The following picture shows lantana plants in a pot. The leaves are greenish yellow, the stems are white and purple, and the flowers are red. They grow from a single point at the top of each stem. These plants have been known to grow up to six feet tall!
Lantana (Lonicera foenum-graecum) is one of the most popular flowering plants in North America. Its name comes from the Spanish word “lante” which means “flower”. The plant’s flower color ranges from pale pink to deep crimson.
Lantana is a member of the mint family and grows naturally in warm climates throughout Mexico, Central America, South America and parts of Africa.
It was introduced into North America by Christopher Columbus in 1493 when he landed in Puerto Rico. Since then it has spread rapidly through the Caribbean and Florida. It is now found in all 50 states.
Lantana is native to tropical regions of Mexico, Central America, South America and parts of Africa.
Lantana Plant Care Tips
As with any houseplant, lantana requires regular watering; however, unlike other houseplants that require frequent waterings or misting once a day, lantana needs very little water at all! It can actually survive on water from rainfall or condensation alone. If you are in a dry climate, your lantana is more than likely to thrive on less water.
In fact, in a dryer climate it can survive for months without any watering at all!
Lantana also grows well in poor soil. While it prefers sandy loam soil to allow its roots to thrive, but will grow reasonably well in nearly any type of soil and even in hard clay! While this plant grows extremely well in full sunlight, it will also grow in partial shade.
An interesting feature of the lantana plant is its ability to survive harsh weather conditions. During the winter months, lantana plants can survive on moisture from dew and rainfall alone. It can even survive light frost conditions.
This makes lantana a popular choice for people living in colder climates that are less able to provide proper care for their houseplants during the winter months!
Lantana can grow extremely tall, reaching up to 6 feet. If you have limited space in your home or garden, you may want to pinch your lantana plant to prevent it from growing so tall. Just be careful when pinching, as the plant is prone to damage and you do not want to kill it!
If you’re interested in a shorter lantana, try growing a lantana cultivar such as “Sundowner.”
The flowers of the lantana plant change color based on temperature and sunlight exposure. In hotter temperatures, the flowers are more orange or even red, but in cooler temperatures the flowers are a pale pink. This explains why some people have lantana plants with brightly colored red flowers while others have lantana plants with pale pink flowers.
The picture to the left shows a cluster of lantana in my garden. This is a particularly beautiful grouping as the flowers are in various stages of development, giving the appearance of a multicolored blanket of flowers.
Lantana also makes a nice border as its dense clusters of flowers create a nice-looking boundary.
If you have a small garden, cluster several lantana plants together to give the appearance of a full bush. If space is not an issue, however, the plant can grow into a small tree up to six feet in height! As with any flowering plant, it makes for a nice appearance when several plants of the same type are grouped together.
Even if you are not a fan of gardening, many florists sell potted lantana plants for a quick and easy way to add a pop of color to your home or office.
If growing lantana outdoors is not an option, you can always grow it in a large pot and bring it indoors during the winter. Just be sure to put it by a sunny window so it gets enough sunlight!
There are several varieties of lantana, including:
L. decrescens – the most common species, with clusters of red or orange flowers. This particular selection is very tolerant of climate and exposure changes.
L. muricata – multicolored flowers on a shrub that grows up to six feet in height.
L. monachica – multicolored flowers on a shrub that grows up to 3 feet in height.
L. punctata – has clusters of red or orange flowers and grows about three feet in height.
L. strigosa – Red flowers with a yellow center grow in clusters up to 2 feet in height.
L. triphylla – a three-leaved species that’s great for rock gardens or growing in pots because it’s extremely tolerant of adverse conditions.
L. uruguayensis – has pink flowers and grows up to 4 feet in height.
L. warrenii – large orange flowers on shrubs that can reach up to 8 feet in height.
As you can see, there are several different varieties of lantana that can be grown both indoors and outdoors in your garden or landscape. Whether you’re looking for color during the winter or a pop of color in your yard, lantana is a great choice!
Learn more about different types of gardens, including tips and tricks on how to start your own:
Sources & references used in this article:
Effects of diluted and undiluted treated wastewater on the growth, physiological aspects and visual quality of potted lantana and polygala plants by S Bañón, J Miralles, J Ochoa, JA Franco… – Scientia …, 2011 – Elsevier
The creation of compact plants of Lantana camara L. subsp. camara with the aid of plant growth regulators by A Matsoukis, A Chronopoulou-Sereli – IV International Symposium on …, 1999 – actahort.org
Population dynamics and dispersal of Aphelenchoides fragariae in nursery-grown Lantana by LM Kohl, CY Warfield, DM Benson – Journal of nematology, 2010 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
Size control and postproduction growth of container-grown perennial verbena, Cherry Sage, and Lantana drenched with paclobutrazol. by MA Arnold – PGRSA Quarterly, 1998 – cabdirect.org
Paclobutrazol Application Method Influences Growth and Flowering ofNew Gold’Lantana by JM Ruter – HortTechnology, 1996 – journals.ashs.org
Substrate amendment effects on potted plant production and dry weight partition of Lantana camara by PA Nektarios, S Kastritsis, N Ntoulas… – …, 2011 – journals.ashs.org
(40) Evaluation of Freshly Chipped Pine Tree Substrate for Container-grown Lantana camera by CR Boyer, GB Fain, CH Gilliam, HA Torbert… – …, 2006 – journals.ashs.org