As a garden lover if you are looking for something attractive, yet low maintenance for partially shaded areas of the landscape or container garden you can go for blue lips flowers. The name of the plant may actually look awkward, but once you see the plant in full bloom in the garden, you’ll quickly become a fan to the plant. Continue reading to learn how to grow blue lips flowers.


Blue Lips Flower Info

The scientific name of the Blue lips plant is Sclerochiton harveyanus and the plant is a glossy-leaved spreading perennial shrub that is suitable for a woodland garden. The small to medium sized evergreen shrub is hardy in USDA zones ten and eleven. Actually in July, August, and September (December through March in Southern Hemisphere), small blue to purple flowers cover the plant, followed by seed pods that burst when ripe. The multi-stemmed shrub reaches six to eight feet tall (2 m.) with a similar spread in optimum conditions. Runners enable the plant to spread quickly. The elliptic leaves of the plant are dark green on the top and dull green below. The ribbed lower petals of the flowers give the impression of lips, earning its common name. The Blue lips plant is native to South Africa, from Eastern Cape to Zimbabwe. Named for Dr. William H. Harvey (1811-66), an author and professor of botany, the shrub is much underused in the nursery industry.


How to Grow Blue Lips Plants

Actually the Blue lips plant care is practically maintenance free, with little pruning necessary, and only moderate water needed once the plant is established. Grow the Blue lips plant in slightly acidic (6.1 to 6.5 pH) to neutral soils (6.6 to 7.3 pH) that are rich in organic matter. In its native environment, the blue lips plants can be found at the edges of forests or as part of the forest understory. The Blue lips plant attracts birds, bees, and butterflies so it is suitable as part of a pollinator garden or wildlife habitat in a semi-shady location. The Blue lips plant also is attractive as filler for a mixed shrub border in a woodland garden. Due to the plant dense foliage, it can be used as a unique hedge or even shaped into topiary. The Blue lips plant can be grown in a 3-gallon (0.5 cubic feet) or larger container on the porch or patio to enjoy the blooms up close and moved indoors during winter in the cooler zones. Make sure the pot provides excellent drainage. The Blue lips plant can be propagated from stem cuttings or seeds in spring. For semi- hardwood cuttings, dip the stems in rooting hormone and then plant in rooting medium such as equal parts bark and polystyrene. Keep the plant moist and the roots should develop within 3 weeks. For seed, plant in well-draining potting soil and treat the Blue lips seeds with a fungicide prior to planting to prevent damping off.


Pest and Disease Control in Blue Lips Plants

The Blue lips plants are not bothered by many diseases or pests. On the other hand, too much moisture or incorrect planting can bring on a mealybug infestation to the plant. You can treat with neem oil or other insecticide labeled to treat mealybugs. Fertilizing the blue lips plants each season can prevent yellowing of the leaves and also promote growth. You can use organic or inorganic fertilizer.

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