Thursday, May 23, 2019

Gladiolus Dalenii, Parrot Glads

  Rich rice planters on the Carolina coast showcased their wealth in opulent gardens in the antebellum period, introducing a variety of exotic imported plants to the American continent.  Among  them were bright parrot gladiolas from Africa.  

  Eventually the glads escaped their plantation homes to appear on the humble roadsides all along the coast.  At the end of May, they make a flamboyant show visible a mile away, free to rich and poor alike.   

  We found these all along South Island Road — a road once lined with wealthy plantations — near our house, and ends at the Intercoastal Waterway and the ferry to Cat Island.  

  I bet you can guess — hummingbirds love them!  


  1. That's interesting. I bet they made quite a show in the gardens of past years. Interesting to note they are now scattered about the road side and know doubt looking pretty.

  2. Don't they grow from bulbs or corms? How do they escape? They are lovely.

    1. I thought about that, too. One possibility is the flooding that occurs a lot here moves the corms about. This makes sense because they are mostly growing in ditches on the roadsides.

  3. Beautiful flowers and an interesting history! They look quite tall.

  4. That really is a horrible swampy area.
    Great to see from photos that the gladiolas seeds kept producing. Adds colour to that messy swamp and maybe "gator country????

  5. They would certainly attract your attention and it is good that they provide nectar for hummingbirds. And speaking of hummingbirds, one is feeding in the backyard right now!

  6. What a beautiful sight it must be. I do wonder how they have spread, if only they could!

  7. What a lovely addition to the land!

  8. A splash of colour amongst the greenery.

  9. I didn't know that's what they were called, but they are so very pretty.