Special collection: Abutilons

ABUTILON HYBRIDS

There are some plants with common names that are much more descriptive than the botanical name. The Abutilon is a case in point. Look it up in any book and you will find it with a whole host of appealing and evocative pseudonyms - Chinese lantern, Indian mallow, Parlour maple, and Flowering maple.  Abutilons are quick-growing, decorative shrubs, small trees, perennials and annuals which are evergreen and always full of flowers. Their lantern or bell like flowers are quite distinctive and range in colour from white, pink and yellow to orange or red often with deeper coloured veins. The leaf shapes also vary, the most attractive being the heart and maple shapes. The variegated variety is particularly striking.

This showy shrub that was once favoured by the Victorians is coming back into fashion.

The reason why these upright growing, neat shrubs are being rediscovered is that they make attractive, free-flowering garden specimens and are ideal for low maintenance gardens. Abutilons grow easily and quickly in most types of garden soil, preferring positions that receive full morning sun.

They need regular watering in summer and to be kept moist in winter. Give them a good application of fertiliser in spring and then once after that during the growing season so that the foliage doesn’t develop at the expense of the flowers. I prune the abutilons in my garden in early spring, mid summer (ie January) and again in April.  They are always in bloom so one has to be ruthless with the secateurs as this encourages dense growth and masses of blooms. 

Abutilons can be used instead of trees in small gardens, as the mature plant is about 2m high and wide. Some, like the variegated Abutilon pictum ‘Thompsonii’, can even be trained as a small tree. The lobed maple like leaves and orange flushed, salmon pink flowers make it quite a garden feature.

Abutilon megapotamicum from Brazil is a more prostrate, trailing variety and can be used as a ground cover or to cascade over walls.  I also train those in my own garden over obelisks and trellisses.   It spreads about 1,2 m, has deep green heart shaped leaves and yellow flowers with red calyces and blooms for nine months of the year.

For those interested in medicinal plants the root, leaves and bark of Abutilon indicum contain properties that soothe and protect the mucous membranes of the respiratory and urinary systems. A decoction of the root can be used for bronchitis as well as a mouthwash for toothache and sore and infected gums.

We started off the season with "just too many abutilons!"  It seems that demand has exceeded supply; hence a short supply of just too many varieties.  We will update as new stock comes into the nursery. 

OUR ABUTILON PLANTS WERE "NURSED" BY A WELL-MEANING STAFF MEMBER AND ALL LOOK WORSE FOR WEAR.  UNFORTUNATELY NO PLANTS IN STOCK UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.  20 October 2016.

 

Abutilon megapotamicum

Description: An exotic shrub / trailer with arching shoots and bell shaped yellow tipped red flowers all year. I grow it on an obelisk or trellis or trailing down a wall. Easy to shape as you like it! Reputedly survives winters in the Western Transvaal so I have termed it very hardy.

Average height: 2m trailing
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon pictum Thompsonii

Description: A lovely shrub with mottled yellow leaves and orange lantern like flowers. Lovely against a high wall if you dont want to use climbers.

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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Amiti

Description: A tall multi purpose shrub with bell shaped off white or cream flowers all year. Plants still small should be ready in mid January

Average height: 1.6m
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Apricot belle

Description: A lovely soft apricot flared flower. Substance. A new hybrid.

Average height: 1.2m
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R75.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Ashford Red

Description: A multi purpose exotic shrub with HUGE bell shaped flowers all year. A real stunner.

Average height: 2m
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R75.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Brombeere

Description: A multi purpose exotic shrub with bell shaped deep plum flowers that attract birds and bees. Prune regularly to shape.

Average height: 1.2m to be confirmed
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R75.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Buttercup

Description: NEW. An upright plant which would probably make a very good standard. Open pendant bell shaped dark yellow flowers. Striking.

Average height: 2m
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Leuchtfeuer

Description: A multi purpose shrub with large orange apricot flowers that attract bees and birds. Prune regularly to shape. Likes acid soil.

Average height: 1m
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R75.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Marion

Description: A dynamic persimon colour - an old favourite but always a show stopper.

Average height: 1.6m
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Red trumpet

Description: A bush type abutilon with orangey red flowers. Well shaped and floriferous.

Average height: 80cm
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Satin pink bell

Description: NEW! A gorgeous large open bright pink bloom. Strong grower.

Average height: 180cm
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Sea shells

Description: An exotic shrub with arching shoots and bell shaped dusky pink flowers all year. Lovely in a mixed border.

Average height: 60cm
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Sienna

Description: A gorgeous coral red named after one of our feisty granddaughters. I saw this at a nursery and refused to leave until I had a plant in my car!

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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Silver Belle

Description: An upright shrub with flared textured white flowers.

Average height: 1.8m
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Wisley red

Description: A trailing exotic shrub with arching shoots. Large lobed dark green leaves, small skirted orange veined flowers.

Average height: 1.8m
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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Lilifee

Description: A multi purpose shrub with veined lilac pink flowers. Easy to shape as you like!

Average height: 1m
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R75.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.

Abutilon: Sunny

Description: A multi purpose shrub with coppery orange cup shaped flowers that attract birds and bees. Prune regularly to shape.(Incorrectly named Copper apricot)

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R60.00  |  This item is currently out of stock.