Hesperantha coccinea 'Rivoli Red'
A superior red seedling that arose here and one that is a bit larger than the other large red selections we grow. It was fun to lay out a table of flowers of all the cultivars and our seedlings for comparative evaluation. It was quickly apparent that it is hard not to love red and might as well go big. Just add water, food and sun. The name refers to Anna Massena, Princess d'Esseling and Duchess of Rivoli of France. Her husband was a serious amateur ornithologist with 12,500 bird specimens including an unidentified hummingbird which he had collected along the west coast of North America. This was later named Calypte anna - Anna's Hummingbird. This is a favorite resident here all year and loves the winter flowers in our greenhouses during spates of freezing weather. The males are little emerald green Jack Russell's, flashing a conspicuous Rivoli Red throat patch.