Tropical flora such as Sanchezia plants bring the exotic feel of humid, warm, sunny days to the home interior. Discover where to grow Sanchezia and how to mimic its natural habitat indoors for big, healthy plants. Learning about Sanchezia cultural practices will ensure successful plant stewardship. Sanchezia plant care for outdoor specimens will vary a bit and can only be undertaken in USDA zones 9 to 11.
About Sanchezia Plants
Sanchezia (Sanchezia speciosa) is an evergreen perennial in the higher zones, though it may die back in zone 9 and return in spring. It is a semi-woody shrub with large, foot-long glossy leaves divided by thick colored veins. Flowers are bright red with orange bases and are carried on stems in long spikes. Technically, the flowers are modified leaves or bracts and have no reproductive organs.
Sanchezia is native to Peru and Ecuador. As a tropical plant, it requires moist, warm ambient air and dappled shade. In its habitat, the plant grows under the rainforest canopy and receives protection from the hottest sun. The rich humic soils of the understory in a tropical rainforest are moist and dappled by light. The large trees trap dew and water, which drip down to the forest floor. The whole effect is fecund and muggy, a veritable steam of nutrients and moisture bathing all the plants in the forest.
Where to grow Sanchezia? You can use it as a houseplant or in the tropical garden. Just ensure humidity is at least 60 percent so that it mimics similar effects as the rainforest.
Sanchezia Growing Information
These beautiful shrubs are easy to grow by stem cuttings. The only Sanchezia growing information you need to know is the best time to take cuttings. Take terminal end cuttings in spring when new foliage is forming.
Pull off the lower leaves to make a stem and dip into rooting hormone or alternatively, suspend the cutting in a glass of water. You must change the water frequently. Rooted cuttings grow best in peat under glass or with a bag over the planter to keep humidity high.
Sanchezia plants are ready for transplant when they have a thick base of roots.
Sanchezia Plant Care
Sanchezia grows in full sun as long as there is protection from noon-day sun. Partially shady areas produce healthier plants with less burning on the foliage. Temperatures must remain above 50 F. (10 C.).
Sanchezia plants need high humidity but allow the surface of the soil to dry out before you irrigate again.
Feed during the growing season with ¼ teaspoon of plant food per gallon of water.
The fast growing plants respond well to pruning, which can help keep it compact and diminutive enough for indoor use.
Watch for aphids and mealybugs, but otherwise the plant has no real pest problems. The biggest cultural issues are burnt leaves in high light situations and root rot if the soil is too boggy.
Sanchezia plant care is very straightforward and the plants make particularly good houseplants.