Growing and caring tips for Calceolaria

We are not used to having plants like Calceolaria . Perhaps due to excessive care. Perhaps because of the short presence of its flowers. Be that as it may, the indisputable thing is the rarity and beauty of its flowers. As short as they last, they are worth having some time and enjoying them.



If I say Calceolaria, the name may not tell you anything. If I tell you little Venus shoes either, but of course the name is much more sympathetic. This is how it is commonly known and it is not surprising given the characteristic shape of its flowers. In the shape of a bag or shoe, with very different colors ranging from white to yellow, orange, red and purple.

In any case, the common name has a lot to do with the scientific name. Still don’t see it? If I tell you that in Latin calceus means shoe?…. Now if right? Many times the etymology says much more than what the word seems to say at first glance. It is also known as clog flower or capachito

The genus Calceolaria has its origin in South America, without a specific place. It extends across the entire continent to Mexico. Normally all that we can find in the nursery or in stores in most places are commercial hybrids derived from Calceolaria crenatiflora. We will enjoy their blooms for a few weeks of spring-summer . It is usually one of those seasonal plants that few people keep them once flowered. “It costs less” to buy again the following year.


In the indoor plants that we are publishing, the maintenance conditions are usually high average temperatures, like those of a house, avoiding drafts and other considerations. Well this is a bit the antagonist of all of them.


What I was telling you. Its thermal optimals are in the low-mid range. Between 10 ºC and 15 ºC it will develop perfectly without cold problems. It tolerates the temperatures of a house. There is no need to worry. We are not going to lower the temperature of the house, only for the little plant in question.

If the thermal regimes are slightly higher than optimal, it is recommended that it be a cool and ventilated place. It can be a garden flower in warm and temperate climates but in summer, very shady and home in winter to protect it from excessively low temperatures.


It is difficult to find a beautiful plant with showy flowers that does not require full sun, to put it in those points of the house where the orientation is not the most suitable and not too much light reaches. We are not going to leave it in absolute darkness either, but it is more tolerant than others. Obviously a bright place will be better for you but that is always indirect or we will burn the leaves.


You need a high frequency of irrigation . In summer is when more water is going to ask. The frequencies can vary so to give a reference, do not dry the land between waterings. The earth always very humid. This will force us to water it several times a week. In summer even daily depending on the sites.


It is not going to put a lot of problems on a normal substrate. Although there are those who say that they do not need fertilizer, some applications of liquid fertilizer in their vegetative period will not hurt.


Unfortunately for seeds . And it is not easy. They are very small and the germination conditions are very strict. The seed must not be buried. Just drop it and press a little with your finger. Curiously, it needs a cool germination temperature of about 16ºC degree above degree below, for 3 weeks.

It is convenient to cover the seedbed or tray with something transparent. They need light for proper germination. The frequency of irrigation will be high during this period. Germination in early summer.

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