Scientific Name: Heliconia psittacorum
Common Names: Parakeet Heliconia, Parrot's Beak, Parakeetflower, Parakeet Flower, Parrot's Flower, Parrot's Plant, False Bird-of-Paradise
Growth Habit: Herb/Forb
Hawaii Native Status: Introduced, Cultivated. This naturalizing ornamental garden plant is native to South America and Trinidad.
Flower Color: Orange, Red, Yellow, Pink, Green, Cream
Flowering Season: Year-round
Height: Up to 5 feet (1.5 m) tall, but often less
Description: The flowers are clustered above two or more colorful, lanceolate floral bracts with a waxy bloom. The individual flowers are 3-angled, narrowly banana-shaped, up to 1 3/4 inches (4.5 cm) long, and have 6 fused tepals and a dark-ringed tip. The flowers are followed by fleshy, rounded, dark blue fruits. The leaves are simple, alternate, long-petioled, and have light green, lanceolate leaf blades. The pseudostems (formed by the leaf sheaths) emerge from underground rhizomes.
The flowers (both the actual flowers and the petal-like bracts) come in a wide variety of cultivated colors and last for weeks as cut flowers in tropical flower arrangements.
Parakeet Heliconia is the most commonly cultivated Heliconia species in Hawaii, and it is escaping from gardens and becoming naturalized along roadsides here.
Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Liliopsida – Monocotyledons
Family: Heliconiaceae – Heliconia family
Genus: Heliconia L. – heliconia
Species: Heliconia psittacorum L. f. – parakeetflower