The Asparagus Pea (also known by the botanical name Psophocarpus tetragonolobus) is a small, decorative plant with a naturally low growing habit. When I first heard of the Asparagus Pea, I was so excited by the very idea of this plant. I can remember reading the description over and over: ‘a vegetable with a delicious taste that was somewhere between asparagus and pea’.
Aerangis collum-cygni is a miniature to small sized orchid species that grows in humid forests, moist woodlands, and rainforests. These plants also make themselves at home in areas that were once forests, in regions where the forest’s native trees were roughly removed to make way for the plantations that replaced them. Aerangis collum-cygni can be found growing as epiphytes in: Cameroon, Gabon, Tanzania, Uganda, Zaire, Zambia, and other areas across tropical Africa.
Angraecum cultriforme is an epiphytic orchid species from Tanzania, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and South Africa. These small sized orchids grow in evergreen forests and thickets, they’re often found growing near rivers. Angraecum cultriforme plants grow as an epiphytes; these orchids tend to grow near the base of a tree, close to ground level, but plants also grow upon twigs and small branches.
Melons (also known by their botanical name Cucumis melo) are tender, sweet tasting fruits that can be successfully grown from seeds, in the UK. Sow melon seeds in springtime – from March to the middle of May. If you’re too late to sow seeds (or if you don’t have access to a glasshouse), you don’t have to miss out, as young melon plants can be purchased from many nurseries and garden centres.
Aubergines (also known as Eggplant or by the plant’s botanical name, Solanum melogena) are tender plants that need warmth and bright sunshine if they’re to thrive. Sow aubergine seeds in pots of peat-free compost, inside a heated propagator or glasshouse, from January to April. Ensure your seedlings are grown in an area that enjoys bright light.
From the end of May or beginning of June, (when there is no risk of cold temperatures or frost) if you garden in a warm area, aubergine plants can be hardened off (brought out from the glasshouse during the daytime and then taken back inside again at night for a couple of weeks), before being planted outside in a warm, bright and sunny area.
Cucumbers (also known by their botanical name – Cucumis sativus) are popular vegetables that are easy to grow and can produce a bountiful harvested of cucumbers. Cucumber plants form climbing or trailing plants that can be left to scramble horizontally over the ground or trained to grow vertically using wires, twines, or other supports.
Gardeners can choose from a range of cucumber varieties available at nurseries, garden centres, and online retailers.
Angraecum moandense is an orchid species that hails from the rainforests of a wide range of exotic, tropical locations, including: Cameroon, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, the Ivory Coast, Liberia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zaire. Plants produce small, pale greenish yellow coloured flowers, which have reflexed petals and from a distance look rather leaf-like in their appearance.
This is a miniature orchid species whose natural home is growing in amongst trees and other plants, in damp humid rainforests, where competition for space is great and plants grow close to one another, growing cheek by jowl.
Angraecum sacciferum is a miniature sized orchid species that can be found growing in the wild, over a widespread area. This orchid species is a wild plant from many locations, including: Burundi, Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Sao Tome, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zaire, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Angraecum sacciferum grows as an epiphyte – when it’s found growing upon trees, and as an lithophyte – when plants are seen growing on or over rocky or stony surfaces, in wet areas, near rivers or streams.
As we learn more about plants, we make discoveries that result in plants moving from one plant genus to another; meaning name changes are required. African violets used to be known as Saintpaulia, but their botanical name has now been changed to Streptocarpus. I’ve left this group of plants listed under their old name, so you can more easily find them.
Anthriscus sylvestris is a biennial or short lived herbaceous perennial plant, which is more commonly known as cow parsley – in the UK, at least anyway – where Anthriscus sylvestris grows as a wildflower, along roadsides, hedgerows, in grasslands and meadows.
Flowering in late spring, in May, Anthriscus sylvestris is a popular plant with bees, hoverflies, and other pollinating insects
Easily grown from seed, sown in autumn or springtime, Anthriscus sylvestris flourishes in any well-drained soil.
Chlorophytum comosum is usually harder to find than the more commonly found, variegated forms of Chlorophytum comosum. However, this all green form is easier to grow than the variegated types of spider plant. Chlorophytum comosum copes better with lower light levels and this form is more resilient than any of the variegated spider plants, so if you love spider plants but your home is not quite bright enough to grow the variegated forms successfully, you may want to seek out this green leaved form of Chlorophytum comosum.
Aerangis calantha is a miniature, epiphytic orchid species that can be found growing in a variety of locations including: the Congo, Africa, Angola, and Uganda. Before humans encroached into and altered the landscape of this orchid’s natural habitat and environment, Aerangis calantha could be found growing upon the native trees of its homelands’ landscape. Sadly many of these indigenous trees have since been cut down and removed, to create more land for farming.
Aerangis somalensis is a small sized, epiphytic orchid species, which can be found growing in various locations. Plants grow in both dry areas of woodland, as well as near streams and rivers, in Africa. The second part of this orchid species’ name – the specific epithet – derives from Somalia where this orchid is from, but this is not the only location where this orchid is found.
Aerangis verdickii is a miniature epiphytic or lithophytic orchid species, which grows both low down on rocks and high up in the branches of woodland trees, in dry forests and mountainous areas. In its native environment, this orchid species can be found growing near the tops of trees in open woodland; here Aerangis verdickii enjoys bright sunlight.
In the wild, Aerangis verdickii experiences prolonged periods of drought during autumn and winter.
Aerangis luteoalba var. rhodosticta is a miniature epiphytic orchid species that originates from Kenya and Africa. This beautiful and very distinctive miniature orchid produces attractive white, crystalline flowers, which have a bright orange-red column, or centre.
Aerangis luteoalba var. rhodosticta plants enjoy growing in warm, humid conditions, where they can enjoy bright, filtered, indirect light.
For more detailed information about the care and preferred growing conditions of Aerangis luteoalba var.
Podangis dactyloceras is a miniature orchid species, which originates from Africa, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania, and Zaire, where this orchid grows as an epiphyte, growing upon trees, near waterfalls and rivers, in evergreen rainforests.
Podangis dactyloceras is a miniature orchid species that grows best in warm to hot temperatures. These plants require a humid environment and filtered light; allow your plant’s roots to dry out between waterings.