Bird of Paradise in zone 7

alleyAugust 21, 2007


I'm looking for some advice (I am also asking on the tropicals forum). I live between Weatherford and Fort Worth (west of Fort Worth). I have just moved here and not sure of the weather pattern (and I know it is strange for this year). I believe that I am in zone 7b (bordering 8). I just bought a fairly big Bird of Paradise (about 3 feet tall). Has anybody had luck with them in the ground in this area? Also, is the middle of August too late to plant it in the ground? Should I just leave it in the pot and bring it in during cooler weather?

Thanks for any help.


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denisew(z8 TX)

There is a yellow flowering bird of paradise growing successfully at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. I would think it should be okay planted in a protected area (from freezing temps). If you have the orange one, you will probably need to bring it to a protected area - like in your garage) during the winter or treat it like an annual.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2007 at 2:00PM
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Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinina gilliesii) does very well in our region. I would wait until the worst heat of the summer is over, and then plant it in a place where it will get some protection from the northern winter wind. I planted mine last year in late September and it's doing very well. The C. gilliesii is more acclimated to this part of Texas, so be careful that that's the one you put in the ground.

Carla in Rowlett

    Bookmark   August 21, 2007 at 3:23PM
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I have the giant white bird of paradise. I found another one at the hudson oaks walmart (it was twice the price, but they price matched it to the one in weatherford). The local nursery said that there was a bird of paradise that was hardy to texas (I don't remember the latin name, but I'm guessing it is the one mentioned by carla). I don't think that the one I have will survive here. I may experiment and plant one of them anyway.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2007 at 3:47PM
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lac1361(z9a Lake Charles, LA)

The problem with common names is illustrated by this thread. Bird of paradise, white bird of paradise, giant bird,(Strelitzia Nicolai) is a member of the same family of bananas, gingers, and heliconia. It is an upright growing plant with successively larger leaves and can get upwards of 15 feet. It resembles a banana and produces a purple and white bloom; typically, in the fall in the deep south. The yellow bird of paradise referred to by denisew is, I think, also known as Pride of Barbados and is a shrub like plant. Completely different family of plants. The white bird of paradise is only marginally hardy in Zone 9. It won't make it in a lower zone. Temps down to 28 or so only. The yellow bird is more hardy.


    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 11:53AM
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denisew(z8 TX)

Here is the one I'm talking about:

Here is the information about it from Texas Smartscape website:
Bird of Paradise
Botanical Name: Caesalpinia gilliesii
Plant Type: Ornamental Tree
Plant Form: Bushy
Light Required: Full Sun
Water Demand: Low
Plant Height (ft.): 10'
Plant Spread (ft.): 6'
Ornamental Value: Yellow/Red
Months Of Bloom: Apr - Sept
Native Texas Plant: Adapted
Deciduous/Evergreen: Deciduous
Wildlife Value: Butterflies, Hummingbirds
Notes: Small shrubby tree with lacy foliage. Blooms bright yellow flowers with red stamens all spring and summer.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 9:57PM
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Wow, that is beautiful. I should get one of those. I have the strelitzia nicolai plant. I know it is a tropical plant. I should be living on a tropical island somewhere with all the beautiful plants (used to live in South Africa and I'm used to those plants--speaking of, the strelitzia is native to there). I bought 2 pots. One had 2 plants in it, and the other had 3. I was just wondering (since it was outside and labeled for planting in the yard and not a house plant) if anybody else in my zone had planted them and had luck with it. I figured the people in the Texas forum were experts on stuff in this area. I'm fairly new to gardening (at least more than daylilies and cannas and iries).

    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 10:42PM
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Then there is Pride of Barbados (Caesalpinia pulcherrima or Poinciana pulcherrima) which would most not be hardy in north Texas. Her in Zone 8b they need to be protected in the winter.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2007 at 5:50AM
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Sorry if the post above didn't make sense, I obviously can't type that early in the morning, LOL.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2007 at 8:59AM
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