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Thursday, May 7, 2009

Everybody Loves The Ixora!



Without a doubt, the most attractive flowering shrub in
my yard is the Ixora. It's blooming profusely now and
the summer months are indeed when it looks its best!
Said to be a native of Asia, there are about 400 varieties
of this plant. Ixora coccinea is also known as the Flame
of the Woods, Jungle Flame, and Jungle Geranium.

It is a dense, multi-branched shrub and I keep its height
at about 5ft with an annual winter trim. The very good
thing about the Ixora is that it's never really without
leaves or blooms. Winter isn't the best time as the leaves
seem to lack the green lustre and the blooms are greatly
reduced.



But there's always someone or the other stopping by. As I
crouched to take a shot at this Emigrant, I came face to
face with my resident garden lizard. No, he didn't like it
and took off over the wall.





I was introduced to many species of butterflies here.
Swallowtails, even the tailed jay variety, the Plain
Tiger, members of the Pansy family...we all said 'Hi'
to each other here. And some small birds too!

This is how the bush looks like in the winter months.



The other day, I followed this pair of yellow wasps from
this Croton, to the Ixora. It's usually difficult to get
a clear photo of these vicious-looking wasps. But that day,
they didn't seem to mind me at all!!







Another kind of wasp. This one is more often seen on the
bamboo plants.



The Peacock Pansy.



This pretty butterfly was never still but I'm posting
the blurry shot anyway. At least you'll get an idea about
the way it looks. Really can't wait to see what wildlife
this summer will bring to this colourful shrub!

16 comments:

mothernaturesgarden said...

Ixora is a little houseplant here. Seeing the five footer is amazing.
Donna

Frances said...

Hi Kanak, those will grow in southern Texas here in the US, we saw them in Houston. I adore that color, and it seems your wildlife does as well. Those wasps are positively terrifying! Now the butterflies are the opposite. We could pet them if they would allow it. The few we have seen here, it is still a little early have been flitting so speedily that a photo is impossible. I still like to see your shots, blurry or not. Thanks for taking the time with them. :-)
Frances

Mildred said...

what a pretty plant. The blooms are so vibrant and oh what nice photos of the insects. I hope you will enjoy your day.

tina said...

I like it very much too. I have seen where it is becoming more and popular up here in my region. A lovely plant! I can tell the insects all love it too.

NatureStop said...

You will be surprised to know that we also have Ixora blooming in the parks here...inpite of being a desert region.I really loved the wasps and butterflies.you got neat shots of the wasps.

Susie said...

This is such a pretty shrub/tree. How nice its still green in winter.

The last picture of the butterfly isn't too blurry. It does show the beauty of the insect.

Linda Lunda said...

Hi !!
That schrub is wonderful!
I have seen some differnt colors in Thailand and they are al beautiful.
The wasp looks like a strange alian with the loong behind.....
Linda

perennialgardener said...

Those would annuals or houseplants over here Kanak. Isn't it amazing! It's a beautiful plant, no wonder the wildlife flocks to it!

Roses and stuff said...

I can well understand why everybody loves the ixora! Such a colourful and floriferous shrub!
Katarina

Kanak Hagjer said...

Donna...and vice versa! Ixora as a little houseplant! That's news to me! Thanks for stopping by.

Frances, the thought about being stung is scary! At times there are so many bees and wasps flying about, I have to dodge to be out of their way. It's getting almost impossible to stand outside waiting for a clear shot...the heat is a bit too much!

Mildred...I've been re-arranging a few pots. Too hot in the day so I've set the alarm just so I can work outside early in the morning.

Tina, it's good to know that the Ixora is becoming popular in your region. The other colours like pink and yellow look very nice too!

Thanks, Ruby/Arun. Wow, to think Ixoras grow there too! Would love to see some of the pics. I suppose a lot of sprinklers need to be installed?

Susie, it never stopped flitting! Am glad to read your comment about the butterfly as well as the plant.

Thanks Linda. Those wasps are new-comers to my garden. When I first saw them, I couldn't take off my eyes off that vivid yellow!

Racquel, a bonus! I planted it without really thinking about the wildlife. I wasn't so much into noticing stuff back then!

Thanks Katarina. All my visitors feel that they have to stop here:) And that works out so well for me!

Chandramouli S said...

Ah! The Ixoras! They're the beauty! In south, it's offered to Siva especially and it's a bliss to see it in full bloom, I agree! I see the wasps were too busy with their Spring rut that they didn't notice you :P.
Ah! As usual, I love your butterfly shots! Awesome, Kanak!

Stephanie said...

Hi Kanak, we have Ixora here too. They look amazing when they are in full bloom. The butterflies really know where to get good stuff!

Kanak Hagjer said...

Chandramouli/Stephanie, thanks. Love the other colours too! I hope I can get more butterflies on my Ixora!

Prospero said...

I love the Ixora shrub, too. They had planted these at the City Hall, and they were just lovely. Sadly, they re-organized the beds, and got rid of them. I don't have any myself, so I'll just have to come here to see them! Keep photographing those insects, they deserve to have their moments of glory.

shailaja said...

I would like to add another interesting bit to what Chandramouli has said above. Ixora grows wild on the west coast of India and, I believe, the Portuguese took it from Goa and introduced it to the West. 'x' in Portuguese is pronounced as 'sh'. Ixora is, therefore, Ishora!

Kanak Hagjer said...

I will, Prospero. I love them to distraction!! My next post will be on dragonflies. I spent an afternoon photographing them today. I'm so happy to read your comment regarding the insects.
Too bad about the Ixora in your city. About viewing them here...oh you're very welcome!!

Shailaja, thanks for that interesting bit of information. I'd read about these plants growing in the wild in the west coast but I wasn't aware of the pronunciation, the Portuguese one.

Another website had this info that--- Because the flowers were offered to Iswar, the flowers came to be known as Ixora.
Always love to have you stop by. Thanks once again.