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Turquoise Puya

Impatiens catatii

The island of Madagascar is home to many unusual species found nowhere else, like the awesome Impatiens catatii.  This fascinating species has little resemblance to common Impatiens, with its oddly-shaped blossoms and unusual foliage.  It happens to be easy to grow, putting out loads of these vivid, red blooms almost all year!  The plant is extremely rare in cultivation.  I don't think it is sold anywhere else online.

Impatiens catatii

Impatiens catatii is a perennial species that grows 2 to 3 feet tall, with rigid stems and an upright growth habit.  It has attractive, slender leaves that are glossy and appear pleated due to their recessed veins.  It flowers practically non-stop for me.  The glossy blooms are 1 inches long and have a curved spur, looking somewhat like a seahorse or shrimp.  This is a natural species, not a cultivated hybrid.  You might be able to cross-breed it with a few other Impatiens species, to create interesting, new hybrids.

Impatiens catati

It grows well for me indoors between 60 and 78 degrees F (16-26C).  I have not tried growing it outside that temperature range.  Some related Impatiens species resent temperatures above 85 degrees F (29 C), especially if nights are warm (above 65F / 18C).  It probably cannot survive freezing temperatures.  It grows well in bright, filtered light.  It can tolerate some sun, but it should be protected from strong afternoon sun.  Like most Impatiens, it prefers well-draining, fertile soil that's kept evenly moist.  Over about 40% humidity is best.

Impatiens catati

 

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