More Mirabilis Stories

Judy Glattstein
Sun, 24 Jun 2018 09:32:17 PDT
When I was a very young girl with only a single digit to my age, my 
parents owned a four family apartment house in Chicago. It was within 
walking distance of Lake Michigan. And there were Mirabilis jalapa in 
the small backyard. Nobody gardened. (I dug around, made mud puddles, 
but this was not gardening.) Every year, four o'clocks grew like a bushy 
hedge and flowered. No idea if there survived the winter, growing as 
they did against the building's back stoop / stairs. Seems unlikely so 
they must have been re-seeding and flowering as first year plants.

There used to be M. jalapa growing against the foundation of the small 
Baptistown NJ post office (small enough that it is closed while the 
postmistress has her lunch) but they disappeared with some renovations.

Several years, 2007 or 2008, ago the Frelinghuysen Arboretum in 
Morristown NJ had Mirabilis jalapa 'Limelight' in their mixed planters. 
'Limelight' has chartreuse foliage and magenta flowers. There was ripe 
seed . . . need I say more? It comes true from seed.

Select Seed offers some single color cultivars: 'Alba' has, as you would 
expect, white flowers while 'Orange Crush' is eponymously named.

There are vendors at the Philadelphia Flower Show, also the NJ Flower & 
Garden Show, selling "bulbs" including mirabilis tubers supposedly by 
separate colors.

Also, (though I'm tempting fate here) deer do not snack on mirabilis.

When M. longiflora seed has formed I will send some to the seed 
exchange. People who want to hedge their bets and ask for some directly 
- send me a private email with your address. Domestic / in USA only 
please. And I will expect reimbursement for postage.

Judy in New Jersey where the forecast rain has not arrived, just 
unpleasantly high humidity
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