While my roses are still frying, here is a plant that is doing very well in my yard this week. It is Clerodendrum philippinum. It is an uncommon plant so I've never really heard anyone call it by its common name; Chinese Glory Bower. Research finds it called "Cashmere Bouquet" on one website. Oh really? It is native to Asia, likes part shade and will grow 4-8 ft. Being tropical, it can't take a hard frost. But even though we had several nights of it here this past winter, my plant did not suffer. As with most Clerodendrum the leaves are kind of stinky with good smelling flowers. The flowers are super fragrant! I've had this plant for about 10 years(it's probably longer because it always is!).
If you've been following along you know that we moved into this house 3 years ago. I'm almost done planting the yard. I've still got a bunch of backyard to do. But I had a little of the front yard near the house to finish. I planted a few plants near our kitchen and dining room windows in the summer(LIKE I SHOULDN'T). But because it's sort of an alcove and faces east with some shade from our Tangerine tree, the plants are doing well. This Clerodenrum was in a 7 gallon can for many years.
I wish you could smell it.
What a fluffy rosebud of flowers! There are many kinds of Clerodendrum. At the moment I have 2. I used to have maybe 5 different varieties. Some are travelers, meaning they can be invasive like C. bungeii that has pink flowers. But with beautiful fragrant flowers, sometimes it's worth fighting them :-) I'll have to find C. bungeii again.
In the Los Angeles area, we can grow so many wonderful plants. For so long I thought that going on trips I would see fabulous plants that I'd never see at home. Even though I have yet to encounter a Peony and haven't been to Indonesia or the Philippines, I haven't really seen any plants in the US that we don't have here. Hawaii DID have many unusual things. So if you're in the southland, seek out the unusual stuff and grow something different!