt it was already known as medical plant. It probably originates from Asia. It has reddish, fleshy, very branched stems and a prostrate shape which makes it an excellent groundcover plant: from June until the first autumn cold numerous rose-shaped flowers bloom on the apex of the branches, with wrinkled looking petals that close in the dark. It needs sun and regular watering.