Oxalis deppei or Oxalis tetraphylla (Iron Cross): growing conditions


We have spent countless spring and summer afternoons lying in a garden, enjoying the day, and we always find time to peel daisies or look for 4-leaf clovers. Well, today we tell you how to grow a more interesting 4-leaf clover with a beautiful flowering.


We are not going to talk about the clover. If we look at it in a meadow, natural, expanding and growing it will not seem strange to us. Now, when it begins to grow on the lawn of our garden, it is another story, right? If you are one of those who like a garden with thick, uniform and worthy of golf camo grass, you will have already fought more than once with clovers. Today we are not going to talk about that clover that gives the gardener of the immaculate lawn so bad luck and they say so good luck if he finds one with 4 leaves. Today we are going to talk about one that always has 4 leaves and also with different shades on the leaf and a very cool flowering.


If we take a good look at the leaves of the Oxalis deppei, we can see that its 4 leaves act as a cross, and its purple tone in the center can be reminiscent of rust … well, this is a bit taken by the hair. We are not going to go into historical connotations of the term Iron Cross but if you google it you will find a lot about such a war decoration. In this case it is pure coincidence and our plant today is called that.

The velvety texture of the leaves gives an air of softness very similar to that of the African violet leaves that we have already talked about in Gardenprue more than a year ago !!. Its flowering occurs during the summer, although with proper care, we can extend it until well into the winter cold. The plant is perennial and we will have foliage continuously if we do not live in places that are too cold as we will now see.



It is considered a perennial that supports winters down to -10ºC although we are not so sure of its endurance in its vegetative part. Being bulbous, it is quite possible that the bulbs will endure the winter in the ground and sprout again in spring. You need high direct sun exposure . Irrigation will come accordingly. It is not intended for interiors. It needs to be outdoors although you can always try it indoors cool and ventilated if you wish.


We must provide a light soil in texture. Loamy, even reaching loamy-sandy. The main reason is the non-tolerance to waterlogging , which forces us to provide it with good drainage. The soil must be light aerated and must have a good base of organic matter for its correct growth.

Remember how important organic matter is in the soil !



Its cultivation is very easy, very grateful as long as adequate irrigation is provided. You need to maintain a more or less constant soil moisture without getting it flooded. If the soil becomes too dry we will notice it immediately. The plant begins to decay and it will be the clearest symptom of the lack of water. There is no need to worry excessively as it recovers easily with immediate watering.

Oxalis deppei flower Photo by Dick Culbert


Extremely easy, simply by dividing the mat when it has reached a good size, so that it does not weaken. It can also be done through its bulblets, although the first option is the fastest and most comfortable.

If you like the Oxalis genre, we remind you that we already talked about one a long time ago. The Oxalis triangularis . Do not miss it because it is very special!

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