The most colorful and brightly colored among all the variegated indoor plants, hypoesthesia, surprises with shades of scarlet, pink and dazzling emerald. This mottled, spotted handsome man with a rather unusual color scheme requires no less special care. Hypoestes looks elegant, magnificent and imposing. And already by its extraordinary appearance, one can guess that the nature of the plant is not at all simple. Before buying hypoetesis, it is worth judiciously assessing your chances of success. And pay special attention to his requirements for the conditions of detention.
Hypoestes is a bright speckled plant. Farmer Burea-Uinsurance.com blasus
Description of the plant
Representing the family Acanthus (Acanthaceae) evergreen perennial with a non-standard “artistic” color hypoesthesia (Hypoestes) belongs to the plants that are the first to attract the eye in any setting. Even among the rich assortment of variegated stars, it will not be possible to find a plant that can outshine the speckled beauty of hypoestes.
And this is despite the fact that perennial plants – hypoesthesia in a potted form quickly degenerate and are cultivated as juvenile or annual stars requiring frequent replacement and renewal. The best strategy is to replace them annually with cuttings grown from cuttings, but with radical pruning, you can try to leave the plants for 2-3 years. The height of hypoesthesia depends on their formation. On average, the bushes grow up to 30-50 cm, but can be limited to much more compact sizes.
Pointed-ovoid leaves up to 10 cm in length sit oppositely on the shoots, but this does not impart severity to the plant. The base narrowed into a short petiole, the even or jagged edge does not interfere at all with admiring the patterns of specks and spots – asymmetric, overlapping the background by more than half. Thanks to them, throughout the world, hypoesthesia is better known as speckled plant (English – polka dot plant).
The color of the leaves of hypoesthesia resembles densely applied splashes of bright paint on an equally bright, but contrasting background – bright grassy, emerald or purple. Shades of hypoesthesia leaves are considered rare for a reason, because they are more reminiscent of a palette from a set of acrylic paints. Neon and candy pink, dazzling crimson, all shades of powdery and light yellow or white spots – one cannot help but be surprised at the beauty of the leaves.
The flowering of hypoestes is interesting, but somewhat “dangerous”: the appearance of spikelets from small flowers with bracts accreted into a veil leads to deformation and loss of decorativeness of greenery. And since hypoesthetics are grown as a decorative leafy decoration, it is better not to allow flowering at all.
Types of indoor hypoesthetics
Of more than a hundred types of hypoesthesia in room culture, mainly varieties and hybrids of two tropical species native to Madagascar are grown.
- Leaf spikelet hypoesthes (Hypoestes phyllostachya, English name Freckle Face) Is a compact shrub up to 30 cm high with medium-sized leaves. Among the varieties, pink and red spots on the leaves dominate.
- Hypoestes blood red (Hypoestes sanguinolenta) Is a larger half-meter shrub with wavy large leaves, decorated with purple veins and small red spots.
Growing conditions for indoor hypoesthesia
It is better to place hypoestes in rooms with natural high air humidity – kitchen, bathroom. This is one of the main plants for fashionable florariums and terrariums, decoration of compositions in flower showcases. But also an excellent candidate for decorating countertops, as an original alternative to “living bouquets”.
It is able to revive winter interiors and rooms that lack bright colors. And it perfectly “gets along” with other indoor crops, especially fittonia and ferns in compositions or in the tamping of large tubs.
Lighting and placement
The saturated colors of hypoesthesia themselves hint that this plant is very demanding on the quality of lighting. Direct sun, especially at noon, burns the leaves, but hypoesthetics need to be provided with the brightest possible lighting from among the soft diffused options. Choosing an east and west window sill or installing a diffusing screen on a south window is equally good for them.
The lack of light in cloudy weather, in autumn and winter, must be compensated for by additional lighting, otherwise color loss and stretching cannot be avoided. You always need to focus on the leaves: in a comfortable mode, their patterns and colors are brighter.
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Temperature control and ventilation
The minimum temperature that the plant will endure is 15 degrees Celsius, but the decorativeness of the hypoesthesia will lose when the indicators drop to 18 degrees. Throughout the year for this decorative leafy crop, stable, constant heat is preferable. The ideal is from 21 to 25 degrees, the heat should be compensated for by a proportional increase in air humidity. Hypoesthesia does not tolerate drafts and abrupt changes.
Hypoesthesia care at home
Hypoesthesia is more difficult to care for than its competitors, Fittonias. The plant requires stable soil moisture and frequent spraying.
Watering and air humidity
This plant is so sensitive to waterlogging that even a single inaccurate watering can lead to the rapid spread of rot. But drought also causes drying and shedding of leaves. The soil between waterings should be allowed to dry out by 3-5 cm in the summer and by 5-7 cm in the winter, and the water released into the trays should be drained immediately.
If the plant has bloomed, watering is reduced after flowering, but usually it is reduced for the winter, focusing on slowing plant growth. At any time of the year, frequent and moderate watering is preferred, rather than abundant and rare watering. It is better to water hypoesthesia carefully, without soaking the stems and greens. The water should be slightly warm (3-5 degrees warmer than the temperature in the room) and soft.
This is a tropical, moisture-loving plant that retains its decorative effect only at air humidity of 60%. Hypoestes love spraying, but care can be made easier by installing a humidifier, a drip of wet moss, using florariums and flower display cases, or grouping hypoesthes with other tropical species.
Top dressing and composition of fertilizers
Hypoestesses feed all year round, even in winter. In spring and summer, fertilizers are applied every 2 weeks, during the dormant period – once a month, halving the dosage. This crop requires special fertilizers for decorative deciduous plants with a high potassium content.
Pruning and shaping hypoesthesia
Regular pinching is necessary to form lush bushes. If stored for several years, it is advisable to carry out strong pruning in early spring – to hemp.
Read also our article Ledeburia – variegated silver.
Transplant, containers and substrate
This plant grows and ages quickly. The transplant is carried out annually, in early spring (at the beginning of active growth), only if the plant is preserved as a perennial, transferring it to a new container. If hypoesthesia is changed to young bushes from cuttings, there is no need for transplantation.
Hypoestes grows well in any loose soil with a neutral reaction. A universal slightly acidic (pH from 5,0 to 6,5) multicomponent substrate or soil mixture for ornamental deciduous plants is quite suitable (for example, a home mixture of equal proportions of peat, sod, leafy soil and sand). Charcoal and loosening agents (perlite, coconut fiber, coarse sand) can be added to the soil, but usually a high drainage layer (¼-pot height) is sufficient.
Hypoesthesia pots should be medium-sized, corresponding to the root system, with a subsequent increase of 1-2 cm. Planting several bushes in one container is permissible.
Diseases, pests and growing problems
Most often, hypoesthesia die from overflow and dampness. Rot spreads very quickly, so at the first sign of suspicious spots, it is better to immediately take measures to dry the substrate, trim the affected parts, and treat with fungicides.
Of the pests on hypoesthesia, whiteflies and aphids are more common, which are best dealt with immediately with insecticides.
All problems with hypoesthesia are visible on the leaves. They dry, turn black and curl at low humidity, fall off in dampness, cold and with a lack of fertilizing, turn pale and deform in the wrong light. And almost always, the first signs are replaced by stretching and growth disorders.
Reproduction of hypoesthesia
The easiest, but not very quick, way to grow hypoesthesia is to root the cuttings. Apical and stem cuttings, cut from strong, healthy shoots, root in soil or water, most quickly at temperatures from 25 to 30 degrees, with light substrate moisture.
On average, rooting takes at least two months. Plants, if desired to achieve a result faster, are planted not one by one, but up to 3-5 cuttings in a pot, starting to pinch as early as possible to thicken the crown.
You can also grow hypoesthesia from seeds, sowing them in the spring, with bottom heating, superficially.