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Coleus Recovery

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2005
by Carly on January 29, 2005 03:59 PM
I was pleasantly surprised to find I've been able to get coleus through the winter - it's the first time I've had any success with it.

The only pot of coleus I had trouble with was this one - it went on the lam a few days ago - started hanging it's head during that deep freeze.

I brought it into the apartment, cleaned the pickings out of 'er, topped up the soil and trimmed it a bit.

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Does anybody else raise these plants through the winter?

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When sorting seeds, do not whistle.
by planesjimmycam on January 30, 2005 01:38 AM
Hi Carly,
I like to grow colues both in and out of the house. I have found that the first frost will kill all my coleus,so just before then I take cuttings, or collect seeds to start over the winter. Colues roots very easily from cuttings(in soil or water).
It looks like your plant is in fine shape, and will enjoy the warmer temps in your home.
Regards,
Jim
by Carly on January 30, 2005 08:52 AM
Y'know Jim, I conducted a little experiment last fall - I was reading where coleus isn't affected by the sun in the same way other plants are - that's why the leaves are 'variegated' or whatever that 50 cent woid is . . .

I figured, ok - let's see what happens. I put a sprig of it in my shade garden which doesn't get much light at all, even when the leaves are almost off the trees.

I want to tell you, that little plant survived, with its full colours intact right up till the snow fell on it.

Life is just amazing, eh?

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When sorting seeds, do not whistle.
by Carly on January 30, 2005 08:58 AM
I just realized something - I misled you.

When I said the coleus was failing from the cold, I meant a draft from the office window - I didn't have the plant outside.

Most of the plants in the office (where I'm also growing seeds under a fluorescent light)are doing well. Other than the one pot of coleus there, the window plants have even been growing.

In a Canadian Gardening article from last year, it said that you really CAN fertilize during the winter - as long as a plant is getting light, warmth and is growing, you can mix your fertilizer to 1/4 of the strength you'd normally use in spring and summer.

Water each time with the weak mix.

Well, I'm going to do that with some of my stuff -I find my coleus seems to like the tea (without the milk, of course) I feed it twice a week.

But I do have other plants that might like that mix that was recommended.

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When sorting seeds, do not whistle.
by Cricket on January 30, 2005 09:14 AM
Carly,

I've kept coleus throughout the winter. Years ago I had a trailing coleus that reached the floor. Can't remember for certain how old it was, but I think a couple of years. The past couple of years haven't been too sucessful for me though - I wish I knew what I'm doing differently!

The trick is to ensure the plant doesn't go to seed. I clip off the buds before they even have a chance to develop.

It doesn't appear that the draft did lasting damage - your coleus is beautiful!
by TomR on January 30, 2005 02:26 PM
I LOVE coleus!!! I always grow a bunch inside over winter. You could take a few cuttings from that nice plant and start some new ones. I'm going to be doing that with some of mine in the next few days. Mine are in a south and west window.

Tom

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My memory's not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my memory's not as sharp as it used to be.
by Carly on January 30, 2005 04:25 PM
Yes, that's right - you aren't supposed to let them 'flower'. You're supposed to take off those bits that come up on the stock.

Well, I knew it could be done - it was just me . . . I didn't have any luck doing it. Guess it's because I've got two good windows here.

That was over 10 years ago - we lived in a place up on Annette St. The gardening space was fine outdoors but we didn't get much light at the windows - the verandah and the back porch were covered, of course.

As I recall, I couldn't get any jade growing either - that must have been the reason for it. I might try some more. I've waited all this time to realize I have two perfectly good windows here.

I do have another one - the bedroom window faces south but that's where our cat, Skitter takes up her post to hiss and howl at her friends who are allowed out at night.

Skitter is fond of knocking things out of the way if they are sitting in any of her favourite spaces.

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When sorting seeds, do not whistle.
by JustAGirl on February 03, 2005 03:33 AM
I left my coleus outside this winter and well I dont think it's completely dead but it doesn't look good *L* This was my first time with a coleus and guess I didn't think about the frost. Obviously I'm not the best gardener *L* Wondering if it would still be possible to take a clipping from it so I'll have coleus this spring. I'll see if I can get a pic of mine posted.
by Cricket on February 03, 2005 06:23 AM
I would take a clipping from it, stick it in water, and when it roots you'll have a beautiful new coleus!
by Meg on February 03, 2005 02:05 PM
Now, I know my memory is gooooooooone, but if I recall, when I was a little girl, my mom had some coleus planted by the side of the house. And marigolds. Both spread, rapidly. We lived in Norfolk, VA at that time. I don't seem to recall her ever pulling it out, or taking clippings to replant it.. I just remember that the coleus was thriving & growing like crazy! It started out as one small plant, and spread all the way down the length of the house. I also think the color was a bit different, so maybe it was a different variety? I think it was kinda purple & green, with maybe a little white. I thought of getting some myself, but I have so little yard, and so many new seeds to try!! I can't wait for spring! [flower] [flower]

Meg

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