Galphimia glauca

This compact, upright, rounded, evergreen shrub is covered during most of the year with small, very showy, yellow flowers. The loose, open natural growth habit is ideal for informal plantings but it will need some pruning to keep from being too leggy. It can be sheared into a more formal hedge and can be used for topicary, but some flowers will be trimmed off at each pruning. Sheared plants often thin out at the bottom. To help prevent this, keep the bottom of a hedge slightly wider than the top to allow sunlight to reach the lower foliage. There are several examples in Florida of Thryallis pruned into a small, multiple-trunked tree.

General Information
Scientific name: Galphimia glauca
Pronunciation: gal-FIM-ee-uh GLOCK-uh
Common name(s): Thryallis, Rain-of-Gold
Family: Malpighiaceae
Plant type: shrub
USDA hardiness zones: 9B through 11
Planting month for zone 9: year round
Origin: not native to North America
Uses: border; mass planting; specimen; container or aboveground planter
Availability: somewhat available, may have to go out of the region to find the plant
Plant density: dense

Height: 5 to 9 feet
Spread: 4 to 6 feet
Plant habit: oval
Growth rate: moderate
Texture: fine

Leaf arrangement: opposite/subopposite
Leaf type: simple
Leaf margin: entire
Leaf shape: oblong
Leaf venation: pinnate
Leaf type and persistence: evergreen
Leaf blade length: 2 to 4 inches
Leaf color: green
Fall color: no fall color change
Fall characteristic: not showy

Flower color: yellow
Flower characteristic: year-round flowering

Fruit shape: oval
Fruit length: less than .5 inch
Fruit cover: dry or hard
Fruit color: green
Fruit characteristic: inconspicuous and not showy

Trunk and Branches
Trunk/bark/branches: not particularly showy; typically multitrunked or clumping stems
Current year stem/twig color: reddish
Current year stem/twig thickness: thin

Light requirement: plant grows in full sun
Soil tolerances: slightly alkaline; clay; sand; acidic; loam
Drought tolerance: moderate
Soil salt tolerances: poor
Plant spacing: 36 to 60 inches

Roots: usually not a problem
Winter interest: plant has winter interest due to unusual form, nice persistent fruits, showy winter trunk, or winter flowers
Outstanding plant: not particularly outstanding
Invasive potential: not known to be invasive
Pest resistance: no serious pests are normally seen on the plant

Use and Management
Full sun is needed for best appearance and flowering but Thryallis can tolerate some shade. Flowering will be sparse without a full day of sun. Plant three to five feet apart in shrub border or in any mass planting. Plants are killed to the ground at about 25-degrees F. but quickly regrow in the spring in USDA hardiness zones 8b and 9. Thryallis is propagated by seeds, sown while still green, or by tender softwood cuttings in summer. Seedlings will bloom when one-foot-tall and six-months-old. Thryallis is pest-free, only occasionally being bothered by caterpillars and mites.

Pests and Diseases
No diseases are of major concern.

by Edward F. Gilman

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Rebecca Jordi
Horticulture Agent IV
County Extension Director
Contributing Editor