Wildflowers: Purple composites

wildflowers, goatweed, siam weed, cupid's shaving brush, tropical fleabane

Top (Left to right): Siam weed, Chromolaena odorata & Goat weed, Ageratum conyzoides

Bottom(Left to right): Cupid’s shaving brush, Emilia sonchifolia &
Tropical fleabane, Cyanthillium cinereum

Plants with small, fluffy purple or white flowers. It is found almost anywhere, favoured by beekeepers for the pollen and nectar it produces. It is grown to prevent Lalang growth but it can crowd out native plants. It is poisonous to vertebrates

Status: Least concern, invasive

Habit: Herbaceous

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, ground cover

Pollinators:  Large bees, small bees, butterflies, flies, wasps

Soil: Sandy, loam, organic soils

Moisture: Well drained soils

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Wildflowers: Monkey’s potato

wildflower, monkey potato, rimanji, plectranthus monostachyus

Monkey potato ~ Rimanji

Plectranthus monostachyus

An upright plant from the mint family. It has oval leaves that occur in pairs opposite each other, and at right angles to the following pairs. It produces small purple flowers at the top end of stems. The common name comes from nodules found on the roots of the mature plant.

Status: Least concern, Introduced (Tropical Africa)

Habit: Annual herbaceous

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, ground cover, host plant for butterflies (Junonia orithya)

Pollinators:  Large bees, small bees, butterflies

Soil: Loam, clay, organic soils

Moisture: Well drained soils

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Touch-me-nots

Touch-me-nots ~ Pokok semalu

Mimosa pudica

A creeping plant from the pea flower family. Its leaves respond to touch by drooping or closing up in defense. Each leaf is a compound leaf made up of many leaflets. Its flowers are purple-pink, ball-shaped and form clusters at the ends of stalks. It produces pods which bear seeds.

Status: Least concern, Introduced (Central and South America)

Habit: Annual

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, nitrogen fixer

Pollinators: Large bees, small bees, butterflies

Soil: Loam, organic soils

Moisture: Moist soil

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Wildflowers: Elephant’s foot

Elephant’s foot~ Tutup bumi

Elephantopus scaber

A plant from the daisy or sunflower family that grows well in shady areas. Its leaves are arranged in a circle at the lower part of the stem. It has tiny pale purple flowers at the top of erect stalks. Its fruits are small and dry with hair-like structures to attach to animals or people.

Status: Least concern, Native

Habit: Perennial

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, ground cover

Pollinators: Butterflies, large bees

Soil: Sandy

Moisture: Well drained soils

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Star of Bethlehem

Star of Bethlehem ~ Dedalu cina

Hippobroma longiflora

An attractive wildflower, originally introduced as an ornamental plant. However, the plant’s sap is poisonous. Its leaves have an elongated oval shape, a pointed tip and tooth-like margins. They are arranged in a spiral at the stem base. A single star-shaped flower with five petals grows on a stalk.

Status: Least concern, Introduced (Jamaica)

Habit: Perennial

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators

Pollinators: Possibly moths

Soil: Clay

Moisture: Damp soils

Shade: Full shade, partial shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Tridax daisy

Tridax daisy ~ Kancing baju

Tridax procumbens

A common roadside plant that does not need a lot of soil or water to grow. It is a plant that helps nourish soils. Its leaves are arrow-shaped and have tooth-like margins. The compound flowers are yellow and white, at the top of long stems. Fruits are small and dry and have hair-like structures.

Status: Least concern, Introduced (Central America)

Habit: Perennial

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, ground cover

Pollinators: Butterflies, bees, thrips, flies

Soil: Sand, loam, organic soils

Moisture: Dry soil, well drained soil

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Beggarticks

Beggarticks ~ Rumput juala

Bidens alba, Bidens pilosa

A plant from the daisy or sunflower family. It is used by beekeepers as a source of nectar and pollen for bees. Its lower leaves are simple but upper leaves are compound with 4-6 leaflets. Bidens alba has 5-8 ‘petals’ longer than 1cm long, Bidens pilosa has 4-7 ‘petals’ that are less than 1 cm long.

Status: Least concern, Introduced (Central/South America)

Habit: Annual herbaceous

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, ground cover

Pollinators:  Bees, butterflies, thrips

Soil: Sand, clay, loam, organics soils

Moisture: Moist, well drained and dry soils

Shade: No shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Waterwillow

Waterwillow

Justicia procumbens

A plant that grows very close to the ground in open, grassy areas. Its leaves are elliptic with tiny hairs on the leaf margin. Its pale pink flowers cluster on top of a fuzzy structure at the end of the stem. It is the host plant of the beautiful Peacock Pansy butterfly

Status: Least concern, Introduced (India)

Habit: Perennial herbaceous

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, butterfly host plant (Junonia orithya)

Pollinators:  Butterflies, bees, flies

Soil: Loam, sand, clay

Moisture: Moist soils

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Milkwort

Milkwort ~ Jukut rindik

Polygala paniculata

An upright plant with very small leaves and flowers. The leaves are very narrow and arranged alternately on the stem. Its flowers are white, bloom in  long clusters and produce black hairy seeds. Its common name, milkwort, is attributed to the belief that cows that eat more of it will produce more milk.

Status: Least concern, Introduced (Tropical America, Caribbean)

Habit: Annual herbaceous

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Unknown

Pollinators:  Possibly large bees and small flies

Soil: Clay, loam

Moisture: Moist, well-drained soil, does not tolerate dry areas

Shade: No shade

Related posts

Wildflowers: Coromandel

Coromandel ~ Rumput Israel

Asystasia gangetica

A relative of mint that grows close to ground in sunny and shady areas. It has white flowers with purple markings on the lowermost petal that acts as a landing pad for bees to rest as they feed. Its dark green, simple leaves occur in pairs opposite each other. It produces seeds in club-shaped capsules

Status: Least concern, Introduced (India)

Habit: Perennial herbaceous

Cultivation: Planted by seeds or transplanting

Ecological Function: Attracts pollinators, ground cover, host plant for butterflies (Junonia orithya)

Pollinators: Butterflies, bees

Soil: Loam, organic soils

Moisture: Moist soil

Shade: Partial shade, no shade

Related posts