Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Hemigraphis alternata (Red Flame Ivy)
Common name : Red Ivy, Cemetary Plant, Metal-leaf, Purple Waffle Plant, Red-flame Ivy
Native to India and Java, hemigraphis (sometimes commonly called red ivy) is a prostrate tropical perennial that typically grows to 6-9” tall and spreads indefinitely along the ground rooting at the stem nodes as it goes. It is primarily valued as a ground cover for its colorful foliage. Toothed, puckered, ovate-cordate leaves (to 3” long) are metallic silvery gray-green above and purple beneath. Tiny, five-lobed, bell-shaped, white flowers in 1” racemes bloom in summer. Flowers are insignificant.
Winter hardy to USDA Zones 10-11 where it is best grown in rich, moist, humusy, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. Best in part shade, particularly with some protection from the hot afternoon sun. Metallic foliage sheen may not develop well in full sun.
Average or above average warmth in summer. Keep fairy cool in winter - minimum temperature 60 F or 18 C. Bright light - avoid direct sunshine. Grow in soilless or soil-based potting mix.
Water freely from spring to autumn - sparingly in Winter. Use tepid water. Mist leaves frequently, especially in hot weather.