Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Lantana

When I put a picture of my lantana tree on my blog several people said they'd never heard of a lantana tree and they're correct.  Lantana, which is a member of the Verbena family, is actually a shrub.  Shortly after moving here we were in a garden center and saw one that had been cultivated into appearing to be  a tree.  I loved it, looked at Mac and asked if he thought he could do it.  He looked at the plant closely and said he could.
So working with a lantana we'd rescued from the garden, it was dying, and putting it  by the driveway, he went to work.  He selected the largest stem, attached it to a pole and lopped off lower branches.  Each year it grew, he removed lower branches  and it looked more like a tree, so that's what I called it. Now it hardly grows any lower branches. We also have lantanas on each side of the driveway that he's also growing into trees.
Lantanas are interesting plants, we bought a couple when we first moved here and then found that they grow wild here have moved from people's yards. They've become naturalized to the southeastern United States, they don't need to be planted, they just move in on their own.
They're actually a tropical plant and usually found in tropical regions of the Americas and Africa.  It's also found in the South Pacific and is considered a problem in Australia.  They can take over and you sometimes have to be severe with them.  But I do appreciate a plant that can take care of itself.
Their leaves are poisonous to animals, but butterflies LOVE the flowers.  Sometime we'll go out in the summer and there'll be a dozen butterflies nipping around them.
So that's the story of my Lantana Tree.

Just started being trained

Notice the stem, that's how he trains them.

Wild Lantana


Butterflies love them!!!

This is one he started out by his garden, he hasn't trimmed the bottom yet, but he will.

9 comments:

  1. Beautiful!! Your Mac does a good job training them ! :)

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  2. Lantanas are great plants.
    One flowering plant that will grow in the hot Tucson heat.

    cheers, parsnip

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  3. It's wonderful how it's been trained. It's always a bonus when a plant attracts butterflies.

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  4. Making the Lantana into a tree shape gives it so much more appeal than a bush.

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  5. Amazing, you learn something new every day. he has certainly done a great job.

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  6. After living in a desert country for 21 years, I don't care if something is invasive or a weed. If it grows and flowers, then it is a-o-k in my book. We have lantana here and the butterflies do love them. Sadly, with the heat setting in, our growing season is coming to an end so everything will be dying off until the end of the year when the winter season rolls around. Very interesting how you've trained them to take on a tree shape. :)

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  7. It's always nice to have plants that attract the butterflies.
    Thanks for posting all the information.

    All the best Jan

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  8. Wonderful, it's good that the butterflies love it too:)

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  9. Clever man you have there - it looks gorgeous.

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