Today Joseph is taking us along on a visit to Miami Beach Botanical Gardens. Sited in southeastern Florida, it is in USDA Zone 11a, which means temperatures usually never dip below freezing, allowing a huge range of tropical plants to thrive.
This path leads toward a fountain in the water feature.
The delicate sprays of white flowers of nodding clerodendron (Clerodendron wallichii, Zones 8–11)
One of the fun things for Northerners visiting tropical gardens is seeing plants we think of as houseplants grown to their actual mature size. This is a ponytail palm (Beaucarnea recurvata), which has thrived in many a windowsill in the North but has never reached these proportions.
Monstera deliciosa is another popular houseplant that is currently a bit of a fad on Instagram among houseplant lovers. It naturally clings to and climbs up the trunks of trees, and so can reach enormous proportions.
The second part of the name Monstera deliciosa refers to these—the fruits that mature plants produce—which are, apparently, delicious.
These staghorn ferns (Platycerium bifurcatum) are growing as they would in nature—clinging to the trunks of trees.
Phalaenopsis, like many of the popular tropical orchids grown as houseplants, are epiphytes in nature, clinging to trunks and branches of trees with their thick roots.
The big red bracts of this banana (Musa species) peel back one by one to reveal rows of flowers.
As the flowering stem grows, the older blooms develop into the familiar banana fruits.
The banyan tree (Ficus benghalensis) sends down roots from its branches as it grows.
Once the roots touch the ground, they thicken and develop into secondary trunks, allowing the tree to grow and spread through a huge area.
If you’ve had the chance to visit a beautiful garden somewhere, please send us photos for our GPOD on the Road series! It is fun to see so many wonderful public gardens around the world.
Have a garden you’d like to share?
Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!
To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.
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