Coleus

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Scientific Name: Coleus blumei or Solenostemon scutellarioides

I. Botany/History

  • Family: Lamiaceae
  • Growth Habit: Herbaceous perennial, fast growth
  • Origin: Indonesia, Malaysia, Africa


II. Uses

  • Pots
  • Bedding plants
  • Hanging baskets


III. Propagation

  • Sexual: Seed
  • Asexual: Stem cuttings


IV. Growing/Flowering

  • Light - (photosynthesis, photoperiodic responses): Prefer shade/light shade, can tolerate full sun. i.e. 1500~3000 foot candles. Coleus will develop more intense foliage color in shadier conditions.
  • Temperature (recommended/necessary for different growth stages or growth regulation): Establish Coleus at 65F, after establishment grow 70-85F daytime temp. 55-65F night temp.
  • Water: Provide adequate moisture
  • Nutrition: Feed with complete fertilizers @ 150-200 ppm Nitrogen, E.C. of 1.2-2.0 is a good target. Provide clear water applications if excess soluble salts accumulate.
  • Media/Potting/Planting: Rich, well drained, at a target pH of 5.5-6.3
  • Atmosphere: Provide good air circulation at all times, maintain relative humidity 60-90% (if temperatures are cooler, lower humidity).
  • Growth Regulation: *chemical: Uniconazole ~ controls height and diameter. *Pinching growing terminals of young plants will encourages dense, compact growth.

V. Special Considerations

  • Osmocote is a well-balanced good slow release fertilizer.


VI Disorders

  • Insect: Mealybug, Aphids, White fly, Nematodes, Spider Mites
  • Disease: Stem rot, Root rot, Pythium, Botrytis
  • Mutations: Browning on the edges


VII. Marketing and Grading

  • Areas of production in U.S.: Everywhere


VIII. Postharvest Handling

  • Shipped to retailers and sold to everyone who is cool enough to incorporate Coleus in their garden.


IX. Cultivars: Thousands of Cultivars


X. References

http://www.ecke.com/datasheets/ff_ffx_cole.html