Sunday, July 19, 2015

Heath or Heather?

Did you know the Ericaceae family is divided into two different genera of plants: heaths and heathers? Although both belong to the same family, they are botanically different and are divided into the Erica genus and the Calluna genus. The heaths belong to the Erica genus and there are approximately 4,500 species worldwide and of these 700 occur in the Cape Floral Kingdom, making them the largest family of fynbos . 

The Erica with its upright spirals of brilliant blossoms can be described, as simply elegant. The vibrant blossoms vary in shape and size from tiny to several inches in length and come in virtually all color combinations except blue. Other than heaths' greater susceptibility to cold weather, the main difference between heaths and heathers is that heaths have needlelike leaves rather than flat leaves; and come in taller shrub forms and even some small trees.

Here’s just of a few of our favorites grown here in Rainbow:

Erica Sparsa

Erica Verticillata

Erica Versicolor

Erica Baueri

Erica Baueri - White

For a glimpse of more heaths here’s a link to our Pinterest Board!

Ericas have become a welcome addition to our world of flowers!

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