Monday, January 15, 2018

January Blooms 2018

I love gardening for butterflies!

January here in our hot tropics is still within the rainy season months, but rains only come when there is a typhoon. Fortunately, typhoons are not as prevalent as during the end of the year. The easterly winds coming from cold countries are still here, so we don't feel yet the essence of the dry season, the heat. Even if our day temperatures are still around the 30Cs, our nights are still comfortable, even without the airconditioning.

However, our annuals are already near the end of their lives, they have to seed in preparation for the dry season. But many weeds are blooming well this time, and the insects are also multiplying well for the continuity of their species. Being a butterfly hobbyist, i love whatever blooms there are, even the invasives. The following photos include the weeds, some native and also some introduced species.

 Above is a small flower around 1cm in diameter, but small butterflies and insects love it. I just haven't taken time for their identities. These are plants always seen in our property. Picture at the bottom is their normal stand.

 Above looks so dainty and found in our wild areas, or fallowed areas. I think it is the white plumbago. But i am not sure if it is native or introduced here. The bottom picture is its natural stand in the wild. I have not seen it in domestication. I just let it be in the yard in the biodiversity garden.


Another weed commonly found in the abandoned fields. The flowers are very small about maybe 3-4mm in length. It is a favorite of the small lycaenid butterflies.


This is an unintentionally introduced species, very invasive and poisonous to animals. Locally it is called 'hagonoy', Chromolaena odorata. It has very deep sturdy roots that withstand long dry season, helping it to become more invasive. I tolerate it because the butterflies love them too.

Another bushy flowers that i am not familiar with the ID. It is a bushy vine at the vegetative stage, entangling the lower bushes until they fully cover them. Insects also visit the blooms often

 this is a domestic plant in my garden, Pentas lanceolata, specifically sought after by this swallowtail butterfly, Menelaides deiphobus rumanzovia

 The ever present blooming Bougainvillea, a permanent fixture in tropical gardens, is also loved by this red butterfly, Menelaides deiphobus rumanzovia




Impatiens balsamina gets invasive during the rainy season, has at least triple generation before the season ends. We have 3 colors in my garden, and the seeds are naturally stored in the ground waiting for the next rainy season. They have short roots making them easier to pull out when needed.

 Justicia plant adds lovely colors in the garden too, but i haven't seen butterflies nectaring on them.


Indian beads at left are dainty little fairies dancing with the wind. Lots of those hanging bunches are so nice if blooming simultaneously. At the right is Hoya diversifolia at the top of the lanzones trees. They continuously bloom for months until February.

 This Episcia is struggling to grow in my garden. It loves high humidity in the environment which might not be maintained in ours, as it is mostly windy these days.

Above is not a blooming plant, but the variegated foliage makes a substitute color in a dull corner. It is very easy to maintain so we always have them. Locally called 'kutsarita', it is Alternanthera sp.

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