Class is now in session for Wildflower Wednesday - Wild Petunia

Wild Petunia, Ruellia humilis
"Good morning, class."

"Good morning, Miss Horters."

"Now class, I hope you all remembered that today we are having a very special Show & Tell for Wildflower Wednesday, which is always on the 4th Wednesday of the month".

"Yes, Miss Horters, we remembered," said the class in unison.

"Miss Horters?"

"Yes, Judy?" 

"Miss Horters, Carol brought in a garden fairy with her wildflower I thought you didn't allow garden fairies in class will you be sending her to the principal's office?"

"No, Judy.  I won't be sending Carol or anyone else to the principal's office. We are granting a special exception just for today because we all know garden fairies are notoriously hard to control and I'm sure Carol didn't mean to bring in a garden fairy with her wildflower."

"Now, Carol, why don't you tell us about your wildflower. It's very pretty."

"Thank you, Miss Horters", said Carol as she stood up, stuck her tongue out at Judy and headed to the front of the class.  "My wildflower today is wild petunia, Ruellia humilis.  Would you like to know more about it or the garden fairy who came in with it?"

"Just tell us about the wildflower, Carol. We don't want to encourage garden fairies with any publicity."

"Well, Miss Horters, and fellow classmates, I got my wild petunia from my garden designer.  She sent me an email and asked if I'd like a start of wild petunia and of course I said yes.  I had visions of it blanketing the ground of my August Dreams Garden border with its pretty bluish-purple flowers.

When she gave it to me late in the fall, I dutifully planted it as soon as I got it home. I thought it hadn't survived that first winter in my garden when I didn't see it the next spring, the next summer or the next fall or the next spring. Then this summer, there it was. It was growing in the path, not the garden border. It is pretty tolerant of a lot of different conditions, apparently. I suspect the garden fairies knew this and they grabbed some seeds from the one I got from the garden designer and threw them out into the path."

"Carol, that's an interesting theory about how it came to grow in the path."

"I almost weeded it out of the path when I saw it but something made me stop. I suspect garden fairies held me back. Anyway, I'm glad I did stop short of pulling out my wild petunia because now it is blooming. I am hopeful that this one sets seeds and more wild petunias pop up around my garden and one day I'll have a blanket of wild petunias."

"Well, Carol, we're glad you didn't weed it out, too, and we hope it continues to sow itself around your garden. Thank you for sharing it with us today."

"Your welcome, Miss Horters.  I love my wild petunia and I love Wildflower Wednesday."

"Now class, does anyone else have a wildflower to share, posted on Clay and Limestone?"


  1. Oh so it is called wild petunia. Ours here which beautifies our sidestreets in the province is its cousin, Ruellia tuberosa. This seems to have darker hue than yours. It spreads so fast, invasive.

  2. Your garden designer here. I had just dug up another start for you when I saw your post. Watch this Ruellia closely, as it will indeed fill up your August Dreams bed and march on to occupy your entire garden! Your garden designer has learned the hard way that even a plant that's native can be a thug in the garden. That said, I'm very fond of the fuzzy leaves and petunia flowers. Ruellia humilis is great for filling in a hell strip and blooms for a good long time.

  3. Miss Horters sounds like a very caring teacher, allowing even garden fairies into the classroom. You've given me hope that some of the wildflowers I planted last year may have survived after all, and that I just need to be patient.

  4. Very cute! I had a Petunia pop up in my garden right by my gutter downspout. I doubt that it is a wild one, though, as it is bright pink. A bird dropped a seed from somewhere, no doubt!


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