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, 20 September 2018

FFF356 - SPRING BOUQUET

It's the Spring Equinox here in the Southern Hemisphere and I'm posting today a bouquet gathered from our garden. You can find in it the following flowers:

Freesias, anemones, bluebells, daisies, marigolds, stocks, ixias, rosemary, bergenias, lilies, sparaxis, canola, red valerian.

The fragrance is delicious and it certainly brings Spring indoors very effectively.

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Thursday, 13 September 2018

FFF355 - LITHODORA

Lithodora diffusa ‘Grace Ward’ (also called blue lithospermum, USDA Zone: 5-9) in the Boraginaceae family is a choice ground-cover or rock garden plant, making an unforgettable display when grown well. Plants form a low, creeping mat of hairy dark-green leaves, studded with sapphire-blue star flowers from late spring through summer. The Greek lithodora literally means "stone gift", referring to their preferred rocky habitats.

Plants must have a well-drained, acidic soil in order to thrive. Heavy clay soils are sure death. In colder regions this plant will benefit from a light covering of evergreen boughs as soon as the soil is frozen in late Autumn. Combines well with heaths and heathers, since plants have similar requirements. Evergreen where hardy. Not especially vigorous.

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Thursday, 6 September 2018

FFF354 - WHITE BOTTLEBRUSH

Callistemon is a genus of shrubs in the family Myrtaceae, first described as a genus in 1814. The entire genus is endemic to Australia but widely cultivated in many other regions and naturalised in scattered locations. Their status as a separate taxon is in doubt, some authorities accepting that the difference between callistemons and melaleucas is not sufficient for them to be grouped in a separate genus.

Callistemon species have commonly been referred to as bottlebrushes because of their cylindrical, brush like flowers resembling a traditional bottle brush. They are mostly found in the more temperate regions of Australia, especially along the east coast and typically favour moist conditions so when planted in gardens thrive on regular watering. However, two species are found in Tasmania and several others in the south-west of Western Australia. At least some species are drought-resistant and some are used in ornamental landscaping elsewhere in the world.

Melaleuca pallida, commonly known as lemon bottlebrush, is a plant in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae and is endemic to eastern Australia. (Some Australian state herbaria use the name Callistemon pallidus.) It is an upright shrub with thin, spreading branches, silvery new growth and pale yellow, sometimes pinkish bottlebrush flowers. Callistemon pallidus is a hardy plant, adaptable to many soils but needs full sun.

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Thursday, 30 August 2018

FFF353 - LACHENALIA

Lachenalia aloides (opal flower) is a species of flowering plant in the family Asparagaceae, native to the Western Cape of South Africa. It is a bulbous perennial growing to 15–28 cm  tall by 5 cm broad, with strap-shaped spotted leaves and fleshy stems bearing pendant tubular yellow flowers, red at the tips, in winter and spring.

The Latin aloides literally means "aloe-like"; though L. aloides, despite its similarity, does not belong to the same family of plants as aloes. Numerous cultivars have been bred for garden use. They require a sheltered, frost-free position or under glass. The following have gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit: L. aloides var. aurea and L. aloides var. quadricolor.

Lachenalia look good planted at the front of beds and borders, in rockeries, along pathways or in pots. Plant into well drained soil in a sunny position. They will tolerate some shade but flower better in sun. Plant 5-10cm deep and 10cm apart. Water in then keep just moist in growth. Add a little fertiliser when they begin to bloom and that is about all you will need to do. They are easy care bulbs that can be left in the ground to naturalise. Try combining Lachenalia with Muscari or Grape Hyacinths; they also grow well with early Daffodils or spring star flowers.

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Thursday, 23 August 2018

FFF352 - LEUCADENDRON

Leucadendron is a genus of about 80 species of flowering plants in the family Proteaceae, endemic to South Africa, where they are a prominent part of the fynbos ecoregion and vegetation type.

Species in the genus Leucadendron are small trees or shrubs that are erect or creeping. Most species are shrubs that grow up to 1 m tall, some to 2 or 3 m. A few grow into moderate-sized trees up to 16 m tall. All are evergreen. The leaves are largely elliptical, sometimes needle-like, spirally arranged, simple, entire, and usually green, often covered with a waxy bloom, and in the case of the Silvertree, with a distinct silvery tone produced by dense, straight, silky hairs. This inspired the generic name Leucadendron, which literally means "white tree".

The flowers are produced in dense inflorescences at the branch tips; plants are dioecious, with separate male and female plants. The seed heads, or infructescences, of Leucadendron are woody cone-like structures. This gave rise to their generic common name cone-bush. The cones contain numerous seeds. The seed morphology is varied and reflects subgeneric groupings within the genus.

Shown here is Leucadendron salignum 'Fireglow'. It has red-tipped, green foliage, with masses of red flower bracts from early autumn to early spring. It prefers a well drained, acidic soil and will tolerate light frosts, as well as coastal conditions. Prune after flowering and fertilise with an acidic fertiliser sparingly. This plant has a moderate water requirement once established. These flowers bracts make excellent cut flowers. The plants compact nature makes it ideal for small hedges, general landscaping, and looks fantastic in decorative pots.

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Thursday, 16 August 2018

FFF351 - TULIP TREE

Liriodendron tulipifera (known as the tulip tree, American tulip tree, tuliptree, tulip poplar, whitewood, fiddle-tree, and yellow poplar) is the Western Hemisphere representative of the two-species genus Liriodendron, and the tallest eastern hardwood. It is native to eastern North America from Southern Ontario and Illinois eastward across southern New England and south to central Florida and Louisiana.

It can grow to more than 50 m in virgin cove forests of the Appalachian Mountains, often with no limbs until it reaches 25–30 m in height, making it a very valuable timber tree. It is fast-growing, without the common problems of weak wood strength and short lifespan often seen in fast-growing species. April marks the start of the flowering period in the southern USA; trees at the northern limit of cultivation begin to flower in June. Surprisingly, the flower-bearing branches make good cut flower displays.

The flowers are pale green or yellow (rarely white), with an orange band on the tepals; they yield large quantities of nectar. The tulip tree is the state tree of Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Tulip trees make magnificently shaped specimen trees, but are very large, growing to about 35 m in good soil. Liriodendron tulipifera has been introduced to many temperate parts of the world, at least as far north as Sykkylven, Norway.

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Thursday, 9 August 2018

FFF350 - LOROPETALUM

Loropetalum is a genus of three species of shrubs or small trees in the witch-hazel family, Hamamelidaceae, native to China, Japan, and south-eastern Asia. The name Loropetalum refers to the shape of the flowers and comes from the Greek loros meaning strap and petalon meaning petal.

Flowers are produced in clusters during spring and are similar to those of the closely related witch-hazel. Each flower consists of four to six (depending on species) slender strap shaped petals 1-2 cm long. Illustrated here is Loropetalum chinense var. rubrum, often called "Chinese Fringe Flower". Plan your colours to begin with. This particular loropetalum looks great in a black pot for an oriental feel or try a bright contrasting colour for a real statement.

As it’s low growing, plant it at the front of garden beds for maximum impact. Loropetalums in general prefer moist but well drained soils but are quite adaptable to less than ideal conditions. Pruning is generally not required, however, you can give a light trim after flowering to help keep them in your preferred shape. A feed with a slow release fertiliser in early spring is beneficial. They are ideal for low maintenance areas, rockeries and garden edges.

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Thursday, 2 August 2018

FFF349 - DEANE'S WATTLE

Acacia deanei (Deane's wattle, green wattle) is a tree native to Australia, which is used for controlling erosion. There are two subspecies: Acacia deanei subsp. deanei and Acacia deanei subsp. paucijuga. Both subspecies are mainly 2-4 m tall and grow on plains, slopes and tablelands, often near watercourses, in gullies or on stony hillsides, and on a wide range of soil types in Eastern Australia.

This species often flowers throughout the year, especially during March to August; pods mature mainly during October to March or sometimes later. There are about 45 viable seeds per gram. Nicking or boiling the seeds in water for a minute at 100°C is required to induce germination. The seeds start to germinate in about 5 days if grown at 25°C.

Acacia deanei is a fast growing, nitrogen-fixing shrub that has the potential to play a valuable role in catchment protection. It is relatively drought and cold tolerant; its pollen has value in apiculture. This tree is known to be moderately drought tolerant but is killed by damaging fire and does not regenerate foliage afterwards. It tolerates frosts in the 0° to -5°C range or tolerates heavy frosts colder than -5°C. This tree has good ornamental attributes and is often used in the urban environment as a street or park tree. 

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Thursday, 26 July 2018

FFF348 - PRUNUS

Prunus mume is an Asian tree species classified in the Armeniaca section of the genus Prunus subgenus Prunus. Its common names include Chinese plum and Japanese apricot. The flower is usually called plum blossom. This distinct tree species is related to both the plum and apricot trees. Although generally referred to as a plum in English, it is more closely related to the apricot.

In Chinese, Japanese and Korean cooking, the fruit of the tree is used in juices, as a flavouring for alcohol, as a pickle and in sauces. It is also used in traditional medicine. The tree's flowering in late winter and early spring is highly regarded as a seasonal symbol. It is flowering now in Melbourne, which is a little early! Our July is equivalent to the Northern Hemisphere January. Nevertheless, it does look splendid...

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Thursday, 19 July 2018

FFF347 - CHRYSANTHEMUM

Although once referred to as Dendranthema, the florists chrysanthemum is now correctly known under its old name. There are about 40 species in the genus Chrysanthemum, mainly from East Asia. In China, where they have been cultivated for over 2,500 years, the chrysanthemum was used medicinally and for flavouring, as well as for ornament. All chrysanthemum flowers are edible, but the flavour varies widely from plant to plant, from sweet to tangy to bitter or peppery. It may take some experimentation to find flavours you like.

The flower is also significant in Japan where it is a symbol of happiness and longevity, and the royal family has ruled for 2,600 years from the Chrysanthemum Throne. The annual species are referred to as Xanthophthalmum and are mainly used for summer bedding or as fillers in borders of perennial flowers. Most chrysanthemums are upright plants with lobed leaves that can be aromatic. The many showy flowerheads, carried at the tips of strong stems, begin to bloom as the days shorten.

Florists chrysanthemums (Chrysanthemum grandiflorum) are grouped according to form: Irregular incurved, reflexed, regular incurved, intermediate incurved, pompon, single and semi-double, anemone, spoon, quill, spider, brush or thistle, and unclassified, which is a catch-all group for blooms not yet classified or not falling into one of the existing groups. Florists chrysanthemums prefer a heavier richer soil in a sunny position, though they like a spot that offers some afternoon shade. The plants require training and trimming to produce their best flowers. Pinch back when young and disbud to ensure the best flower show.Propagate by division when dormant or from half-hardened summer cuttings.

Shown  here is the 'Garden Pixie' miniature chrysanthemum, which flowers prolifically and adds welcome splashes of intense colour in the garden or in pots. Intense greenhouse cultivation for the florist trade means that these chrysanthemums are available almost all year round.

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