One weird plant per year, Kniphofia Red-Hot Poker
We seem to buy one weird looking plant each year. Last year it was the Kangaroo Paw Anigozanthos and this year we bought a Kniphofia or Red-Hot Poker. The Kangaroo paw was frost tender so the plant was a goner. Hopefully the Kniphofia will survive the winter as it is rated to -5F. A book mentions that you can lift the plant and store it in a cool place if the temps fall below -5 but I'll just pile on the mulch and hope for the best. The pot actually contained one flowering stalk but also many smaller plants that did not send up a flower. So next year I hope to post a photo with many of these torches in bloom.
As you can see the color becomes more vivid as the plant blooms. The first two photos show the plant as it first came from the nursery. The buds are sort of a dull light brown-orange-green turning to bright orange and yellow as the flowers open. There's a bug on the flower head in the first photo. Click on the photo to enlarge.