Growing Gloxinia - Knowledgebase Question

Newbern, NC
Avatar for joec5
Question by joec5
August 23, 2000
I brought a gloxinia home from the grocery store and planted it outside in a rather sunny spot. It looked like it died- something chewed it up to almost nothing. I started giving it miracle gro, watering it more, and sprayed with a pesticide.. It has come back beautiful now with gorgeous purple flowers. I'm flower illiterate. Please help me keep it looking this way. Is it even supposed to be outside in the ground? If so, how do I prepare it for the cold weather. What should I expect to see in the spring if anything at all?! Is it a bulb or does it produce seeds so that I can plant more?? thanks so much for helping me!!!!!

Answer from NGA
August 23, 2000
Gloxinia (Sinningia speciosa) is a tuber. It can bloom in any season, up to two times per year, but needs a cycle of dormancy in between bloom periods. Here's some basic growing info. The tuber is usually planted about 1 inch deep in a soil rich in organic matter. Water lightly until leaves start to grow, then increase watering. Fertilize regularly (which you are doing with your miracle gro) during the plant's growth season. Gloxinia usually prefers a shady site, or filtered light, if planted outdoors, so you must have a green thumb to have it doing well! Indoors they take bright light.

Five or six weeks after the plant stops blooming, let the soil dry gradually. You can dig the tubers and store them in a cool, dark place (store in some moistened peat moss so the tuber won't dry out) or if you have it in a pot, store the entire pot with barely moist soil. When the tuber starts sprouting again, begin watering and fertilizing for another bloom cycle.

You can propagate by dividing the tuber, rooting leaf cuttings, or by seed. Seed does best sown on top of moist peat moss in a humid, warm, bright location. Don't allow the seeds to dry out. Hope this info helps!

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