Justicia brandegeeana Wassh. & L.B. Sm.
Beloperone guttata Brandegee
Shrimp plant is native to Mexico. It has become naturalized on the Florida penninsula. Many cultivars are available.
Identification: Shrimp plants are 3-5' (1-1.5 m) tall and up to 3' (1 m) wide. Leaves are oval, 1-3" (3-7.5 cm) long. Stems and leaves are downy. Branches are topped by red “flowers” that are really bracts—modified leaves. These have a shape and texture suggestive of shrimp, hence the common name. They are about 6" (15 cm) long and initially white, becoming rusty red, pinkish red, pale pink, deep salmon, orange(-ish), pink-bronze, or brownish red—accounts obviously vary. (Cultivars appear in other colors as well.) The bracts grow in segments like sections of shrimp shells, sometimes reaching as much as a foot in length. The real flowers are white, tubular, with throats containing deep red speckles. They are fairly inconspicuous.
Justicia brandegeeana on Wikipedia
Justicia brandegeeana on www.rubythroat.org
Justicia brandegeeana on floridata.com
Justicia brandegeeana at the Missouri Botanical Garden
Justicia brandegeeana on Desert-tropicals.com
Justicia brandegeeana description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 26 Aug 2020.