Sunday, September 22, 2013

Dwarf Pink Powderpuff

If you've been following along, you know my love for all plants Australian.   My theory is most flowers that look like they're made of stamens come from Australia.  It's just a theory.   This plant, Calliandra (CAL-ee-AN-dra) haematocephala nana or Dwarf Pink Powderpuff is native to Bolivia.  But Calliandras originate in Asia, Africa, the Americas and Australia.  

Most people in SoCal know the common Pink Powderpuff or Calliandra haematocephala.  It is a lax growing sprawling plant that will grow 8-10 feet.  Where do you grow such a plant?  It's grown on a trellis mostly or kept trimmed and becomes a large shrub.  It also has those leaflets(little leaf parts make up a whole leaf) that close up at night.  That is called nychinastic.  

I have always loved those pink stamen-y flowers. I was happy to know that there was a dwarf version. I found in on the internet and mail ordered it last year.  It was just a tiny 2" pot when I received it. I repotted it to a 1 gallon size right away and let it grow up for a few months.  Last Fall I planted it in the ground and today it's about 16" tall and flowering.  Calliandras bloom off and on all year here but are tender to a hard frost.  Mine did not suffer this past winter when we had about 4 nights of frost. Maybe because it's planted under our huge Deodar Cedar tree. 

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