Living in Hawaii we are fortunate to have plants that bloom year round. But, there are plants here that are specific to a season in producing their flowers also. If you like to change up your landscape with a little less work, planting flora with different blooming seasons is one way to do it! In this blog we are going to share some of the colorful and attractive spring blooming plants.
Some know them as “Lily-of-the-Nile”. This plant produces attractive clusters of blue, purple, and white funnel-shaped flowers that will be an attractive groundcover or bedding plant in any landscape in the spring. Agapanthus varieties can grow to be between 1.5 and 4 feet tall and 1 to 2.5 feet wide. They prefer pull sun but can handle some shade.
Gardenia jasminoides ‘Aimee”, or Cape Jasmine, is known for it’s large, ivory-white, rose-like, fragrant flowers. The Aimee Gardenia grows to be 4-6 feet tall and wide and makes an excellent specimen, container, or hedge plant. This gardenia prefers full sun to light shade, well-drained soil, and has average water needs. You may see many other types of gardenias planted all over Kauai due to their year-round-blooming habits, but the flower of the Aimee Gardenia is well worth the wait to see in the spring.
The Bottlebrush Tree is a Callistemon species given it’s common name because of the “bottle brush” shaped flowers. The flowers are attractive to pollinators (and to people who love beautiful, colorful specimens in their yard!). Plant them in containers, as small trees (up to 15 feet tall), or as a hedge. Bottlebrush trees are resistant to most diseases and pests and are moderately salt and drought tolerant, suitable for xeriscaping. These trees are sun-loving and you will get the most abundant blooms by leaving them in full sun.
Day Lilies (Hemerocallis) are easy to grow, low-maintenance, and produce showy, fragrant flowers attractive to butterflies. The “day lily” name alludes to the flowers which typically last about 24 hours. They are extremely adaptable, have moderate salt tolerance, and good heat and drought tolerance. Day lilies prefer full sun to partial shade and need well-drained soil. There are many color varieties.
Here at the nursery, we have these amazing little Sunrosa Dwarf Roses. We have them in shades of red, pink, orange, and yellow. Because of their compact size they are good for container specimens or to plant in your bedding areas. They will grow to be between 18 and 24 inches tall and 12 to 18 inches wide. Once established, they are very disease resistant and are relatively low-maintenance as they require much less pruning than traditional shrub roses. Sunrosa roses prefer full sun to partial shade and prefer their soil to be kept moist and not dried out.
Early Beehive Ginger
It’s scientific name is Zingiber spectabile. The first part of it’s name meaning “horn-shaped” and the last meaning “visible” or “spectacular”. And spectacular it is! Growing to 6 to 8 feet tall, this ginger is attractive in the garden or as a cut flower for all those tropical arrangements. There are different color varieties with most blooming in the spring and summer. They are happy in sun to partial shade and like consistently moist soil- not wet or dried out. All parts of this plant exude the ginger aroma.
Tabebuia donnell-smithii, is commonly called Primavera tree in most areas that the tree inhabits in Mexico and Central America. In Hawaii, we know it as the Gold Tree. Primavera means Spring! So, we had to include this brightly colored tree in our spring bloomers. Gold Trees grow to be between 30 and 40 feet tall. They produce a striking display of yellow tubular flowers that replace the leaves during the flowering season (spring). When the last flowers fall to the ground,new leaves appear.
Peacock Ginger go completely dormant in the winter. In the spring, the first signs of life from these incredible gingers are their rosy pink flowers. That’s right, the flower emerges first! The flowers fade away before the peacock-feather-patterned foliage appears. They will grow to 18 to 24 inches tall and wide during the season before going dormant again. Many grow this as a summer groundcover or as a specimen plant in a container or their landscape. These gingers require almost full shade and moist, well-drained soil.
Red Caribea Heliconia
Heliconia caribea is available in different colors. As you might guess from it’s scientific name, it is native to the Caribbean. This is another great plant for those that like cut flowers and tropical flower arrangements. The leaves of this heliconia are dark green, glossy, and banana-like in appearance. It will definitely be a focal point in any yard as it can grow to over 8 ft tall. Caribea are happier in areas with partial shade and are best grown on slopes or raised beds for good drainage. If you are incorporating this plant into your landscape, be sure to pick an area with a lot of space as Caribea are clumping heliconias- meaning the keiki shoot (new shoot) breaks the ground very close to the mom plant- and need room to grow.
Yellow Jasmine, Jasminum odoratissimum, is also known as ‘Sweetest Jasmine‘ and is another fragrant spring bloomer. In Hawaii, this jasmine will often bloom from spring to early fall. It is a drought-tolerant, vining shrub that grows to be between 6 and 8 feet tall. It can grow in full sun to mostly shady conditions and is suitable for xeriscapes. Although drought tolerant, you will get the most flowers out of your plant with summer watering. The flowers are used for flavoring or scenting tea and in perfumery.
This blog was written by Dana.