Family: Mimosoideae / Mimosaceae Mangium Wattle, Black Wattle, Hickory Wattle Acacia mangium is a single-stemmed evergreen tree or shrub that grows to 25-35 m…
Acalypha nuda red Copper Leaf, Beefsteak Plant, Fire dragon, Jacobs coat
A very colorful tropical shrub grown for its attractive reddish leaves. Beautiful foliage of mixed shades of red, yellow and green. Leaves, much smaller than ordinary copperleafs, are orange/red in the full sun and mostly variegated/green in the shade. The more sun the more color the leaves will get. Fast growing. A native of the East Indies and the Pacific, this is one of the most striking foliage shrubs and is widely used by tropical gardeners. Cultivars of A. godseffiana are found in a wide variety of colors: green and white, green and yellow, red, bronze, copper, or brown. The leaves also vary in form, some being flat and others undulating, while the flowers are inconspicuous. In a garden, where they are often used as informal hedges or in massed beds, all Acalypha species require full sun, well-drained soil, and careful pruning to prevent them from becoming leggy. They are easily propagated by cuttings.
Ficus acokanthera , Bushman’s Poison, Wintersweet
This shrub is one of three members of the genus, Acokanthera. It belongs to the same family as many popular subtropical ornamental plants such as frangipani, allamanda and oleander, as well as the impala lily and num-num. This family is characterized by having sweetly scented flowers and sticky, milky sap which is very poisonous. The Bushman’s poison is a hardy drought. It’s a frost resistant, evergreen shrub that tolerates full sun but prefers shade, it also does well as a container plant.
Variegated slender sweet flag , Mondo variegate
This miniature, semi-evergreen Japanese plant is best grown in a special basket for water plants, being gently placed in shallow water at the edge of a pond, or directly in the soil in a bog garden. It then sends up fans of compact leaves with cream and yellow stripes.Snip or clear away any leaves which have died down in the autumn, when it goes dormant, to prevent any silting up. When the plant threatens to spill out of its container, split the rhizome, potting each section in its own basket.
Baobab, Cream of Tartar tree, Monkey-bread tree, Lemonade tree
Regarded as the largest succulent in the world, the baobab tree is steeped in a wealth of mystique, legend and superstition wherever it occurs in Africa. It is a tree that can provide food, water, shelter, and relief from sickness. During drought, elephants obtain moisture by chewing on the wood. The stem is covered with a bark layer, which may be 50-100 mm thick. The leaves are hand-sized and divided into 5-7 finger-like leaflets. The baobab is a deciduous, meaning that in winter, it sheds all of its leaves and grows new ones in spring. The large, pendulous flowers (up to 200 mm in diameter) are white and sweetly scented ,that are pollinated by bats. They are followed by velvety fruits full of edible acidic pulp sought by both monkeys and people. In the dryer, temperate regions of Africa, Baobabs are a tree of myth and legend. Baobabs are carefully tended by rural peoples and are particularly useful: the hollow trunks of baobabs are used as dwellings and storehouses, traditional medicines are obtained from its bark, leaves, and fruit. Its bark can be pounded to produce fibers that are used to make baskets, cloth, hats, mats, nets, rope, and strings (interestingly, after the bark is stripped away, the baobab grows new bark). Its leaves are cooked and eaten as greens, and are dried for use as a seasoning and a sauce and stew thickener. Its fruit is rich in vitamin C, calcium, and iron, and is called pain de singe or monkey bread. It can be roasted, ground, and boiled to make a coffee-substitute; it is also soaked in water to make a refreshing drink, and is used as a flavoring. They will make a handsome addition to a large garden, estate, or large parkland providing the soil is not waterlogged. Baobabs cannot tolerate even mild frost. When they are young, baobabs do not resemble their adult counterparts, the stems are thin and inconspicuous, and their leaves are simple and not divided into the five to seven lobes of the adult trees. Saplings can be effectively grown in containers or tubs for many years before becoming too large and requiring to be planted into the ground.
Red Sandalwood, Coral Bean Tree, Saga , Sagaseed Tree, Red-bead Tree, Raktakambal, Kokriki
A medium-sized tree up to 15 m high, Adenanthera pavonina is native to India and Malaysia. It has been planted extensively throughout the tropics as an ornamental and has become naturalized in many countries.
The tiny flowers are said to smell vaguely like orange blossoms.
The slender flattened pods become twisted as they split open at maturity to release up to 12 brilliant red, lens – shaped, extremely hard seeds. The ripened pods stay on the tree for some time. The seeds are used in necklaces and ornaments, as beads in jewellery, leis and rosaries. They were also used in ancient India for weighing gold. The seeds are curiously similar in weight. Four seeds make up about one gramme. In fact the name “saga” is traced to the Arabic term for “goldsmith”.
In Malaysia and Indonesia, the trees provide shade and planted as “nurse trees” in coffee, clove and rubber plantations.
Although the raw seeds are toxic, when cooked they are edible: are roasted, shelled and then eaten with rice in Java, Indonesia. In Melanesia and Polynesia people call it the “food tree”. The seeds are said to taste like soy bean. The young leaves can be cooked and eaten, but usually only during famine.
The hard reddish wood of the red sandalwood tree is used for cabinet making. A red dye, obtained from the wood, is used by Brahmins to mark religious symbols on their foreheads. A red powder made from the wood is used as an antiseptic paste. In Ancient Indian medicine, the ground seeds are used to treat boils and inflammations. A decoction of the leaves is used to treat gout and rheumatism. The bark was used to wash hair
Origin: Central and South America
Adiantum is a genus of about 200 species of ferns in the family Pteridaceae, though some researchers place it in its own family, Adiantaceae.
Adiantum has slender black stems and delicate, triangular green fronds.
The plant likes higher humidity but should not be misted.
Origin: tropical Asia and Africa
They are grown for their ornamental foliage in homes, greenhouses, and in the outdoors, where climates allow.
These plants should have a moist, but well drained, heavy soil. It will live for long periods in water and in spots with poor light; though bright, indirect sunlight or partial shade is best. Water moderately and maintain a fairly humid atmosphere. Keep them drier throughout the winter.
Family: Mimosoideae / Mimosaceae
Womans tongue, Siris-tree, Rain tree, East Indian walnut, Kokko, Soros-tree, Raom tree
Origin: India, Burma and the Andaman Island
Albizia lebbeck, Mimosa lebbeck is a fast-growing tree, that is susceptible to wind damage. A moderate to large, deciduous tree can grow up to 100 feet high in rain forests. The tree develops a straight trunk when it is grown in dense forests, but is spreading and low branching in the open. Unless trimmed frequently,the trees will annually produce an abundance of seed from papery pods about 8″ long and 1″ wide (author). Common names such as “woman’s tongue” and “rattle pod” derive from the noise of pods shaking in the wind. The foliage is pale green when young and gray-green at maturity. Flowers are cream colored, hemispheric pom-poms. Seeds germinate well without scarification, but germination may be improved by immersing seed in boiling water for 3 seconds and then allowing it to cool and dry. Research has shown that seeds will germinate more readily if the seed coat is disrupted. This should be accomplished by either soaking the seeds in boiling water for three minutes followed by soaking in tap water for 24 hours or by soaking in tap water for 6 hours. The seeds should be sown at a depth of 1″. If necessary seeds should be inoculated with a rhizobium isolated from nodules taken from a mature A. lebbeck tree. Direct sowing is possible, but rows must be well-weeded for a few years. Another method is to raise seedlings in nursery beds for one year or more and then transplant them as stumps with about 9″ root and 5″ shoot. This would considerably reduce the field establishment period. The tree is used as a folk remedy for many ailments. Another common use is as an avenue tree, and sometimes it is used to shade coffee and tea. Saponins and tannins in the bark can be used for making soap and in tanning, respectively. Bee keepers like the species for the light-colored honey its nectar provides, and the tree hosts the lac insect.
Giant Taro, Giant Elephant Ear, Upright Elephant Ear, Pai
Origin: Tropical Asia
Alocasia macrorrhiza is similar to other large-leafed arums such as the Xanthosoma sagittifolium, Peltrandra spp., and Colocasia esculenta, often called Taro. Alocasia macrorrhiza differs from the others in having an upright stem and holding its leaves upright, and in several technical characteristics that mean a lot to the botanists. Numerous hybrids have been produced from among the various Elephant Ear species, and it’s not always possible to identify particular specimens.
It produced insignificant but fragrant white flowers on a sradix enclosed in a leaf-like, yellow-green spathe.
Giant taro is cultivated throughout the tropics for its edible rhizomes and shoots.