January 2012: Horticulture Report

Plectranthus ecklonii is a sub-tropical plant from Africa which can be grown outdoors in Zones 9-11, but in colder climates it’s grown as a house plant.

P. ecklonii is an attractive fast growing plant which flowers profusely the first season after planting. The plant should be pruned back hard in mid-winter after its flowering season.

P. ecklonii is easily propagated from cuttings or seed.

The best time to take cuttings is spring or summer. Cuttings should be about 7 inches to 10 inches long, keeping the top leaves. Place cuttings in a shady, but well lit area, keeping them moist as rooting is rapid. Cuttings can be rooted in sand or other appropriate cutting medium.

P. ecklonii seeds can be planted in a shallow standard seed tray in standard soil. Cover with a thin layer of sand and keep moist. Keep in a shady, but well lit environment. Germination is rapid. The seedlings can be planted in individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle.

There are three P. ecklonii cultivars:

1. P. ecklonii ‘Medley-Wood’, which is the common garden cultivar with blue flowers

2. P. ecklonii ‘Tommy’, with white flowers

3. P. ecklonii ‘Erma’, with pink flowers

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