Fame Flower: A Colourful and Tough Succulent that is Perfect in Pots

Colourful flowers that sway and jitter on wiry stems, Fame flower (Talinum calcycinum) is another example of a rough and tumble, easy-grow plant that is disguised as delicate and fragile. Rather, it is a hardy (zones 4ish-9) succulent that is native to the North American prairies. Related to the common edible weed purslane (Portulaca oleracea), fame flower likes it dry, so if you do not have sandy or gritty soil, consider keeping it in a pot as my friend Barry has with the specimen pictured here.

While it is not a perennial in much colder climates, it will self-sow liberally and live on as an annual. A second species, Talinum paniculatum ‘Limón’, has been growing in my garden for two summers now. What began as a singular impulse buy from a corner market had turned into dozens of colourful seedlings by the first fall. In the second summer I found babies scattered at amazing distances, some clear across the garden!

Both plants are easy to grow from seed, so if you can’t find transplants I highly suggest starting your own. I have a pot with teeny seedlings going underneath lights right now.

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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4 thoughts on “Fame Flower: A Colourful and Tough Succulent that is Perfect in Pots

  1. With a limited amount of ground space in my courtyard garden I have assembled a multitude of pots and containers. For those plants that prove they can survive the New Orleans heat I then move them into more permanent concrete containers. The plants you show here are so beautiful. I have a special affection for blue flowering plants. I am waiting for my first blue colored succulent to arrive any day now.

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