The World of Plants

a little database


General description: the genus is composed of mostly vigorous, woody, climbing vines / lianas. The woody stems are quite fragile until several years old. Leaves are opposite and divided into leaflets and leafstalks that twist and curl around supporting structures to anchor the plant as it climbs

Common name: Clematis

Family: Ranunculaceae


Aspect: sunny

Soil requirements: high pH

Why we use in horticulture: a climber plant with a great choice of colours



December 20, 2010 Posted by | Clematis, CLIMBERS AND HERBS | Leave a comment


General description: maples are mostly deciduous trees and shrubs; they are distinguished by opposite leaf arrangement. The leaves in most species are palmate veined and lobed, with 3-9 (rarely to 13) veins each leading to a lobe, one of which is central or apical.

Common name: Maple

Family: Aceraceae (or, with Aesculus, Sapindaceae)

Height: 10 – 45 m.

Aspect: sunny; sheltered

Soil requirements: slightly acid

Why we use in horticulture: autumn colour.
Numerous maple cultivars which have been selected for particular characteristics can be propagated only by asexual reproduction such as cuttings, tissue culture, budding or grafting. Acer palmatum (Japanese maple) alone has over 1,000 cultivars, most selected in Japan, and many of them no longer propagated or not in cultivation in the Western world. Some delicate cultivars are usually grown in pots and rarely reach heights of more than 50–100 cm

Notes: maples are variously classified in a family of their own, the Aceraceae, or together with the Hippocastanaceae included in the family Sapindaceae. Modern classifications, including the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group system, favour inclusion in Sapindaceae. The type species of the genus is Acer pseudoplatanus (Sycamore maple)

December 20, 2010 Posted by | Acer, TREES (DECIDUOUS) | Leave a comment


General description: Firs can be distinguished from other members of the pine family by their needle-like leaves, attached to the twig by a base that resembles a small suction cup; and by erect, cylindrical cones 5–25 cm long that disintegrate at maturity to release the winged seeds

Common name: Fir

Family: Pinaceae

Height: 80 m.


Soil requirements:

Why we use in horticulture:

Notes: the wood of most firs is considered unsuitable for general timber use, and is often used as pulp or for the manufacture of plywood and rough timber

December 20, 2010 Posted by | Abies, TREES (CONIFERS) | Leave a comment


General description: Cedars are trees up to 30–40 m (occasionally 60 m) tall with spicy-resinous scented wood, thick ridged or square-cracked bark, and broad, level branches

Common name: Cedar

Family: Pinaceae

Height: 40 m.

Aspect: adapted to mountain climate

Soil requirements:

Why we use in horticulture: evergreen tree


December 20, 2010 Posted by | Cedrus, TREES (CONIFERS) | Leave a comment


General description: Pines are evergreen, resinous trees (or rarely shrubs) growing 3–80 m tall, with the majority of species reaching 15–45 m tall. The smallest are Siberian Dwarf Pine and Potosi Pinyon, and the tallest Sugar Pine. Pines are long-lived, typically reaching ages of 100–1,000 years, some even more. The longest-lived is the Great Basin Bristlecone Pine, Pinus longaeva, one individual of which, at around 4,800 years old, is one of the world’s oldest living organisms.

Common name: Pine

Family: Pinaceae

Height: 45 m.

Aspect: sunny

Soil requirements: acid soil; sandy; good drainage

Why we use in horticulture: evergreen tree

Notes: Pine wood is widely used in high-value carpentry items such as furniture, window frames, paneling, floors and roofing, and the resin of some species is an important source of turpentine

December 20, 2010 Posted by | Pinus, TREES (CONIFERS) | Leave a comment


General description: Monoecious tree closely related to the birches

Common name: Alder

Family: Betulaceae

Height: 25 – 30 m.

Aspect: sunny

Soil requirements: in general, alders thrive in very wet soil.

Why we use in horticulture:

Notes: Alder is particularly noted for its important symbiotic relationship with Frankia alni, a nitrogen-fixing bacterium. This bacterium is found in root nodules which may be as large as a human fist, with many small lobes and light brown in appearance. The bacterium absorbs nitrogen from the air and makes it available to the tree. Alder, in turn, provides the bacterium with carbon, which it produces through photosynthesis. As a result of this mutually-beneficial relationship, alder improves the fertility of the soils where it grows, and as a pioneer species, it helps provide additional nitrogen for the successional species which follow.

December 20, 2010 Posted by | Alnus, TREES (DECIDUOUS) | Leave a comment


General description: Birch species are generally small to medium-size trees or shrubs, mostly of temperate climates.

Common name: Birch

Family: Betulaceae

Height: 20 m.

Aspect: sunny

Soil requirements: moist and well drained; acidic

Why we use in horticulture: one of the most attractive species is the Betula utilis jaquemontii, that – with its white bark and delicate twigs pattern – makes a winter garden less dull and colourless.
In autumn the leaves turn to gold-yellow

Notes: Birches are regarded as pioneer species, rapidly colonising open ground especially in secondary successional sequences following a disturbance or fire. Birches are early tree species to establish in primary successions and can become a threat to heathland if the seedlings and saplings are not suppressed by grazing or periodic burning.

December 20, 2010 Posted by | Betula, TREES (DECIDUOUS) | Leave a comment

Hello world!

Welcome to my little blog about the wonderful world of Plants.


December 20, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment