Scientific: Anisacanthus quadrifidus var. wrightii (syn. Anisacanthus wrightii)
Common: Texas firecracker, Flame acanthus, hummingbird bush, Wright's desert honeysuckle
Family: Ancanthaceae
Origin: southern United States

Pronounciation: An-is-a-CAN-thus qua-dri-FI-dus variety WRIGH-tee-i

Hardiness zones
USDA 7 (freezes to ground each year), 8 (deciduous), 9 (semi-evergreen)-11

Landscape Use: Use in oasis and xeric landscape gardens as a border accent and a straing attractor of hummingbirds.

Form & Character: Upright and not rounded, an informal, free and easy shrub that is typically (sans shearing by horticultural clods) festive, informal, warm, and inviting.

Growth Habit: In Phoenix, partially deciduous to evergreen perennial shrub depending on winter cold, upright and stiff to somewhat sprawling, 3 to 5 feet in height with similar spread.

Foliage/Texture: Small, medium to dark gree leaves, Lanceolate, smooth, glaborous, light green when young, nearly sessile to 3 inches long, brittle stems; medium fine texture.

Flowers & Fruits: Many, showy reddish orange tubular flowers; fruit an inconspicuous brown capsule with black seeds.

Seasonal Color: Blooms during much of warm growing season, most heavily in spring and late summer/early autumn.

Temperature: Heat loving, but will respond to winter cold by becoming dormant.

Light: Full to partial sun or light shade, no dense or heavy shade.

Soil: Tolerant of some soil alkalinity.

Watering: Infrequent but regular irrigations in desert areas is best especially during summer.

Pruning: Severe renewal pruning of larger plants every few years or otherwise only occassional, light heading cuts of individual stems to differents lengths to promote an informal growth habit. Otherwise, DO NOT SHEAR!!

Propagation: Mostly by cutting, some seed.

Disease and pests: None

Additional comments: In the Phoenix area, Texas firecracker is a surprisingly serviceable shrub with a light floral accent for any oasis or xeric garden theme. It strongly attracts hummingbirds. Older plants have shredding bark. The specific epithet of this plant was named after Charles Wright (1811-1885), a world-renowned botanical collector who mainly collected plant specimens in Texas, Cuba and his native Connecticut.