Part 1: A lot of pics around Orlando Florida April 2011

tropicalzone7(7b)April 21, 2011

Just got back from Orlando, Florida, and of couse I was taking pictures of all the plants. I was very happy to see that the majority of the tender plants had no signs of damage despite the terrible winter.

If you have a slow computer, some of these pics might take a while to load.

Heres a tulip tree right outside the Portofino Bay Hotel. A very northern tree, but it is still somewhat common in northern and central Florida.

Some olive trees at the portofino bay hotel. They didnt have any olives on them, but they looked pretty good.

I was pretty impressed with how well the coconut palms inside the airport were doing.

Some bamboo. Not sure of the exact species

A nice mix of some bald cypress and washingtonias

The screw pines were all looking healthy and pretty much unfazed by the cold this past winter in Florida

This Variegated Talipariti tiliaceum has been in its spot for many years and it looks really good. No noticeable damage from the cold this past winter

Pretty much all of the foxtails I saw in Universal Studios were looking great! Even the ones that were not in a great microclimate, still looked healthy. This was one of the better looking Foxtails.

A nice looking tree fern

Beautiful Caryota (not sure of the species).

More foxtail palms looking nice!

Another nice looking caryota

The easter lilies were in bloom (probably planted there for the holidays)

Bromeliads on a Foxtail palm

Pindo palm looking nice

Loquats were fruiting and looking very healthy

I didnt see any bougainvilleas damaged from the winter and many were blooming well

I also didnt see any severely damaged bismarkias (a few did have smaller crowns than usual). Some looked very healthy.

Caryota mitis was pretty common in the Jurassic Park area.

Gigantic Sengal Date palm (Phoenix reclinata)

Some tropical water lilies doing very well

Trachycarpus seem to do well in Central Florida in shade and sun.

Enormous bamboo!

These bottle palms have seen better days, but at least they survived the winter!

A very typical southern scene if you get rid of the bamboo and add some Live oak.

Mediterranean fan palms looking very nice at night

Same for the philodendron

I cant think of the name of this tree right now, but it was looking nice and healthy

The squirrels were very used to people and actually came to me (probably looking for food). It was only about 2 feet way.

A tall bismarkia

More healthy foxtails

This one foxtail might not have been given protection because it is not looking good. It has new fronds coming up and with the extremely hot weather Florida, it might survive.

The other foxtails right next to the damaged one were looking great

Huge southern magnolias with some blooms

Mexican petunias were blooming well

Some young oleanders by the "lagoon"

A large schefflera untouched by the cold this past winter.

Very healthy Norfolk island Pines

A nice and large Yucca Rostrata.

Thunbergia grandiflora. They are fast growers and very beautiful vines.

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Crinum flower

Philodendron bloom

Philodendron selloum

Large pygmy palms

Another huge sengal date palm

Everglades palm and bismarkia

Majesty palm in shade (possibly Dwarf majesty palm??)


Cast iron plants

A Great White Heron

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Those washies around the Hard Rock Cafe are beauties Alex, know you had a good time!

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 3:55PM
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I know, the washys looked amazing there! I really did have a great time! The weather was so beautiful and so were the plants!
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 4:45PM
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Awesome pics, I love the Bismarkia. And everything else I can't grow here.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 9:57PM
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Bismarkias are one of my favorite palms! And I was definitely thinking of what my yard would look like if I could grow half of the plants I took pics of! Wish I lived in such a warm climate!
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 10:04PM
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brooklyngreg(7a NYC coastal plain)


Looks great and fun. Did you give the squirrels food? Are loquats used in Asian food?

I want to move to Florida, it warmer, and pleasent but everyone says the economy is really hurting down there and its hard to find a good job.

Have a blessed Good Friday.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2011 at 10:54AM
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I wanted to give the squirrels something, but I didnt have anything to give them at the time! They definitely were looking for something! My guess is that the economy isn't much worse there than it is here , but things will be better in a few years and that would be a better time to make a move.
Im pretty sure loquats are used in Asian Food. I've never had one, but I hear they taste pretty good, and I also here that they can survive our winters and stay green all year long! They wont fruit over here, but those evergreen leaves are hard to beat!
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2011 at 12:24PM
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Very nice pictures I have alarge tulip tree in my bAck yard. I didn't know they grow in Florida

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 5:36PM
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Thanks alot Alex for embedding those bismarkias in my head. I finally broke down and ordered one. Now I have to figure out how to overwinter it when it gets big.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 6:02PM
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Dennis, Tulip trees have a very wide native range. They are mostly temperate trees, but you can occasionally find them in the wild in Northern and Central Florida. Im pretty sure they are semi-evergreen in the warmer parts of Florida.

Chadec, Bismarkias are so beautiful. I had a potted one, but I kept it too dry over the winter and it died indoors. When you keep it inside, remember to mist it every once and a while and keep it by a nice sunny window. The blue fronds will catch people's attention at any size!

Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 7:42PM
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mremensnyder(z9b Orlando)

Wow, amazing photos, thank you for sharing. The tulip tree is native as far south as the deciduous temperate forests of Central Florida. I have seen it just south of Sanford on 17-92 in a small strand of deciduous forest (maybe the actual southern limit of its range) and it does briefly lose its leaves along with the other trees. There is another one in a shopping center a bit north of downtown Orlando (in Maitland) and it also loses its leaves, but I can tell it is not too happy with the climate. I believe the tree shown in tropicalzone7's first photo may actually be a sycamore tree, which is common in the Orlando area, but not much further south. As for palms, that really is a great microclimate in the Universal area.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 4:30AM
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Someone else said it might be a sycamore and I think your right! Thanks for looking, Universal definitely has a great microclimate!

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 1:21PM
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karate626(7A Maryland)

I was just at Universal Studios for spring break! Just got back home a minute before midnight on Easter! I enjoyed the landscaping just as much as the rides and shows! It's like a botanical garden in a way but most of the plants are not labeled.

I was amazed by the size of the sengal date palms! It has so many large trunks. Does anyone have any guess to how old they are?

There was also an odd looking smaller tree near (next too) the pond with the tropical lily pads in Jurassic park that I thought was neat. It had no or very few leafs and a few exotic flowers that were white with very stringy petals. I wish I knew the name of that one.

The star (confederate) jasmine plants planted at the edges of the parking garages smelled amazing (to me anyway) when on the moving walk way.

I also noticed a few sago palms with ripe nuts in the planting near all the flags by the animal show and E.T. ride. The sagos looked very strange. The nuts had brown fuzz all over them. I thought that was intriguing. I wonder what the purpose of the fuzz is.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 6:51PM
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Thanks for looking T.J.! I think I know which plants your talking about. The tree in jurassic park by the ponds with white (almost paintbrush-looking) flowers is called a Shaving Brush Tree also known as Pseudobombax ellipticum. Here's a pic of the one in Universal...

The star Jasmine were really nice! They were all in bloom. I didn't notice a fragrance (I did have a cold) but the gardenia were impossible not to smell! You can easily smell the gardenia bushes 30 feet away at least!

I didnt notice any unusual fuzz on the Sagos but I did see a lot making seeds.

The sengal date palms (probably a cross between sengal dates and canary island dates) is at least as old as the park which opened in 1990 (which means they were in that spot for about 21 years and they were probably already at least 10-20 years old when they got them). So I think its safe to say that the sengal date hybrids at Universal are at least 40 years old and have been in there current spots for about 20 years.

Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 8:03PM
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brooklyngreg(7a NYC coastal plain)

Thanks for the info Alex.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2011 at 11:57AM
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