Firebush, Scarlet Bush

This evergreen shrub works well in a perennial border or in a butterfly garden.
trop_firebush_sh

trop_firebush_sh

Plant type: Evergreen shrub or small tree
Botanical name: Hamelia patens
Hardiness: USDA Zones 9 to 10, herbaceous perennial to Zone 8

Also called Texas firecracker bush. Aptly named for its clusters of orange- to scarlet-red, tubular blooms that resemble little displays of fireworks. Has red stems and gray-green leaves. Where grown as a perennial, it will be evergreen. May be deciduous in marginally hardy climates. Used as an annual in colder climates where it won't overwinter. Blooms all summer long. Produces black fruits that birds enjoy. Plant size ranges from six to 10 feet tall and five to six feet wide. As an annual, plant size ranges from one to three feet tall and as wide.

How to use it: In masses, along a border or in containers. Use in a sunny, mixed perennial border. Good for a bird or butterfly garden.

Culture: Performs best in a moist, well-drained site; requires good drainage. Plant in full sun. Tolerates heat and salt spray. Where it is marginally hardy, provide winter protection to help it overwinter. Propagated through cuttings or seed. No serious problems with pests or diseases.

Special notes: Attracts wildlife, including birds (especially hummingbirds), bees and butterflies. Native to southern Florida as well as Central and South America.

Keep Reading

Next Up

Design a Yard That Will Invite Birds

Follow these tips to attract birds to your garden.

For the Birds: How to Attract Wildlife in Winter

With the right mix of trees and shrubs, your backyard can become a winter haven for birds.

Grow Award-Winning Roses at Home

Rose expert the Redneck Rosarian shares tips on growing roses.

Firebush

This tropical evergreen shrub is a versatile plant that can adapt to a variety of gardens.

Old English Roses to Grow

Old English Rose Varieties to Grow

Problems With Potted Roses in Desert

Find out why some potted roses do better than others in this warm area.

How to Grow Patio Roses in Containers

Plant in containers so you can stop and smell the roses on your patio, deck or balcony.

Companion Plants for Old Roses

Annuals, perennials, and ornamental grasses make beautiful partners for antique roses.

Hummingbird-Attracting Hyssops

David Salman of Santa Fe, N.M., talks about the different varieties of hyssops, how to plant and take care of them and their primary pollinator, the hummingbird.

Wise Watering

Here are a couple of common mistakes we all make when it comes to watering and solutions for avoiding them.

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.

On TV

Log Cabin Living

6:30am | 5:30c

Log Cabin Living

7:30am | 6:30c

Desert Flippers

12:30pm | 11:30c

Desert Flippers

1:30pm | 12:30c

Desert Flippers

2:30pm | 1:30c

Desert Flippers

3:30pm | 2:30c

Flip or Flop

4:30pm | 3:30c

Flip or Flop

5:30pm | 4:30c

Flip or Flop

6:30pm | 5:30c

Flip or Flop

7:30pm | 6:30c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Flip or Flop

8pm | 7c

Flip or Flop

8:30pm | 7:30c

Flip or Flop Atlanta

9:30pm | 8:30c

House Hunters

10pm | 9c

House Hunters

11pm | 10c

House Hunters

11:30pm | 10:30c

Flip or Flop Atlanta

12:30am | 11:30c

House Hunters

1am | 12c

House Hunters

2:30am | 1:30c

Flip or Flop

3:30am | 2:30c

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.