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Acalypha hispaniolae

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© RHS 2002

Characteristics

Plant type

Conservatory/Greenhouse, Shrub or Houseplant

Habit

Bushy

Resilience

Hardiness

old H1+3 (required heated glass; may be grown outside in summer)

Colour

Flower

Red in Autumn, Spring and Summer

Foliage

Dark Green in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter

Size

Ultimate height

0.5-1 metres

Ultimate spread

0.5-1 metres

Time to ultimate height

5-10 years


Preferred common name

Hispaniola cat's tail

Family

Euphorbiaceae


Acalypha can be evergreen shrubs or trees, or annuals, with simple leaves and catkin-like racemes of tiny flowers, brightly coloured in some species

A. hispaniolae is a compact, somewhat trailing shrub with neat, ovate dark green leaves, and crimson flower spikes 5 - 7cm in length, from spring to autumn

Synonym(s)

  • Acalypha chamaedrifolia
  • Acalypha hispaniolae pendula
  • Acalypha hispida 'Hispaniola'

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun
  • Part shade

Aspect

  • South-facing or East-facing
  • Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow under glass or indoors in a loam-less potting compost in full or filtered light. When in growth water freely and apply a balanced liquid fertiliser monthly. Water sparingly in winter, keeping barely moist. Can be grown outdoors in fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in sun or part shade but only in warmer climes

Soil

  • Moist but well-drained
  • Acid, Alkaline or Neutral
  • Sand, Clay or Chalk

Propagation

Propagate by softwood cuttings in early spring or semi-hardwood cuttings in late summer. Bottom heat will be required

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Low Maintenance or Patio/Container Plants


How to care

Diseases

Generally disease free