How to grow Acalypha hispida

Acalypha hispida grow and care – shrub of the genus Acalypha also known as Chenille plant, Acalypha hispida perennial evergreen or as annual plant, used as ornamental plant but also can be used as edible plant (but need to know how to eat because the plant toxic) and for medical uses and in the right design, can grow in tropic, mediterranean, desert, subtropical, temperate climate or as houseplant and growing in hardiness zone 10b+as perennial or 8+ as annual.

Leaves color green in oval shape with serrated margin, leaves *edible and possible to eat only cooked (but need to know how because it’s toxic if not do it in the right way).

Acalypha hispida flower

Flower color red, flowers connects grow on stem in bottle brush and weeping in 10-30 cm, plants are dioecious male and female flowers grow on separated plants, but mostly the plants that you can be are only female.

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How to grow Acalypha hispida growing and care:

Moist soil, humidity, rich soil with organic matter, possible to grow in hardiness zone of 4-10a as perennial but need to put the plant in the autumn indoor and take it outdoor in the spring after the last frost

How to care:
when the plant young it’s important to cover the soil with mulch, after this put fertilizer 1-2 a year

What is the best way to start growing?
Plant / Seed (very rare, if it is exist)/ Vegetative reproduction (easy to start from cutting, season for cutting it’s in the spring, early in hot area and late after last frost in colder

How to propagate:
Propagation by cutting – require: high humidity, moist soil, half shade, keep the soil moist and don’t let it dry better to use root growth hormone and start in the spring in ~25C (77F), also will grow better in in greenhouse (possible also plastic box) than it’s possible to create high humidity like fog, another option to grow it in water and switch the water every few days, also in those condition need high humidity

Is it necessary to use vegetative reproduction?
Yes, but if you want to get male or female better to start with cutting

Difficulties or problems when growing:
Toxic to animal

Planting season:
Spring hardiness zone of 10b+ and annual / Summer / Autumn, and in the tropic all year, if it growing as annual plant better to start indoor in the winter than in spring take the plant outdoor after the last frost

Pests and diseases:
Aphids, spider mites, whiteflies

Pruning season:
Autumn / Winter

How to prune:
Just for design

Size of the plant:
1-3m, 3-10 feet

Growth speed in optimal condition:
Fast growing (need fertilizer and organic material) / Medium growing

Water requirement:
Average amount of water / Big amount of water

Light conditions in optimal condition for growing:
Full sun / Half shade / Full shade (with a lot of light)

Is it possible to grow as houseplant?
Yes, but need a lot of light in order to bloom, if it doesn’t bloom increase the amount of light hour in early spring, that will increase that chances for getting flowers

Growing is also possible in a pot / planter /flowerpot / containers:
Yes, start with container that bigger than the plant at least 30-50%, need to switch the soil once in a few years by new soil, better to do in the winter, wash the soil from the roots and cut the root and prune the plant, use potting mix or peat soil with perlite and mix it with hummus and organic matter, use chopped mulch to keep the soil moist, let the bottom of the pot fill in water but dry in the same day, for small cultivars possible to grow it in 15L (4 Gallons) big cultivars at least 25L (6.5 Gallons), always better to start to grow with small pot and grow with the plant.

Blooming information

Bloom season?
Spring / Summer / Autumn

General information about the flower:
Red flowers connects grow on stem in bottle brush and weeping in 10-30 cm, male and female flowers grow on separated plants.

Scientific name:

Acalypha hispida

Alternative names: Philippines Medusa, Red hot cat’s tail, Fox tail, Chenille plant

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