So many plants along the Path are just starting to bloom after spending the spring and summer growing tall and leafy. Two such specimens are the Abutilons which were purchased from the Hillsborough County Jail Horticulture Program for $1.00 a piece last fall.
Abutilon x hybridum
Flowering Maple is the common name for this plant which has reached a height of about 8 feet. Last year at this time it was just an 8 inch rooted cutting. Kept in its pot on the backporch through all the freezing weather of winter, it was planted in the dappled shade as soon as the weather warmed a bit.
The cute little latern shaped blooms are just beginning to open the entire height of the plant. They really do look like lanterns when the sun shines through them.
The blooms are quite small compared to the extra-large maple shaped leaves on this plant. Though not related to a maple tree, there is a certain resemblance. The resident hummingbird loves these blossoms.
The other Abutilon which was purchased has a very similar bloom. The leaves, however, do not have the maple leaf shape. They are more heart shaped and both leaves and stems are hairy in texture.