Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, and the Desert Southwest

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Anisacanthus quadrifidus var. wrightii: Wright's Desert Honeysuckle / Flame Honeysuckle

Description
Form: Shrub.
Leaf retention: Deciduous. May die to ground in freezes.
Growth rate: Slow to rapid, depending on water and soil compactness.
Mature Size: 3-5' high and wide.
Flowers: Orange to red, tubular, up to 2" long, usually pointing upward, clustered on ends of main and lateral stems.
Bloom: Spring and fall.
Fruit: Brown capsules with black seeds.
Leaves: Green, lance-shaped.
Stems: No thorns.
Wildlife: Attracts hummingbirds, large butterflies. Caterpillar food plant for some butterfly species. Browsed by rabbits.
Toxic / Danger: No.
Origin: Texas and Northern Mexico.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 7b-11.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun to light shade. More sun produces more blooms.
Water once established: Monthly. Supplemental water improves performance.
Soil: Well drained, pH 6.1-7.8 (slightly acidic to slightly alkaline). Compacted soil slows growth.
Prune: In late winter, shear to encourage new growth. In freezing winters, cut to ground before spring. Can be pruned into a hedge in regions without freezes.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Seed or cuttings. May reseed in favorable conditions.
Uses: Ornamental, wildlife attractor, low hedge.

Comments
Other common names include Flame Acanthus, Hummingbird Bush and Mexican Flame. Long blooming. An excellent butterfly and hummingbird shrub for a rabbit-protected environment. The butterfly is a Cloudless Sulphur.








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