Lantana

LantanaCommon Name: Lantana[1]

Scientific Name: Lantana camara

Description: Tender, subtropical shrub grown as houseplant; flower clusters display yellow at center with pink or orange near the outside; borne freely from summer through frost

Size: Can grow 3 to 6 feet high, but usually pruned into a low mound or trained as a standard

Cultural Information: Prefers full sun and moist but well-drained soil; fertilize regularly during growing season

USDA Zones: 9 through 10

Historical Notes: The multi-colored flowers of lantana have endeared it to American gardeners since at least the beginning of the 19th century. Late 18th-century Virginia gardener Jean Skipwith included in her list of plants the "Prickly Lantana (house plant) very brilliant, seldom without flowers."[2] Nurseryman Bernard McMahon in The American Gardener's Calendar, 1806, suggests lantana as a greenhouse plant, to be moved outdoors in summer.[3] Robert Buist, influential garden writer of the early 19th century, wrote of lantana: "these are very handsome growing plants, and will even keep in a good green-house; but in such case will only bloom in summer."[4]

Footnotes

  1. This article is based on a Center for Historic Plants Information Sheet.
  2. Ann Leighton, American Gardens in the Eighteenth Century (Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1986), 442.
  3. Bernard McMahon, The American Gardener's Calendar, 1806 (Charlottesville: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation, 1997), 449.
  4. Robert Buist, The American Flower Garden Directory (Philadelphia: Carey and Hart, 1841), 185.

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