Exploring the ‘Red Hot’ Tecoma Shrub
I am always on the lookout for new plants to the desert plant palette. The desert plant palette is ever-evolving, with growers continually striving to introduce new varieties that boast exciting colors, sizes, and desirable characteristics.
I was able to visit Civano Nursery Farm, located in Sahuarita, 20 miles outside of Tucson this fall. The goal was to introduce me to their new Tecoma shrub hybrid called ‘Red Hot.’ This new plant is closely related to yellow and orange bells. Both are great plants to use when designing.
A Glimpse into ‘Red Hot’ Tecoma
At the time of my visit, ‘Red Hot’ was not yet available to the public. Still a test plant, it has been grown for testing throughout the Southwest.
I met with Jackie Lyle, their Brand Development Manager. She plays an integral part in the introduction of new plants to the Southwest region.
Exploring Civano Nursery Farm
Our tour began in the greenhouses where we explored their state-of-the-art automated systems. There are massive amounts of plants in all stages of growth. I was in heaven!
Although I’ve never worked in a nursery or for a grower, witnessing how they propagate plants from cuttings was a fascinating experience.
The Beauty of ‘Red Hot’ Tecoma
While touring the greenhouses, I got my first view of ‘Red Hot’ Tecoma. Instantly, I could see why there is so much excitement about this new variety. The foliage has the characteristic color of most Tecomas,. But the leaves are somewhat smaller than yellow bells and more compact.
The vibrant red blooms stole the show, and I knew they would undoubtedly attract hummingbirds with their nectar-rich flowers.
The ‘Civano Select’ are plants hybridized by the grower. These shrubs have slightly different characteristics than the more common species. This makes them a welcome addition to the desert plant palette. I was able to view several of their ‘Select’ plants during our tour.
How to Grow ‘Red Hot’ Tecoma
As you can imagine, this is a bustling nursery. There were shipments of plants headed out to job sites and other nurseries.
Whoever is getting these ‘Red Hot’ shrubs are in for a treat!
‘Red Hot’ Tecoma in Your Garden
And, guess who came home with her own ‘Red Hot’ shrubs? Me!
Then I was extremely honored to receive two of these new shrubs. I can share with you how they do in my Phoenix area garden. They are doing very well along the south-facing side of my house underneath the window by my kitchen.
Then, of course, I also brought home other plants – autumn sage (Salvia greggii), Mt. Lemmon marigold (Tagetes lemmonii), ‘Mr. Liko’ pink gaura (Gaura lindheimeri ‘Mr. Liko’). Getting free plants is like Christmas to this horticulturist!
The great news is that ‘Red Hot’ Tecoma shrubs are now available at many local nurseries.
Want to see if this is the right shrub for your garden?
Here are the stats:
- Size: 4 feet tall and wide
- Exposure: Full sun, reflected sun
- Bloom Season: Spring through Fall
- Cold Hardiness: 15 degrees
- Attracts: Hummingbirds
I will share the progress of my new ‘Red Hot’ shrubs and maybe you can do the same.