April 23, 2016
Every once in a while we like to show a few plants that are not your ordinary Mississippi landscape variety. In the past we’ve shown you odd plants called Buddha Hand and Mother of Thousands. Here is another fantastically curious hybrid, called fatshedra, which comes from a cross of Japanese fatsia and English ivy. This slow growing selection is called Angyo Star and has beautiful richly green sweetgum-like leaves with creamy white borders. Because of its ivy heritage, it’s called a semi-upright grower, and needs a little support. And then there’s Dragon Fruit…the name just sounds mysterious and fierce. While the plant itself is not that interesting, the vivid pink fruit with soft green tipped spines draws plenty of attention. The dragon fruit itself is the real treat and is so easy to enjoy. Simply place on a cutting board and slice right through. The inner flesh is creamy white and speckled with black seeds. I like to take a spoon and scoop directly from the fruit. Ummm, while not very sweet, I think it tastes like a combination between a kiwi and a pear. At first glance I know you’re thinking that this prickly pear cactus belongs out west, but in fact it is a Mississippi native. These prickly pears are setting flower buds that will open in a few weeks. Be a little adventurous this year and try an unusual plant or two in your garden and landscape. I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman and I’ll see you next time on Southern Gardening.