Firecracker Flower

Firecracker Flower Overview

Description A welcome pop of color in the winter, firecracker flowers lights up tropical and coastal gardens with its candy cornlike blossoms from fall until the heat of summer puts a halt to the show. The prolific flowers are calling cards for hummingbirds and bees, which visit the shrub frequently to gather nectar. Tolerant of sun or shade, firecracker flower is a great for planting near shaded patios, full-sun foundation garden beds, or in a perennial border.
Genus Name Justicia rizzinii
Common Name Firecracker Flower
Plant Type Shrub
Light Part Sun, Sun
Height 1 to 3 feet
Width 2 to 4 feet
Flower Color Orange, Red, Yellow
Foliage Color Blue/Green
Season Features Fall Bloom, Spring Bloom, Winter Bloom
Special Features Attracts Birds, Good for Containers, Low Maintenance
Zones 10, 9
Propagation Seed, Stem Cuttings

Using Firecracker Flower in the Garden

Pair firecracker flower with camellia to create a colorful shrub border in a shaded location. Another brilliant winter-flowering shrub, camellia has roselike flowers that debut in fall, winter, or early spring depending on the cultivar. Both are evergreen, so together create an informal living screen or a colorful patio backdrop.

Growing Firecracker Flower

Firecracker flower grows well in full sun or shade and well-drained soil. Plant firecracker flower in fall or winter and water plants regularly to encourage a strong, deep root system. After established, firecracker flower has good drought tolerance. Few pests or diseases plague firecracker flower. Prune plants as needed to maintain shape in early summer after flowering tapers.

This colorful plant also grows well in large containers. Plant it in a pot that is at least 24 inches wide and enjoy it as a patio shrub year-round. Repot it every 3 years or so to refresh the soil, transitioning to a larger container if you desire a larger plant. Maintain the shape of a container-grown plant by pruning the branch tips back by a few inches after the plant finishes blooming in early summer.

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