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Cali On My Mind

Lately I've got Cali on my mind. Not the Sunshine State. I've been thinking about Calibrachoa (Kal-ih_bruh-KOE-a). Those little petunia-like flowers that are blooming their beautiful hearts out right now.

Calibrachoa Hot Pink with yellow throat

Known as "Million Bells" a very apt description; Calibrachoa is a prolific bloomer. Each mounding plant is covered with flowers. Colors range from vibrant- almost piercing colors all the way around the color wheel to soft pastels. Such a wide palette of colors to choose from and they flower all summer right through to fall.

Physician and botanist Vincente Cervantes named this vigorous mini-petunia after Mexican botanist and pharmacologist, Antonio de la Cal y Bracho who first described them in the 1800's. Native to South America there are 28 species of Calibrachoa.

Calibrachoa Purple with yellow stippling

These lovely sprawling annuals thrive in sun or part shade and prefer well drained soils even a bit on the dry side. Disease resistant and easy to care for they make the best container plants providing texture and a riot of color.

They do require regular feedings to help them bloom continually.

There are varieties that are double petalled, and even varieties that are striped.

Have you got an empty decorative container? An old teapot or basket?

How about an empty space in the garden, just crying out for attention? Let us know! Try some Cali-- you'll be amazed at this little garden powerhouse, and you too will have Cali on your mind.

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