Sunday, August 15, 2010

Madagascar Periwinkle

Catharanthus roseus

Also called Vinca rosea; is a fast growing, erect, evergreen, shrubby perennial in tropical climates, reaching up to 4 x 3 feet with the record being 7 x 3 feet. In cooler climates it is often grown as an annual summer bedding or container plant, though tends to be much smaller in size though blooming every bit as abundantly.
The Madagascar Periwinkle is native to where else? Madagascar!
The oval, glossy deep green foliage is up to 3 x 1 or rarely 4 x 1.5 inches in size.
The flowers up to 2 inches across are rose-pink with deep rose pink centers and bloom from late spring into autumn as an annual or all year in tropical climates.
There are modern cultivars that have flowers of other colors as well including white and red or a combination of colors.
Prefers a sunny to partially shaded sheltered site and moist, well drained, fertile soil. It is hardy as a perennial from zone 10 and warmer. In zones 4 through 9 it can be planted outdoors as soon as the threat of frost is past in the spring. The Madagascar Periwinkle thrives in warm to hot, humid climates. It is resistant to heat, drought, deer and is also very salt tolerant.
Propagation is from softwood or semi-ripe cuttings taken during summer and also seed sown during spring.

* Photos taken on July 20 2010 in Columbia, MD

* photo of unknown internet source

* photos taken on June 10 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photo taken on Jan 2011 @ Deerfield Beach Arboretum, Florida

* photos taken on July 15 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Aug 31 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 25 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Oct 3 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 5 2018 in Columbia, MD

'Little Bright Eyes'
Dwarf with white flowers with deep pink-red centers.

'Little Pinkie'
Dwarf with deep pink-red flowers

Reaches up to 1.5 feet in height.
Very heavy blooming, it bears white ( eyed pink ) flowers.
It is even tougher and more heat resistant.

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