Archive for August 2016

Plants of the Week: August 29

Catalpa speciosa; S00182A; fall; tree

Catalpa speciosa, commonly known as the western catalpa, is a medium-sized deciduous tree native to the Midwestern United States. Native to a very small area where the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers meet, the western catalpa is commonly used as an ornamental tree elsewhere, as it is easy to grow due to its tolerance of both wet and dry soils. The western catalpa grows up to 70 feet, with an irregular form and large leaves. This tree exhibits large panicles of white flowers beginning in late May, which give way to long, narrow seedpods. Fall color is often dull yellow, …

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Plants of the Week: August 22

Kalanchoe thyrsiflora.DCA8

Kalanchoe thyrsiflora

Taking a trek on the gravel path from College Avenue towards the Cunningham House is only a short distance, but it is filled with many eye-catching exotic plants.  However, even among other fascinating specimens, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora takes the cake…the pancake.  Also appropriately known as the flapjack plant, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora grows succulent, pancake-shaped leaves in a rosette pattern up to 2’ feet tall with an additional 1-2’ foot spike of yellow, tubular flowers when stressed.

Like many desert plants, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora requires only minimal watering, full to partial sun, and well-drained, sandy, slightly alkaline soil.  If flapjack plant …

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Plants of the Week: August 1

Ulmus americana yellow fall color (7) JWCUlmus americana, commonly known as the American elm, is a large deciduous tree, native throughout the eastern half of North America. The tree used in the picture is the class tree of 1875, making this a relatively old tree. The American elm used to be one of the more widespread trees in forests of its native zone, but Dutch elm disease, which is spread by the elm bark beetle, killed off many elms in the early 1900s. All the elms on campus are injected with a fungicide to prevent it from getting Dutch elm disease. The American elm is …

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