Jamaica is well known around the world for its lush tropical climate and long white sand beaches. Thanks to this tropical climate and rich, fertile soil.
Jamaica offers the perfect conditions for growing masses of colorful, unique, and wonderful flowers. The flowers in Jamaica not only add color to the landscape. They also have strong cultural meanings and impressive backstories.
If you’ve ever fallen in love with a Jamaican garden or simply want to improve your knowledge of flowers from around the world, then you’ve come to the right place.
In this article, we will be taking a look at the most popular flowers Jamaica has to offer. Some are weird and wonderful flowering shrubs, while others are beautiful flowers you might even find in your garden.
At the end of this blog, you should have a greater understanding of what flowers grow in Jamaica, what conditions they need, and if they have any cultural meaning that are important to the Jamaican population. You may even get some ideas about what tropical vibes you can bring to your backyard.
Without further ado let’s dive straight into the list.
The first flower on our list is actually the national flower of Jamaica. The lignum vitae is a charming small blue flower that’s bloom is part of a hardwood tree. That tree is called guaiacum. In Latin, lignum vitae means “tree of life” which symbolizes how important this tree is to the Jamaican people.
Almost every part is used in one way or another including the wood, blossoms, leaves, and sap. Its most common use is in medicine. As well as the beautiful blue flowers a vibrant orange fruit also grows on the guaiacum tree.
The poinciana blooms with gorgeous red, yellow, and orange flowers from June through to September. The leaves on this flower look similar to those found on a fern plant coming in a lush green color that contrasts brilliantly with the vibrancy of the flowers.
The poinciana flower is also referred to as the ostrich flower because the flower opens up wide like a peacock tail to reveal its beauty. This flower needs hard, frost-free soil to grow. However, even when conditions are perfect it can take up to 10 years for this plant to flower.
This parasitic plant is commonly found growing on top of other plants throughout Jamaica. The flower on the love bush is quite unique in that its flower is completely leafless. To get its nutrients this flower also feeds off other plants that it covers.
The stems on the love bush are where the small white flowers can be found. It is the stem’s flexibility and thinness that allow the plant to easily grow over other plants.
In all honesty, this isn’t a plant you would want to grow at home as it has an appearance that looks like a clump of long hair you would find in your showers drain. In Jamaica, this plant was once used to predict if somebody had a crush on you or not.
The hibiscus is a hugely popular tropical flower not only in Jamaica but also around the world. This flower is loved mainly because of its rich variety of colors ranging from deep red to yellow, and pale pink.
The flower on the hibiscus is trumpet-shaped with five petals, contrasting nicely with the green glossy leaves. The fast-growing plant is a common sight in gardens all around Jamaica and can also be grown easily in the U.S.
Plant your hibiscus in a warm position with full access to the sun and well-drained soil for the best results. The hibiscus flower typically symbolizes love and passion.
Heliconias are yellow, red, and orange in color, commonly being used as ornamental decorations around the home or in the garden. The crab claw-like flowers grow in clusters at the top of the stalk and have a firm exterior.
With large leaves, unique flowers the heliconia plant looks amazing in a floral arrangement. The outward, upright appearance of the flowers also adds to the overall attractiveness of the plant. It is believed heliconias will keep you youthful and beautiful.
Flamenco Dwarf Mix
This flower is arguably the most impressive on this list. Growing no taller than 3 feet, hence the name dwarf mix, the flower on this plant is absolutely stunning. Blooming in fiery red, deep orange, and bright yellow the pinecone-shaped flowers stand at the top of the plant.
Each stem has a solitary flower that thanks to its small stature can easily be used in lovely floral arrangements. These flowers bloom best in full sun, in soil that isn’t over fertile.
Sandalwood bramble is an evergreen shrub that needs to be pollinated by bees to survive. The flowers on a sandalwood bramble plant can vary in color but they tend to be bright red. The tiny flowers have four symmetrical delicate petals and an even smaller yellow center.
When growing sandalwood bramble you can expect rapid growth and amazing blossom when the plant is placed in clay-like soil or sand.
The Jamaican orchid is a thing of beauty. Representing grace and elegance the flower of the Jamaican orchid grows on the bark and branches of trees. Growing in clusters of four or five stalks the delightful flowers are round in shape and usually red in color.
Its petal is fairly wide, fanning outward with a flat ruffled tip that has a nice hint of yellow. These flowers thrive in direct sunlight and high humidity. If you live in cooler climates you should use a greenhouse.
Kiss Me Over The Garden Gate
With a name like kiss me over the garden gate, you expect something impressive. It’s fair to say this flower doesn’t disappoint. This garden flower is beautifully exotic. It makes the perfect centerpiece and also looks fantastic when planted along a wall in a hanging basket.
The rose-colored flowers grow in clusters at the end of a thin stringy stem. Some say the flower resembles a cat’s tail.
There is also another popular species of this flower that grows in a lighter shade of pink. This flower is a fast-growing annual plant that can tolerate poor soil as long as it isn’t overly wet.
The blue mahoe is actually a species of flowering tree that belongs to the mallow family. It is the national tree of Jamaica. The fast-growing tree can reach up to 60 feet tall thanks to its thick straight trunk. The flowers on the blue mahoe are incredibly pretty.
Often coming in a gorgeous turquoise blue color they are also found in a dark red color. Each large flower has approximately five petals that flail outward and a tiny yellow center. You will need a lot of space if you’re even going to attempt to grow a blue mahoe.
The fern may not be a flowering plant but its lovely green star-like shape makes it a big hit with Jamaican locals and tourists. Believed to bring good luck and fortune to you and your family, the fern is a hard-working plant that has the ability to flourish in full sunlight and damp soil.
The fern plant is usually used as an ornamental decoration but in some cultures, they also use it in food or as a medicine.
The passionflower is an alien-looking climbing vine with thread-like strands. Some are trees and others are shrubs. The flower on this plant has multiple layers of overlapping, large petals that vary in color and get smaller closer towards the center.
In the center of the flower also sits an oddly shaped stigma, ovary, and anther. The same flower can be yellow, green, pink, white, and purple in color. They are used to symbolize the passion of Christ.
Also known by the name achiote, the arnatto flower is the final flower on our list. This flower grows on a shrub that doesn’t just grow in Jamaica. The flower on the achiote plant blooms in white or pink with a hard, spiky exterior.
As well as looking completely weird and wonderful the flower on this plant is actually a spiked shell. Inside the shell, you will find a collection of red, sweet, juicy, and peppery fruit.
Jamaicans use this fruit to add flavor to local dishes and enhance the color of the meal. It can leave a red color on your lips which has led to many people calling it the “lipstick tree”.
These are just some of the many flowers found in Jamaica. The list could quite easily have gone on and on because the Jamaican climate has created the perfect environment for plant life to thrive and evolve.
Hopefully, our list has given you a good taste of what flowers can be found in Jamaica and how they quite often have deeper meanings behind them. Flowers aren’t always used to add color to a garden, they can also be used to represent feelings and emotions or represent cultural importance.
Now you have our list of why not take a deeper look into the flowers of Jamaica and even attempt to grow some of your own. By growing some of the unique flowers from our list you can add tropical vibrance to your garden.