California Gardens - The Year Round Gardening Site

Odontonema strictum - Firespike

Firespike, Odontonema strictum has also gone under the names of Justicia coccinea and Odontonema tubiforme. The big avocado like leaves and the stunning red blooms make Firespike seem very tropical. But Odontonema strictum does very well with very little. A Firespike plant lived for years without irrigation in Franceschi Park in Santa Barbara on heavy soils. Odontonema strictum made it through a Winter with minimum temperatures holding at 16 for most of the night in our garden. Firespike plants did die to the ground but came back famously the next year. The primary bloom season for Odontonema strictum is in the late Spring and Summer but sporadic blooms can be expected earlier and then continue into the Fall. I grow Odontonema strictum in the shade but Firespike plants can take some sun near the coast.

Odontonema strictum, Firespike

Brilliant red flowers of Odontonema strictum - Firespike. High resolution photos are part of our garden image collection.