Monday, January 5, 2009

Iochroma tubulosa, Violet Tubeflower

Iochroma tubulosa, (syn. cyaneum) Violet Tubeflower
The Iochroma from South America are tall fast growing shrubs of the Solanaceae Family and are in flower from summer to autumn.They need a bit of space and care in their maintenance as they send out long shoots and stems in all directions and thus need quite a bit of pruning to maintain a good shape. Also if you turn your back on them for a second you will discover them chewed and disfigured by leaf eating caterpillars or invaded by mites which turn the leaves silvery.
This makes them the ideal candidate for the novice pruner to have a go at cutting them back as they always grow back with vigour no matter how hard they are cut. The flowers which are produced in masses in unique colours make it worthwhile including this shrub in any warm climate garden.

2017 update: I still have a very straggly specimen of the dark purple form in the garden. Propagation on request as it is not a stock item.

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