THE USE OF HELICONIA × NICKERIENSIS IN LANDSCAPE DESIGN
Heliconia inflorescences and plants are of great beauty in colors and forms. In Brazil, the landscape designer Roberto Burle Marx started the heliconia use in gardens. Nowadays, this genus is used either in private or public gardens as well as cultivated for cut flower. Most of the species are vigorous plants with low maintenance requirements and present long flowering period. The objective of this study was to evaluate Heliconia × nickeriensis ornamental characteristics and management for garden use. The study was carried out at the Federal Rural University of Pernambuco (UFRPE) Heliconia Germoplasm Collection, Brazil, from January 2007 until July 2008. Heliconia × nickeriensis is described as short height plant, with quick development, dispersed type of clump architecture and open growth habit. The clump area reached 5.14 m2 at 18 months after planting (MAP), demonstrating the necessity of a large space for development. The shoots emission in the internal part of the clump permitted a complete soil coverage. The dark green leaves contrast with the yellow-orange inflorescence which are easily visualized above its foliage. The flowering period started at 9 MAP, reaching an emission of more than 17 inflorescences per clump at 17 MAP. The inflorescences kept the quality for more than 25 days after its emission in the clump. This genotype represents a good option to be used either isolated, for covering large open areas, or grouped with other ornamental plants to create compositions with different colors, forms and textures.
Pinheiro, P.G.L., Loges, V., Guimarães, W.N.R., Leite, K.P., Gomes, R.J. and Castro, M.F.A. (2010). THE USE OF HELICONIA × NICKERIENSIS IN LANDSCAPE DESIGN. Acta Hortic. 881, 499-503
Heliconiaceae, ornamental tropical plants, flowering period, tropical gardens