A Ground Cover Blooms at Zoo Miami: The Mexican Bluebell
By Susana Cortázar
While taking a leisurely walk around Zoo Miami and basking in the beauty of its many plants and flowers, your attention will be drawn by one of the most strikingly colored and shaped flowers, which is native to Mexico – the Mexican Bluebell (Ruellia brittoniana).
According to plant expert Bob Beck, the Mexican Bluebell “only comes in lavender-blue when found in the wild, whereas the domestic, nursery variety comes in shades of blue, purple and rosy.”
With its dark green stems growing approximately three feet upright, the Mexican Bluebell should ideally be planted 24 to 36 inches apart as it spreads easily and will provide you with a beautiful ground covers ideally suited for damp, shady locations.
As an added bonus, if you like butterflies, this flower’s sweet nectar will attract various butterfly species as well as hummingbirds to your garden.
Since the Mexican Bluebell easily reseeds itself, it can become invasive; therefore, make sure to trim it as necessary to keep it under control.
So next time you visit Zoo Miami, make sure you stop to enjoy these beautiful flowers in front of Dr. Wilde’s World, between animal exhibits, and many other special spots throughout the zoo’s walkways.