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Strobilanthes penstemonoides var. dalhousiana

I'm happy to be offering the rare Strobilanthes penstemonoides var. dalhousiana.  This beautiful perennial comes from forests of the Himalayas.  Each year it bursts forth with lovely pinkish-lavender blooms that resemble those of Penstemon, hence the species name.  It has been easy to grow for me, and has more cold-hardiness than typical Strobilanthes.  This is an uncommon and very hard-to-find plant.

Strobilanthes penstemonoides var. dalhousiana

It's an evergreen plant that grows 3-5 feet tall and about 5-6 feet wide, although you may prune it to any size.  It has attractive, deep-green leaves along upright, green stems.  Unlike some Strobilanthes, which bloom infrequently, this one blooms reliably every year.  In June it begins its show of tubular blooms, which continue into early autumn.  The curved, 1 inch flowers appear in clusters at the tops of each stem.  By mid-summer, the plant is covered in blooms and looks like big ball of bluish-purple!

Strobilanthes penstemonoides var. dalhousiana

Unlike the common, tropical Strobilanthes, this species comes from a cooler climate, so it enjoys milder conditions.  I don't have much information on what it can handle, but it has taken hot temperatures with cool nights.  It's possible that hot days with warm nights (above 65F / 18C) might stress it.  It reportedly has survived a light frost (28F / -2C).  Use caution at lower temperatures.  It grows well indoors in a pot or hanging planter.  This forest species prefers bright shade or filtered sunlight.  Protect it from strong sun exposure.  It likes fertile, well-draining soil that's kept evenly moist.  Over about 40% humidity is best.  In the right conditions, it's an easy and a long-lived plant.

 

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Turquoise Puya

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