Gardens from the desert part 1
After the Snow

Gardens from the desert part 2

This is the Winter in Dubai, and for those of us from the UK, the balmy 22-28c temperatures and no humidity make it the perfect winter sun destination. 7 hours flying time, and 4 hours time difference, make it great for those seeking the sun, but the summer temperatures of up to 50c mean that the choices for plants are completely different from anything we can plant outside in the UK.   I wasn’t expecting to know many of the plant types, but 12 years working in garden centres which sell houseplants meant that I recognised more plants than I thought. Varieties that grace our Living rooms and conservatories like Croton, Bougainvillea, Jasmine, and Sanseverias etc have been used extensively.   Here are some of the plants I knew and loved seeing in flower in January.  

Hibiscus Rosa Sinensis – while garden centres sell this as a 30cm high short lived flowering houseplant, - we sat next to these brilliant red flowers at our lunch table, where they were growing to 120-150cm tall.


Bougainvillea, I’ve admired the fantastic colours of the bracts of this spiky climber in several blog posts from California and Australia, and as small plants at flower shows, but it was lovely to see the many different colours climbing and being used almost as hedging.


I'm pretty sure that this is a form of Bidens, it was forming a lovely ground covering “hedge” to edge the walkways 


One of my favourite tropical plants is Canna, - this one is probably Canna Tropicana, and this and the plain version had been used extensively. - Only problem was that quite a lot of it had red spider mite, - probably not so bad when the humidity gets up in the summer, but not great at this time of year.


I think that this lovely white flower which was planted in big groups in the gardens and in the Aquaventure water park is Hymenocallis (please correct me if i'm wrong)


There were also in flower Ixora, Incarvillea, Jasmine and Tradescantea Plus (and most weirdly for me considering it is the middle of winter)

Petunias, Impatiens and Salvia Victoria as Bedding plants



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I dread the bouganvillea season in a HP dept. Theres more pink paper bracts on the table than on the plant after a week and it gets worse as the weeks go by.

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