Four O'Clock, Marvel of Peru (Mirabilis jalapa)

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Four O'Clock, Marvel of Peru
Mirabilis jalapa


These red, yellow, magenta and broken colored blooms on different plants which form a huge clump.

Thumbnail by htop
(Zone 7a)

Thankx for sharing this photoh,htop. My dad tells me his mother grew these on their NC farm in the late 19th and early centuries. No time machine like a flower.

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

You are quite welcome. II have very fond memories of my grandmother's and mother's four o'clocks with the magenta colored blooms. I had not realized that there are types with other colors of blooms until I saw this group in a yard in my neighborhood. I have just started growing them again. A friend gave me some pink blooming ones. The ones that have broken colors (one bloom has various colors, and the other blooms on the plant vary in the color variegation) are really interesting. I have some photos of these also which Ihave not posted yet. Thank you for your comments.

(Zone 7a)

Well! flower of the day with all those other 4-O-Clock photos. My seeds didn't come up this year - DH discovered a nest of tiny little rabbits. We did pause a moment and look at each other, and then he gently put it back. I still have some seeds left for next year and will get a little busier with chicken wire next spring, one of my most faithful companions. Some people knit, I make contraptions out of chicken wire over the winter for spring. LOL Thankx again, all.

GOD's Green Earth, United States(Zone 8b)

Beautiful Hazel! Unfortunately the deer thought mine were also tasty...I hope you're feeling better!!! God bless you :) Gretchen

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

bluespiral, thank goodness I don't have many problems with rabbits. I have found babies in one flowerbed on only one occassion. I was watering and heard a horrible screeching noise and discovered it was 4 about 2 or 3 month old rabbits. They high tailed it back into the field after that. I guess they didn't like being given a bath. Another time, my dog brought in 4 about a day old babies one at a time. It was so weird because he was putting them in our shoes. I don't know if he thought the shoes made good substitute nests or if he figured we would find the babies when we put on our shoes. The other babies that I found in the yard had been killed by fire ants. We raised them for months, but they eventually died. I learned that the babies need a special formula that contains the appropriate nutrients. The ones I was trying to save developed what appeared to be brain problems and suffered seizures. I was very sad as was my dog. Having to make chicken wire contraptions must be a real pain.

Gretchen, thanks. I am fortunate that I don't have deer feasting on my plants too. There were a lot of deer here when we first moved in, but houses have replaced almost all of the beautiful fields that I loved and the deer have moved on. My main problems are skunks, opposums and armadillo. I don't know which ones dig in my flowerbeds for grubs. I am progressing nicely in my recovery and have to monitor myself so I do not do too much yet. About all I can do in the yard is water right now. I did trim some plants back last week.

(Zone 7a)

Skunks have such amazing personalities, don't they? We keep a Hav-a-Hart trap going for woodchucks, and once a skunk ambled in. When we opened the door, he seemed to think it over: to leave, or not to leave. Eventually, he mosied out and sedately, stopping to sniff here or there, left. I would love to be that laid back. Hazel, now is a very good time to just rest in the garden and watch the wildlife while you mend. Karen

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Karen, one of my older brothers in his much younger days captured 2 baby skunks and "deskunked" them. We kept them as pets for many years. They are indeed interesting creatures. Yes, I have been enjoying myself just observing my landscape instead of working on it constantly. I have overcome noticing what needs to be done. It is kinda nice for a change.

(Zone 7a)

Hazel, Long ago I read a book of Stephen King's called Christine. My memory has probably mutated King's villain in that book, but I recall the bad guy's yard was shaggy with weeds 'mongst the grass whilst honeysuckle scrambled up a tall chainlink fence. Maybe Christine, the haunted car, sat there on a concrete block or two...tossed beer cans, perhaps. As a rebellious army brat whose father had put a high premium on neatness and tidiness in the garden, I found this vision mesmerizing - and very satisfying LOL.

Now's a good time to read in the garden. In between hurricanes. Henry Mitchell, Stephen Lacey's The Startling Jungle, and Passionate Gardening by Lauren Springer and Rob Proctor (spelling?) are wonderful for dreaming and laughing. They are currently in our library, so maybe in your's? Karen

San Antonio, TX(Zone 8b)

Karen, I too remember Christine. Thanks for the book suggestions.

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