growing echium pininana in Tampa, Florida - Knowledgebase Question

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Question by myheartbelon
January 10, 2009
I would like to know if you know of anyone growing echium pininanas in Florida. I grew some from seed in Michigan. Obviously, since I was in Zone 6A, they had to be overwintered. But since it is tropical here, wouldn't they do okay? Would it be to hot to grow them here? I haven't seen them anyplace.
Thanks for any input you can give me.

Tamara Fox


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Answer from NGA
January 10, 2009

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Echium pininana is native to the Canary Islands and can take the heat, sunshine and humidity in Florida. It is not frost hardy so taking it indoors when you lived in Michigan was a very good idea! Plant it in a sunny spot or at least where it will get 4 hours of sunshine each day. They grow best with regular waterings but if you're on a water conservation program you can water less frequently but deeply. If the leaves begin to droop, you'll need to water thoroughly, but after the initial watering, your Echium should do well for several days before it requires water again. Although Echium is not prohibited in Florida, it does tend to send seeds all over so you may have new plants popping up all over your yard. Be on the lookout and you'll avert potential problems.

Best wishes with your landscape.

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