This blog reviews the latest products, plants and innovations in gardening. It also provides a link for my many gardening friends who are members of the GardenMessenger and Seedmessenger Yahoo groups and their sub-groups that I moderate.

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Location: Australia

I am a semi-retired UK botanical garden curator and former international horticultural consultant, who has worked extensively in Europe, the Middle East, North America and Australia. I spend part of the year in Australia and part in Europe, mainly due to family and work commitments. I earn my living from writing and editing Internet copy, articles and books. I have written over fifty books on gardening and have been translated into twenty-four different languages. I am a former UK Garden Writer of the Year and a previous Quill & Trowel Award Winner from the Garden Writer’s Association of America. I am interested in developing gardening communities on the Internet and I manage the popular GardenMessenger Yahoo group, along with its various sub-groups like PondMessenger and SeedMessenger. I also edit International Water Gardener and its associated regional web-sites.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Puerto Rican Introductions

Being evaluated - Simarouba tulae

Thanks to Agricultural Research Service (ARS) germplasm collection efforts, the rare Puerto Rican Tabebuia haemantha, an evergreen tree that is small in stature but bold in colour, may one day be grown and sold to gardeners and landscapers in Florida and other subtropical regions of the United States. Native to Puerto Rico, T. haemantha, also known as Roble Cimarron, possesses many features of interest to ornamental horticulturists. Its red to bronze-coloured new growth naturally forms a narrow crown, and it has deep-red to pink flowers for a long period of the year.

Under the direction of horticulturist Tomás Ayala-Silva, curator of the National Germplasm Repository located at ARS’s Subtropical Horticulture Research Station in Miami, new ornamentals like the Puerto Rican tree are being investigated. The repository is one of eighteen such repositories for seeds and other reproducible plant parts maintained in the National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS). The Miami repository is responsible for maintaining U.S. clonal collections of avocado, banana, mango, plantain, sugarcane, ornamentals, and other tropical crops. One of its important roles is evaluating new subtropical and tropical species for possible introduction to commerce and home gardeners.

To read the complete article and to catch up on other gardening news visit the News pages of the GardenMessenger web-site click here.

Happy Gardening



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