Two University of Arizona Plant Science interns, Claire Heinitz and Janon Al Failakawi, helping to create our nature trail.
Saturday, June 7, 2008
An erect stem bearing 5 to 15 dainty pink flowers make this wild gladiolus one of the most striking of spring flowering bulbs. Although not abundant locally, one to several plants may be found growing in open, sunny locations or in shady oak woodlands.
Scientific name: Gladiolus italicus
Italian common name: Gladiolo del Campi
English common name: Italian Gladiolus
The dense, pyramidal "Christmas tree" shape and the unique fuzzy texture of this native herb set it apart from other spring vegetation. Small white flowers appear as Viperina matures at a height of 0.5 to 1 m.
Scientific name: Echium italicum
Italian common name: Viperina bianca
English common name: Italian Viper's Bugloss
At Gangivecchio, conditions have been ideal this spring for a generous and extended flowering of Red Valerian. It's commonly seen along roadsides and sunny open areas, usually on poor dry soils. Because of its attractive, long-lasting blooms, some gardeners grow this plant as a cut flower.
Scientific name: Centranthus ruber
Italian common name: Valeriana rossa
English common name: Red Valerian
The tan and pale bluish flowers are unusual for an iris but the shape of the leaves suggest the genus identity. Each bloom develops a large pod which opens in fall to reveal colorful, long-lasting orange red seeds.
Scientific name: Iris foetidissima
Italian common name: Giaggiolo Puzzolente
English common name: Gladwin Iris
An erect spike of densely packed rose-pink and white flowers make this one of the most characteristic and elegant spring flowering plants of Gangivecchio. The luxurious clump of dark green foliage at the base is thought to be the architectural leaf motif used in Corinthian columns.
Scientific name: Acanthus mollis
Italian common name: Acanto
English common name: Bear's Breech
Big radiant pink flowers with purple streaked petals open generously and continuously to create an eye-catching spring show of color. Because of the intense pink floral display, this species is sometimes used in landscape beds and borders.
Scientific name: Lavatera thuringiaca
Italian common name: Malvone di Turingia
English common name: Tree Mallow