ASU professor breeds new maroon and gold flower
ASU fans can now decorate their front yards with maroon and gold flowers.
Landscape design professor George Hull bred the Sparky flower, which has a maroon throat and bright gold petals.
The flower is created from the red and yellow Tecoma flower, which Hull found in South America.
Tecoma flowers are also native to Arizona, but the red and yellow plants are not common.
Hull bred the Tecoma flowers for 10 years before developing Sparky.
It took Hull two years to develop the 20,000 plants needed to put the flowers on the market.
Landscape architecture senior Justin Meyer, a student in Hull’s class, has helped advertise the plant at various campus events.
“Me and several other students in my class were working to raise awareness of the plant and bring it to campus since it is related to ASU with the name and the logo,” Meyer said.
The Herberger booth at the Tempe Homecoming parade was covered in Sparky flowers, Hull said.
Sparky thrives in partial to full sunlight from spring to fall.
The flowers can be purchased at any major retailer that has a flower nursery, with prices ranging from $10 to $12.
“Sparky has done very well,” Hull said. “We have gone through 10,000 in the last 30 days.”
A portion of the profits earned from Sparky will go toward a fund for landscape architecture students, but this amount has not yet been determined.
Hull plans to have more Sparky flowers available to the public in the spring. Also in the spring, he plans to release his next flower, Sparklet.
Hull is developing a garden that will feature Sparky in a San Francisco garden show in March.
Exploratory social and behavioral sciences freshman Darlene Jones said she appreciates the statement ASU made by having a flower created by one of its own professors.
“It gets ASU’s name out there,” Jones said. “It makes ASU unique and different from any other school.”
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