LONICERA HILDEBRANDIANA

LONICERA HILDEBRANDIANA

FAMILY :: CAPRIFOLIACEAE
GIANT BURMESE HONEYSUCKLE: This honeysuckle is spectacular, but it’s not reliably hardy where temperatures drop below freezing often, although mature specimens have survived short temperature dips to the low 20ºs.

The evergreen leaves are leathery, dark green and up to 6″ long. The flowers are sweetly fragrant, white to yellow to orange and up to 7″ long in pairs along the stems. It has black 1″ diameter fruit. Actually, this honeysuckle looks more like a tree than a vine. It thrives in rich soil in part shade or sun in the tropics or subtropics and even in coastal or Southern California and other near subtropical regions. Origiannly from Southeast Asia.

LONICERA JAPONICA ‘Halliana’

LONICERA JAPONICA ‘Halliana’

FAMILY :: CAPRIFOLIACEAE
HALL’S HONEYSUCKLE, JIN-YIN-HUA: Called the “silver and gold flower” in China, this hardy, easily grown evergreen vine or ground cover has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for 1500 years. “Hall’s” variety was developed in New York in 1862 by George Hall as a more vigorous variety of this species.

Medicinally, a tea of the flowers is considered febrifuge, astringent, depurative, antidiarrhetic and diuretic. In practical terms, it is widely used in China to treat colds and the flu. As with most honeysuckles, it grows quite well in sun or part shade in relatively moist, acid soil, although it will survive almost anywhere. It flowers all summer with multitudes of very sweetly scented 1½” white turning yellow (or silver turning gold) flowers in pairs along the stem. The black berries are somewhat poisonous.

CHENOPODIUM AMBROSIODES

CHENOPODIUM AMBROSIODES

FAMILY :: CHENOPODIACEAE
EPAZOTÉ, AMERICAN WORMSEED, MEXICAN TEA: A very strongly flavored and scented annual or perennial (in mild areas), native to Mexico but naturalized throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. It grows in part shade or full sun to 3-4′ tall and spreads a bit too easily by seed for tidy gardeners. It is a human and animal antihelminthic (for round and hook worms). Culinarily in Mexico it is used for flavoring beans. Epazoté means “skunk stench” in Aztec.