15 Plants That Start With P - Urban Agriculture

15 Plants That Start With P

With so many plants that start with ‘p’, it can be hard to narrow down the interesting ones, what each plant looks like and what the purpose of each one is.

We have written this article to tell you a little more about plants that start with the letter ‘p’, from the common Peony and Peace Lily to edible plants such as pecans or peppers to plants you might not have heard of before such as a Pseuderanthemun or a Pink Trumpet Vine. So, let’s jump right in!

Plumbago

Plumbago is a very durable and reliable plant which have a cluster of beautiful, intense blue, phlox-like flowers that bloom in the summer and fall. They bloom when cool hues are welcome in the garden and they can easily tolerate inconsistent watering routines.

The shrubby species of the plant are treated as perennials in most cases in climates that are colder, but they are cut back after blooming.

Porcelain Berry

Porcelain berries are native to Asia and produce a stunning display of colorful fruit which are clusters of tiny berries that change from greenish ivory to yellow to blue in the late summer and fall. They often have a variety of colors at the same time, making them a gorgeous addition to your garden.

However, they can be invasive and the rampant stems can grow as tall as 15 feet in one year. Birds enjoy eating the fruit and spread the seeds everywhere. This means you should only plant it in a place where it can be contained, and never somewhere where it can reach the woods or other natural areas.

Peony

Peonies are known for their beautiful blossoms and flourish well in areas with cold winters. The two basic types are the herbaceous peonies and these die to the ground in the late fall, and tree peonies which form woody trunks.

They are both Chinese species and peonies you often find in the garden are hybrids. Peonies dominate flower borders in the spring and can accompany iris old roses, poppies, early daylilies, and dianthus. They grow quite big and live a long time so will be lifetime additions to your garden.

Pawpaw

The pawpaw plant is native to eastern North America and is sometimes called an Indian banana. It’s a member of the tropical fruit family and the tree can grow up to 30 feet tall. It also spreads as wide when growing on its own but you might often see thickets of narrow plants which arise from suckering.

The leaves are green and oval and are 410 inches long, turning yellow in the fall. The flowers are usually purple or brown and they have three large petals attached. The fruit is oval and can grow up to 35 inches long. It is yellow-green and turns brown when ripening.

Peace Lily

Peace Lilly plants come from the tropics, mainly in America, and range from dwarf forms which are a few inches high, right up to 8 footers. Their foliage color varies from light to dark green and the leaves hang on slender stalks.

They are narrow but large plants and the flowers are fragrant in a lot of species. The selection which resembles those of calla or anthurium consists of a leaflike white or green white bract that surrounds a club-shaped structure of tiny flowers.

Potato

The potato is native to the Andes and is a cool-weather crop. It produces a large amount of food per plant as just 2 pounds of seed potatoes can produce 50 pounds of potatoes.

They are great nutritious food and provide plenty of potassium, fiber, and vitamin C. The thick-skinned russet-type of potato is often the kind you find at supermarkets and most selections can take at least 3 months until they are mature.

Persian Violet

You might find this plant potted at the grocery store and we promise it looks so beautiful, you would think it was fake. It does not come from Persia but instead comes from Socotra, which is an island off of the Horn of Africa. The plant has a very sweet scent and comes with blue flowers and yellowish stamens.

The stamens are held above leaves shaped like an egg which are about an inch long and you can also find a white flower version available. They last a long time and with good care, you can keep a Persian Violet for around 6-8 weeks.

Plume Poppy

Plume Poppies are perennial plants that come from China and Japan and sometimes are called Boccanias, which is the name belonging to their shrubby tropical relatives. The species each resemble each other however and have tall stems and large lobed leaves that resemble the leaves of edible figs.

The flowers are small, but you will find them in large, branching clusters. They have a fairly tropical look and their size and structure are a lot more impressive than the color of the flower. 

Pepper

Peppers are shrubby plants that range only from about a foot high to 4 feet and although they are edible, some are attractive enough to be used as ornamentals. Edible peppers are divided up into two different categories. You have the sweet and hot kinds and this is according to the amount of capsaicin in each pepper.

To measure the heat of a pepper, people use Scoville units. Sweet bell peppers are rated 0 SU, whereas peppers such as the volcanic ‘Habanero’ are rated up to 600, 000 SU, and the Bhut Jolokia is rated as high as 1 million SU. You should pick hot peppers only when they are fully ripe but other sweet peppers can be picked green or ripe.

Periwinkle

Periwinkle plants have trailing, overarching stems which root where they touch the soil. They are useful to cover the ground and bank and are tolerant of most types of soil. They have oval or oblong dark green leaves with lavender, five-petaled flowers that appear in the early part of spring.

The larger species should be placed 2212 feet apart and dwarf species just 112 feet apart. Mound up or layer with old stems when planting and mow your garden before new spring growth starts.

Primrose

Primroses are native to the Himalayas and regions of Southeast Asia and Europe. They have flowering stems which carry showy, circular, blossoms with five petals in the late winter and the spring. The blooms might grow on single stems or in tiered clusters up the stem, or clusters at the stem ends. 

Pecan

The pecan is native to the southern and the central US. Commercial production of pecans is limited to the Coastal South but hardy selections thrive in the Upper and Middle South. They are shapely trees, but most residential areas are not big enough for more than one.

Their foliage is similar to the English walnut and has a finer-textured look that casts far less shade. The inconspicuous flowers are joined by the nuts which are enclosed in husks and autumn, these split, and the nuts drop off. Gather these and remove the husks before drying and storing them away ready to eat.

Pink Trumpet Vine

The pink trumpet vine is native to South Africa and can grow up to 20 feet. Their dark glossy green leaves have inch leaflets and one terminal leaflet. They produce loose clusters of around 2-3 inches wide flowers which bloom in the spring or summertime and are red-veined and pink.

These flowers are shaped like open trumpets, hence the name. The plant enjoys the heat and grows very slowly in the first half of its life. They look great on high-branching trees, walls, trunks, arbors, or trellises, yet also do well in large pots in the garden if you have enough room.

Light frosts might cause the leaves to drop in the winter and heavier frosts might kill the vine to the ground, but if the soil does not freeze, you’re guaranteed regrowth. 

Paperbark Tree

The paperback tree is imported from Australia and is a popular choice among south Florida gardeners as a lawn, shade, or street tree. Land speculators however spread seeds of the tree throughout South Florida swamplands and help drain them.

Seedlings invade the wetlands and form impenetrable stands and this eliminates the native vegetation, making the tree very problematic. They can reach 5080 feet tall and 3050 feet wide and have young branches with thick brown to whitebark which peels off in sheets.

The leaves are oval and pale green and can reach up to 24 inches long and the spikes of yellow-white flowers look like bottlebrushes that crowd the tips of the branch in the summer and the fall.

Pseuderanthemun 

This is a plant which is a group of about 60 species and is from tropical woodlands in many different parts of the world. The Pseuderanthemum Carruthersii is from Polynesia and can grow up to 35 feet tall with blackish-purple leaves, they are sometimes spotted with yellow, pink, green, or white flowers that sometimes appear in summer.

The Pseuderanthemum Laxiflorum ‘Shooting Stars grow to 34 feet tall and 23 feet wide and have bright green leaves with star-shaped purple blossoms. 

Caroline Roberts
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