The Jamaican Poinsettia at the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens

Euphorbia punicea, aka Jamaican Poinsettia, is popular for its showy red flower bracts. Flowering in fall, winter, spring and early summer, its flowering bracts range from crimson to scarlet to pinkish- orange. This shrub is native to the central and western areas of Jamaica. The species can be quite variable in its leaf size and color. The…

The Panama Rose at the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens

Rondeletia odorata, aka Panama-rose, Fragrant Rondeletia, Rondeletia, or Careicillo de Monte is a species of flowering plant in the coffee family, Rubiaceae.  It is native to Panama and Cuba. It thrives in tropical and subtropical weather. This plant is a shrub or small tree growing up to 6 to 10 feet tall. The rough, leathery leaves are oppositely arranged and measure up to two inches long. The inflorescence is a cluster…

The Calathea warscewiczii at the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens

Calathea warscewiczii,  aka Zebra Plant, is native to Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Calathea warscewiczii is a beautiful plant for shaded areas in a tropical humid garden. A ‘prayer plant’ relative and a member of the Marantaceae family, when the night falls, this plant has a curious habit of folding up its leaves as if two hands were placed…

The Brown Basilisk Lizard at the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens

The Brown Basilisk or Striped Basilisk (Basiliscus vittatus; in some areas referred to as “common basilisk”) is one species of basilisk lizard. Basiliscus is a genus of large corytophanid lizards, commonly known as basilisks, which are endemic to southern Mexico, Central America, and northern South America. The Brown Basilik is native to Panama, Belize, northwestern Colombia and Costa Rica, but has been introduced into the U.S. state of Florida as a feral species. The males have a crest. The Basiliks are agile lizards…