Yesterday Today and Tomorrow plant

A Swallowtail butterfly enjoying Yesterday today and tomorrow blooms. Photo courtesy of Velvet Heller.



This is a lush, green shrub that will only take light frost. But if you live in a warm sunny climate where you only get mild frosts occasionally in the winter then you can grow the ‘Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow plant. It will not only catch the attention of passers-by when it flowers in three stages of flower colors, but it can be kept trimmed to offer handsome green in either a semi-formal or informal garden. The Latin name for this fascinating bush is Brusfelsia pauciflora.

The Yesterday Today and Tomorrow is a plant with glossy leaves that grows to about three feet tall. It likes a rich soil, but is tolerant of a wide range of less than ideal soils. It is mildly drought tolerant but prefers regular water with good drainage. Give it full sun except in hot desert areas when some shade would be in order.

The plant gets its name from its changing flowers that were deep purple ‘yesterday’, lavender ‘today’ and finish white ‘tomorrow’. These sizable open-faced flowers fill this evergreen bush during its long blooming period with three different colored blooms all at once.


Cheerful flowers change color day to day.

The Yesterday Today and Tomorrow bush is not difficult to grow and blends in well with other plants. Use it in a cool-colored garden with blues, purples, pinks and whites, or use it for contrast with bright colors. It also fits in nicely with pastel shades. Although the plant looks best trimmed lightly with a slightly rangy habit of growth, it will accept more harsh, formal shearing, but you are likely to remove the best attributes of the plant – those multi-colored flowers – if you insist on cutting it back this way. There are plainer shrubs that would probably be a better choice for this kind of highly controlled treatment. Instead, use the Brunsfelsia paudiflora where it can show off its unique beauty in a natural-looking border, as a backdrop for other flowers or a stand-alone focal point. The Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow bush is also an excellent choice as a specimen plant to grow in a container.