Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Cuphea hyssopifolia - Mexican Heather

Cuphea hyssopifolia (Mexican Heather, False Heather) is a densely branched shrub.  It produces small, trumpet-shaped flowers with six spreading lavender petals extruding from green calyx tubes. 

 
Leaves are elliptical, bright green and glossy.  The dainty trumpet-shaped fowers appear in the leaf axils along the many fine stems.

 Flowers are lavender or pink-purple and blooms profusely. 

 
This is a hardy shrub. It self-seeds easily and can become rather invasive.
Flowers are attractive to butterflies and bees. In fact bees absolutely love them.



Flowers are attractive butterflies and bees. In fact bees absolutely love them.


 
 
The bee's head is completely submerged in the flowers.


Butterflies find this false heather irresistible too. 
 
 
 Peablue butterfly (Lampides boeticus) with the wings open displaying the blues on the upper surface of the wings.

 
 
 

 
It is a field day, out in the sunshine siping nectar.

 
 
This tiny butterfly is spoilt for choice in nectar paradise.

21 comments:

  1. I have this plant in the garden! They are small but beautiful as borders!

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    1. Lovely as groundcover too. If they do not look their best, one can simply trim it and the new growth is as good as ever - the plant looks completely rehabilitated.

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  2. I find this actually really enjoy hearing.
    nicely played with the sharpness / depth course and really beautiful colors. The butterfly is also very nicely recorded.

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    1. Thanks Helma. This butterfly is rather tiny so it was actually quite difficult to take sharp images. Thankfully it stayed still long enough in one place for me to snap away.

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  3. The collaborative show of Peablue Butterfly and Mexican Heather is simply fascinating. I’d like to the butterfly flitting from one flower to another in person.

    Yoko

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    1. The peablue butterfly seems to be taking dainty sips from these tiny flowers. I do wonder why it didn't visit a large flower and enjoy its fill at one go.

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  4. Oh the colour so vivid! This is such an attractive cuphea. Wonderful pic of the bee and butterfly. You have a wonderful Sunday!!

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    1. Many years ago, I saw some very large cuphea flowers in Fraser Hills and was inspired. I tried various ways to get large flowers from mine but they only got marginally larger and are still half the size of the Fraser Hills variety. It could be the cooler weather or its a different species altogether.

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    2. Maybe different species. Btw, I like the orange bougainvillea in your banner!

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    3. Bougainvilleas are still one of my top favourites. Unfortunately, the flowers just get washed off with our harsh tropical showers. Then there's the sweeping up to do. Sigh!

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    4. Haha... bougainvillea blooms are much bigger also ;-) But right now I am sure your garden is filled with many beautiful flowers. I notice many garden plants around my neighbourhood and even the trees along the road are blooming profusely.

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    5. Yes, such glorious blooms and almost leafless. I thought of featuring them in my next post.

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  5. It's good you were able to get the upper side of those butterflies. They seem to be very elusive for me, not opening the wings for me to capture. I guess you caught them early in the morning.

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    1. I do agree that most times they have their wings closed upright which is a trait of butterflies compared to moths. It wasn't that early, around 9.00am. Later in the day, none of them displayed open wings.

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  6. Such little flowers but they do attract the bees and butterflies. Lovely capture!

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    1. The flowers might be small but they still have the power of attraction is not reduced.

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  7. The color is spectacular. And those sweet blooms have such a lovely shape.

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  8. Beautiful photos, both the butterflies and the flowers are lovely. I am no good at taking photos of insects, they fly away too quickly, I prefer taking photos of plants, they might move around in the wind but at least they don’t suddenly take off!

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  9. Stunning photography! I love the close up of the bees and butterfly. What a beautiful plant. By the way I have a new URL and my blog has changed from blossomhideaway.blogspot.com to homegrowndelight.blogspot.com. Please update your reading list and sidebar. Stop by when you have a chance. Have a great week! :)

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  10. Your images are splendid. I have had Mexican heather before but it is an annual here. Thanks bunches for the visit.

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