Azure blue sage (Salvia azurea) occurs naturally in flatwoods and sandhills. Its striking cerulean flowers bloom August through November, attracting a variety of bees, butterflies and even hummingbirds.
Lyreleaf sage (Salvia lyrata) is an attractive perennial with leafless spikes of tubular, lavender to bluish flowers. Bees are its predominant pollinator, but it also attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.
Tropical sage (Salvia coccinea) is a versatile perennial wildflower that no pollinator can resist, but it is particularly attractive to bees, large butterflies and hummingbirds.
Don’t let the title scare you off! I’ve been wondering why plants of the same species sometimes occur in different colors, so I did a little research. As you can see from my photos, some common flowers that have appeared in my garden are red and yellow forms of milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa) and blanketflower (Gaillardia puchella). I also have red, pink and white tropical sage (Salvia coccinea), which I’m sure many of you have also grown. Do you ever have white flower forms of your typically blue spiderwort (Tradescantia ohiensis) or Stokes’ aster (Stokesia laevis)? Wonder what’s going on?
Flowers of ice in Florida??? Yes, seeing is believing. I first saw icy flowers — often called frost flowers, ice flowers, ice ribbons, or the exotic-sounding crystallofolia — on a cold December morning in 2010. From a distance they looked like pieces of cotton attached to the stems of tropical sage (Salvia coccinea) growing in my front yard. But up close, these icy formations were just as William Gibson described in the 1800s when he saw them on longbranch frostweed (Helianthemum canadense).
Bring birds into your landscape by planting Florida native wildflowers, grasses and shrubs that provide food and habitat. Learn more now.
The insects that pollinate our food crops and natural areas are in steep decline. Our suburban landscapes are more important than ever in supporting them. No place for a garden? No problem! Our new video and handout can help you create a small pollinator oasis in a pot!
Wondering what native wildflowers and plants to use in a shady landscape? Use our new handout to evaluate your landscape’s light conditions and choose diverse species that will thrive and give your landscape a “real Florida” feel.
Ecologists estimate that only 3 to 4 percent of land in the United States has been undisturbed by human activity. That’s why providing habitat — food, shelter and nesting areas for wildlife — within sustainable urban landscapes should be an important goal for everyone.
We can’t create a perfect natural habitat for each species. However, we can make a difference by using Florida’s native wildflowers and plants. Learn how!
Florida Department of Transportation Wildflower Program This page is hosted by the Florida Wildflower Foundation as a courtesy to the Florida Department of Transportation. Photo Gallery The photos on this page highlight the successes of the Florida Department of Transportation Wildflower Program over the past 20 years. Due to construction activities, necessary re-working of roadsides…
Wondering what native wildflowers and plants to use in a dry landscape? Use our new handout to evaluate your landscape’s soil moisture and choose diverse species that will thrive and give your landscape a “real Florida” feel.