The genus Colearia is a member of the family Gesneria and includes about 65 species. In nature, the plant can be found from Mexico to Central America, in Colombia and on the island of Trinidad. It is named after Michael Kohler, who lived in Zurich in the 19th century and was a well-known teacher. This genus is characterized by its low requirements for humidity and temperature, making it much easier to grow than other plants in the family Gesneria.
Coleria is a perennial herbaceous plant or semi-shrub.
Its root-tuber is scale-like. The long, supratum-shaped, petiolate, ovate leaves are arranged longitudinally. The leaves have a dense pile-like coating on their surface, about 15 centimeters long and about 8 centimeters wide. Some species have red veins on the surface of the dark green foliage, while other species have a dark olive colored plate and a light colored central vein. Leaves may be glossy and ribbed or covered with a pile of red or white.
Hybrids may have silvery or bronze colored leaves. When growing in room conditions, this plant is distinguished by lush flowering. On an axillary flower stalk grows 1-3 flowers each. The corolla tube is about 50 mm long, slightly widened at the bottom and narrowed toward the pharynx. Corollas are bell-shaped.
The widely opened pharynx has five blunt lobes, their surface has many spots, dots and strokes. In natural conditions, the coloring of the flowers is very different: pink flowers have dark pink dots on the white pharynx; orange-red flowers have a yellow pharynx with dark red spots on its surface; brown flowers with white dots, and the white pharynx has a pink pattern.
- Flowering. July-November.
Needs bright sunlight, which should be diffused.
- Temperature. In summer and spring from 22 to 26 degrees, and in winter from 16 to 18 degrees.
- Watering. In spring and summer watering should be abundant and frequent, in the fall period conduct a gradual reduction of watering.
In winter, watering should be sparing and infrequent, while avoiding complete drying out of the earth's rump.
- Humidity of air. Normal for rooms in the living space. On hot days, the container with the bush should be placed on a tray filled with moistened expanded clay.
Feed the flower in April-October 1 time in 7 days, for this purpose use fertilizer for flowering plants.
- Dormant period. November-March.
- Potting. If necessary at the beginning of vigorous growth.
- Suitable soil mixture. It should include leaf and sod soil, sand and humus (4:2:1:1).
- Propagation. By seed and cuttings.
Scabies, spider mites, whiteflies, thrips and mealybugs.
- Disease. If the shrub is not properly cared for or placed in unsuitable conditions, it can have problems with foliage or flowering.
Unpretentious houseplants Coleria
Home care for Coleria
Colerias are very good on window sills facing west or east. If the shrub stands on a southern window, it will need shading from direct sunlight, you can use a transparent cloth or film.
And yet in this case the flower can be put deeper into the room. When growing a shrub on a window sill with a northern orientation, there is a high probability that flowering will not come because of the lack of light. In winter it also needs plenty of light.
In summer and spring time, the coleraria needs warmth (22 to 26 degrees), in winter time it needs coolness (not higher than 16 degrees).
How to water
In spring and summer, water immediately after the top layer of substratum dries out.
With the onset of autumn, watering is gradually reduced, and in winter it should be very sparing, but make sure that the lump of soil in the pot does not dry out. For watering, use well-drained water. Bottom watering is best for this crop, the fact is that getting water on the foliage has an extremely negative effect on its condition.
When grown at home, the bush develops within normal limits and at low air humidity. However, note that the higher the humidity in the room, the better the coleus grows and develops.
Spraying it with water is not allowed, because getting liquid on the surface of the leaves is extremely undesirable. If you want to increase the air humidity you should put the container with the flower on a tray with some moist pebbles in it, but make sure you don't place it in liquid at the bottom of the pot.
Feeding Colearia in April-October once a week with a fertilizer for flowering plants. From November to March fertilization is not necessary.
Bloom is usually observed in July-November if cultivated indoors.
Most often during the resting period the leaves and stems will not die back and therefore may not be removed, but trimming the long stems will have a positive effect on the formation of the root system. During the dormancy period the shrub needs to be cool (12 to 16 degrees). At this time, the plant is watered very sparingly and rarely, but it must be ensured that the substrate in the container does not dry out completely.
Potting coleuria is done if necessary after its root system no longer fits in the pot. Repotting is recommended by the method of transplanting, with the new pot being the same height as the old one, but wider.
A suitable mixture should consist of leafy soil and light turf and sand (4:2:1). Also suitable for this purpose is a substrate consisting of leaf, sod and humus soil and sand (2:3:1:1). Due to the fact that the plant reacts extremely negatively to stagnant liquid in the roots, it is recommended to pour a small amount of charcoal into the earth mixture and drainage layer. If the bush is still young, exclude turf from the soil mixture.
Coleria from seeds
Sowings of seeds are made in the second half of winter.
Use flasks for sowing, the seeds are spread evenly on the surface of the substrate, but it is not necessary to cover them with a layer of soil on top. A soil mixture suitable for sowing should include 1 part of leaf soil and 2 parts of sand. Once the seeding of coleus is completed, the soil mixture should be watered through a strainer, and the container should be covered with glass from above. The seeds should be aired every day, and still they should be placed in a warm place (20 to 24 degrees). Once the seedlings appear, the cover is removed, and the plants are piked into a larger container, using the same soil mixture as for sowing (see above).
When picking between the seedlings, keep a distance of about 20 mm. After 4-6 weeks of stronger plants pick repeatedly, and they are transplanted into a new container, keeping the distance between the seedlings of 30 mm. In separate pots, reaching 70 mm across, settle settle coleus only when the bushes are well developed, and use a mixture of light turf, peat and deciduous soil and sand (1:2:4:2).
Propagation coleus cuttings
The plant can also be propagated by cuttings, for this must be cut from the top shoots. For rooting, the cuttings are planted in a mixture consisting of sand and leaf soil taken in equal parts, or you can also use just sand.
The substrate is moistened, and then the container from above is covered with glass. Remember that because of too high humidity on the cuttings can appear rotten. To speed up the process of rooting, cuttings before planting are treated with a product that stimulates root growth, and you will also need lower heating of the container. The rooting process takes about half a month. Rooted cuttings need to be transplanted into separate pots, using the same substrate as for planting adults (see above).
Coleria houseplant: propagation by leaf at home
Diseases and pests of Coleria
Brown spots on leaves. To prevent the appearance of brown spots on the foliage plates of the coleus, use slightly lukewarm rather than cold water to water the shrub.
The leaves of the coleus turn pale. If the leaves are exposed to direct sunlight or if the bush is overfed, the surface of the leaf plates becomes faded and yellow spots appear on them.
The leaves have a gray patina.
If a gray scum forms on the leaf plates, it is a sign that the bush is infested with a fungal disease. This can occur due to excessively high air humidity and stagnant water in the soil mixture.
Leaf curling. Leaf blades can curl because the plant does not have enough moisture. To increase the level of humidity, it should be sprayed from a sprayer around the bush, using lukewarm water.
Care should be taken not to get the liquid on the surface of the leaf plates.
Coleria does not flower. Sometimes there can be no or very little flowering, with several reasons:
- Stagnant water in the pot;
- Recent room temperature too high or too low during the dormant period;
- Bush lacks light;
- Uber low humidity.
Coleria leaves wilt. If the bush feels a lack of light during the winter, its foliage may wilt slightly.
Why does a colearia flower poorly?
Pests of colearia
Most often thrips, scale, whiteflies, mealybugs and spider mites settle on this flower.
Coleria species and varieties with photos and names
Coleria bogotensis (Kohleria bogotensis)
This herbaceous perennial occurs naturally in the Colombian forests, and it prefers to grow on rocky ground. The shrub is about 0.6 m tall. The surface of the nonbranched, straight shoots has pubescence consisting of white or red hairs.
The pointed leaves are oval-cordate or ovate-oblong and up to 75 mm long and 35 mm wide, with a serrated edge. The front surface of the leaf blade is dark green, with pubescence along the veins, consisting of variegated white hairs. The pubescent pedicels are about 50 mm long and bear 1-2 flowers, which are axillary and drooping. The corolla tube is about 25 mm long, pubescent and pale red on the outside, orange-red on the bottom. There are speckles and stripes of red on the inner surface of the yellow pharynx.
Flowering is lush, beginning in the second half of summer and lasting until the first weeks of fall.
Kohleria magnifica (Kohleria magnifica)
The surface of the stem has red hairs. The leaf plates look as if quilted, they are glossy, and there is a pubescence of white-colored hairs on their surface. The large orange-red flowers have streaks of dark-colored hairs that go right into the pharynx.
Kohleria hairy (Kohleria hirsuta)
The foliage is bronze-colored.
The outer surface of the tube-shaped flowers has a red coloration, and there are deep red speckles on the surface of the yellow yawn.
Coleria spicata (Kohleria spicata)
Native to this species is Mexico. The bush is very small, and the leaf plates adorning it are elongated in shape. At the top of the long stems are red flowers whose pharynx is orange.
Kohleria lindeniana (Kohleria lindeniana)
In natural conditions, this species is found in the mountain regions of Ecuador.
This herbaceous perennial is about 0.3 m tall and has a pubescence of white hairs on the surface of the shrub. The ovate leaflets are about 70 mm long and up to 20 mm wide. The lower part of green leaves has a pale pink hue, with greenish or silvery-white veins clearly visible on the dark green surface of the plate. One or more axillary flowers are formed on pedicels that are about 60 mm long.
The corolla is bell-shaped, with flower petals and corolla tube length not exceeding 10 mm. The surface of the tube is pubescent with white hairs, its inner surface is yellow with speckles of brown at the pharynx, and the white outer surface has purple stripes on the folds. Lush flowering is seen in the first half of the fall season.
Kohleria digitaliflora (Kohleria digitaliflora)
In nature, this herbaceous perennial is most commonly found in the forests of Colombia. It has a dense pubescence of white hairs on the surface, and the stems are erect.
The leaves are elliptic (lanceolate or ovate) in shape, 18 to 20 centimeters long and 10 to 12 centimeters wide. The surface of the short-petioled green leaf blades is covered with hairs, denser on the outer surface than on the outer one. The axillary inflorescences bear up to five flowers. The corolla tube is about 30 mm long; it is white, tinged pinkish in the upper part. There are dots of purple on the surface of the green corolla.
The bush blooms most lushly in the last summer and first fall weeks.
Kohleria uneven (Kohleria inaequalis)
A medium-sized bush has not much pubescence. The flowers are orange-red, their lobes are reddish, and there are dark dots on their surface.
Kohleria pleasantis (Kohleria amabilis)
This herbaceous perennial is most commonly found in nature in the mountains of Colombia at 800 m above sea level. The surface of the green or red stems is covered with white hairs, about 0.
6 m long. Petioles are approximately 25 mm long. The suprotectively arranged ovate leaf blades are up to 100 mm long and about 70 mm wide. The front surface of the leaves is dark green or greenish, while the reverse is greenish, with silvery white lines and brownish red veins. There is pubescence on the outer surface of the axillary flowers, the corolla tube is pink with white or white with spots of purple near the pharynx.
Blooms last almost year round.
Kohleria eriantha (Kohleria eriantha)
The velvety, dark-colored leaf plates have an edge of red. The coloration of the pubescent large flowers is orange-red, and there are many yellow speckles on the surface of the lower lobe of the bend.
Kohleria tubiflora (Kohleria tubiflora)
In nature, it occurs in Costa Rica and Colombia. The bush is about 0.
6 m tall. The lower surface of the oval long leaf plates is red and the upper surface is dark green. The red and orange flowers are about 25 mm long.
Kohleria woolly (Kohleria lanata)
Native to this species is Mexico. The shoots are powerful.
The small, oval leaf plates, which are horny along the edge, have dense pubescence of pale hairs. There are dots of pale crimson on the surface of the orange-red corolla tube, they cover the lobes of the widely opened bend. The bush looks fuzzy due to the fact that small hairs grow all over its surface.
Coleria is an ampelous plant in the family Gesneriaceae. Home care