Love You Some Lemon Lollipop – June 11, 2020

I’ve been growing this plant for probably 35 years. A nurseryman friend introduced it to me, saying that his customers were buying it as fast as he could bring them into the sales area.

I liked it as much as those customers did, too. You’ll see it on the cover of my latest book, Lone Star Gardening.

There’s something really cheerful about lemon lollipop in a home garden.

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Facts to know…
Botanic name: Pachystachys lutea.
Name is from Greek “pachys” for “thick” and “stachys” for “ear of corn.”
Common names: Lemon lollipop, golden shrimp plant.
Native home: Peru.
Uses in Texas landscapes: Tropical annual (winter-hardy only in Gulf Coast and South Texas Zones 10 and 11).
Best in part shade (protection from afternoon sun).
Best landscape uses: Large patio pots in center of mixed plantings or in beds in front of, or alongside coleus or crotons of contrasting colors.

Lemon lollipop’s botanical names derive from the Greek words for “thick” and “ear of corn.”

Blooms non-stop all summer and fall.
Responds well to water-soluble, high-nitrogen fertilizers applied in diluted solutions every week or two. Leaves will always appear lighter green, however.
No serious insect or disease problems.

Lemon lollipop is available currently in nurseries and gardening centers. Buy a few now to perk up your plantings for the hot weather ahead.

Posted by Neil Sperry
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