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Turquoise Puya

Lopezia grandiflora

This is a rare look at the beautiful Lopezia grandiflora from mountain forests in Guatemala and neighboring Mexico.  This unusual Fuchsia relative puts on a dramatic show of reddish-pink blossoms that attract hummingbirds.  This is a choice collector's plant that is almost never seen in cultivation.  I don't know anyone else offering it!

Lopezia grandiflora

Lopezia grandiflora is a small bush that grows about 5 feet tall and wide.  It has attractive leaves with an oily sheen that are about 6 inches long.  It flowers in fall or winter outdoors here in San Francisco, although it might bloom other times too if grown indoors, which i haven't tried.  The inch-long blossoms are shaped sort of like a sideways Fuchsia flower, and appear in big clusters and the ends of the branches.  My camera has a hard time capturing their beauty, but they are well-shaped with vivid color.  As an nice surprise, they are tipped with blue pollen!

Lopezia grandiflora

An old botanical print

 Since it's so rare, i have no information on its temperature tolerances.  Based on where it originates, i suspect it can handle warm conditions if nights are cool, but consider it experimental in consistently hot conditions with warm nights.  I don't think it can survive more than a light, brief frost.  In the right conditions, it is vigorous and easy to grow.  It enjoys part sun, and may need some afternoon shade in warmer conditions.  It grows well in a pot in a well-draining soil mix that's kept evenly moist.  Over about 40% humidity is a good idea.

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Turquoise Puya

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