Pentapetes phoenicia

September 20th, 2011

Pentapetes label…is the mystery plant in the previous post. The flowers make me think of Abutilon – they have that nodding look – and they’re both in the Malvaceae family.

It’s native to south Asia, where it’s a weed (of course) of rice fields. That reminds me that the Lantana standard I so admired at Monticello is also a weed in India (and probably not trained to a standard there).

Thomas Jefferson may have acquired his Pentapetes seeds from Bernard McMahon, the Philadelphia nurseryman. There is apparently a range of red-to-pink shades. I only saw the red one, but pink is mentioned on the Monticello website.

Some links:

4 Responses to “Pentapetes phoenicia”

  1. Nice… I would prefer the red shades over the pinks, because your photo of the scarlet was just gorgeous. I’m going to have to look for seeds for those this winter!

    • entangled says:

      Me too on the seed hunt – I hope Monticello offers them again. I also prefer the red, and the dark leaves were a nice complement to the red flowers.

  2. gail says:

    So many plants only so much space in the garden! Love the red one and the leaf shape is cool. gail

    • entangled says:

      I know, I know….it’s just impossible to grow everything… :-) … but this one is really cute, and historical (Jefferson and everything). Besides, the garden magically expands in size over the winter (in my imagination) and will easily accomodate everything. ;-)

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