The rules for posting are simple!

1. Every Friday post a photo that includes one or more flowers.
2. Please only post photos you have authority to use.
3. Include a link to this blog in your post - http://floralfridayfoto.blogspot.com/
4. Leave the link to your FloralFridayFoto post below on inlinkz.
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When to Post:
inlinkz will be available every Thursday and will remain open until the next Wednesday.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

FFF241 - CORAL 'GERANIUM'

We know them as simply 'geraniums'. They are one of the most popular container plants, yet they are not really geraniums at all. Botanically they are Pelargonium. There are true geraniums, the perennial cranesbills, but they look little like the annual plants we commonly call 'geraniums'.

The confusion with the names can be traced back to disagreements between botanists over classification and is of little importance to most gardeners, except for the distinction that perennial cranesbill geraniums will come back each year and zonal geraniums, those now classified as Pelargonium, are topical perennials usually grown as annuals in colder climates. They got the prefix "zonal" because of the markings on their leaves.

Zonal geraniums were discovered in South Africa and if you have a similar, subtropical climate, you can grow them as perennials. This coral pink zonal geranium is Pelargonium x hortorum.  Zonal geraniums are bushy plants, mainly used for containers and bedding. There has been considerable breeding done, particularly for size and abundance and colours of flowers, so there is a good deal of variety. Zonal geraniums start blooming in mid-spring and will repeat bloom until frost. Deadheading the entire flower stalk after the flower fades will encourage more blooms.

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Thursday, 23 June 2016

FFF240 - DOUBLE DELIGHT

Narcissus is a genus of predominantly spring perennial plants in the Amaryllidaceae (amaryllis) family. Various common names including daffodil, daffadowndilly, narcissus, and jonquil are used to describe all or some members of the genus. Narcissus has conspicuous flowers with six petal-like tepals surmounted by a cup- or trumpet-shaped corona. The flowers are generally white or yellow (orange or pink in garden varieties), with either uniform or contrasting coloured tepals and corona.

Narcissus were well known in ancient civilisation, both medicinally and botanically, but formally described by Linnaeus in his Species Plantarum (1753). The genus is generally considered to have about ten sections with approximately 50 species. The number of species has varied, depending on how they are classified, due to similarity between species and hybridisation.

Felicia amelloides, the blue marguerite or blue daisy, is a species of flowering plant of the family Asteraceae, native to South Africa. F. amelloides is synonymous with, and formerly known as, F. aethiopica, Aster amelloides, Aster capensis, and Aster coelestis.

F. amelloides is an evergreen shrublet usually 30–60 cm tall by 50 cm wide, but sometimes up to 1 m tall, with densely branched and frequently dark red stems, and rough, hairy, ovate green leaves. Striking blue composite flowers with prominent yellow centres, about 30 mm in diameter, and borne on naked stalks up to 180 mm long.

This species is much cultivated, and in the temperate world is usually grown as a half-hardy annual in pots, window-boxes, hanging baskets, and other summer bedding schemes for parks and gardens. Drought- and wind-resistant, it requires a sheltered aspect in full sun, and does not tolerate frost.

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Thursday, 16 June 2016

FFF239 - CAMELLIA

Camellia is a genus of flowering plants in the family Theaceae. They are found in eastern and southern Asia, from the Himalayas east to Japan and Indonesia. There are 100–250 described species, with some controversy over the exact number. The genus was named by Linnaeus after the Jesuit botanist Georg Joseph Kamel, who worked in the Philippines, though he never described a camellia.

This genus is famous throughout East Asia; camellias are known as cháhuā (茶花) in Chinese, "tea flower", an apt designation, as tsubaki (椿) in Japanese, as dongbaek-kkot (동백꽃) in Korean and as hoa trà or hoa chè in Vietnamese. Of economic importance in the Indian subcontinent and Asia, leaves of C. sinensis are processed to create the popular beverage, tea. The ornamental Camellia japonica, Camellia oleifera and Camellia sasanqua and their hybrids are represented in cultivation by a large number of cultivars.

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Thursday, 9 June 2016

FFF238 - FORGET-ME-NOT

Myosotis (from the Greek: "mouse's ear", after the leaf) is a genus of flowering plants in the family Boraginaceae. In the northern hemisphere they are commonly called forget-me-nots or scorpion grasses. The common name "forget-me-not" was calqued from German, Vergissmeinnicht and first used in English in AD 1398 through King Henry IV.  Similar names and variations are found in many languages. Myosotis alpestris is the state flower of Alaska. Plants of this genus are commonly confused with Chatham Islands forget-me-nots which belong to a related genus, Myosotidium.

Myosotis have pentamerous actinomorphic flowers with 5 sepals and petals. Flowers are typically 1 cm diameter (or less), flat, and blue, pink, white or yellow with yellow centres, growing on scorpioid cymes. They may be annual or perennial with alternate leaves. They typically flower in spring or soon after snow-melt in alpine eco-systems. Their root systems are generally diffuse. Their seeds are found in small, tulip-shaped pods along the stem to the flower. The pods attach to clothing when brushed against and eventually fall off, leaving the small seed within the pod to germinate elsewhere. Seeds can be collected by putting a piece of paper under the stems and shaking the seed pods and some seeds will fall out. Myosotis scorpioides is also known as scorpion grass due to the spiralling curve of its inflorescence.

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Thursday, 2 June 2016

FFF237 - BILLBERGIA

Billbergia is a genus of flowering plants in the family Bromeliaceae, subfamily Bromelioideae. The genus, named for the Swedish botanist, zoologist, and anatomist Gustaf Johan Billberg, is divided into two subgenera: Billbergia and Helicodea. They are native to forest and scrub, up to an altitude of 1,700 m, in southern Mexico, the West Indies, Central America and South America, with many species endemic to Brazil. They are rosette-forming, evergreen perennials, usually epiphytic in habit, often with brilliantly coloured flowers.

The cultivar shown here is Billbergia 'Muriel Waterman' that was hybridised by the great American collector and enthusiast, Mulfor Foster, and introduced in 1946. The stout tubular rosette, is about 7.5 cm in diameter, opens out to a funnel at the top of some six to eight leaves. These are rose-maroon with transverse silver bands, making it one of the most colourful foliage billbergias. The showy flower spike consists of long pink bracts and striking blue flowers.

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Thursday, 26 May 2016

FFF236 - TIBOUCHINA

Tibouchina is a genus of about 350 species of neotropical plants in the family Melastomataceae. They are trees, shrubs or subshrubs growing 0.5–25 m tall, and are known as glory bushes or glory trees. They are native to rainforests of Mexico, the Caribbean, and South America, especially Brazil. The name comes from an adaptation of the native Guiana term for these shrubs.

In Brazil, people use the massed purple blooms to decorate churches at Easter time. Here in Australia tibouchinas also make quite a statement in autumn, with their riot of purple flowers. This particular plant is Tibouchina 'Alstonville', probably the best of the larger growing kinds, and common as a garden and street tree in Melbourne.

This plant was produced at Alstonville, on the New South Wales North coast, by the late Ken Dunstan. It is an evergreen small tree which usually grows to about 5m tall. The foliage is dark green in colour with a pale reverse. 'Alstonville' puts on a brilliant display of violet/purple flowers in late summer and autumn. It makes an excellent street or specimen tree, and responds very well to pruning.

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Thursday, 19 May 2016

FFF235 - ROSEMARY

Rosmarinus officinalis, commonly known as rosemary, is a woody, perennial herb with fragrant, evergreen, needle-like leaves and white, pink, purple, or blue flowers, native to the Mediterranean region. It is a member of the mint family Lamiaceae, which includes many other herbs. The name "rosemary" derives from the Latin for "dew" (ros) and "sea" (marinus), or "dew of the sea". The plant is also sometimes called anthos, from the ancient Greek word ἄνθος, meaning "flower". Rosemary has a fibrous root system.

Rosemary is an aromatic evergreen shrub that has leaves similar to hemlock needles. The leaves are used as a flavouring in foods such as stuffings and roast lamb, pork, chicken and turkey. It is native to the Mediterranean and Asia, but is reasonably hardy in cool climates. It can withstand droughts, surviving a severe lack of water for lengthy periods. Forms range from upright to trailing; the upright forms can reach 1.5 m tall, rarely 2 m.

The leaves are evergreen, 2–4 cm long and 2–5 mm broad, green above, and white below, with dense, short, woolly hair. The plant flowers in spring and summer in temperate climates, but the plants can be in constant bloom in warm climates; flowers are white, pink, purple or deep blue. Rosemary also has a tendency to flower outside its normal flowering season; it has been known to flower as late as early December, and as early as mid-February.

Since it is attractive and drought-tolerant, rosemary is used as an ornamental plant in gardens and for xeriscape landscaping, especially in regions of Mediterranean climate. It is considered easy to grow and pest-resistant. Rosemary can grow quite large and retain attractiveness for many years, can be pruned into formal shapes and low hedges, and has been used for topiary. It is easily grown in pots. The groundcover cultivars spread widely, with a dense and durable texture.

Rosemary grows on friable loam soil with good drainage in an open, sunny position. It will not withstand waterlogging and some varieties are susceptible to frost. It grows best in neutral to alkaline conditions (pH 7–7.8) with average fertility. It can be propagated from an existing plant by clipping a shoot (from a soft new growth) 10–15 cm long, stripping a few leaves from the bottom, and planting it directly into soil.

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