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How to Grow and Care for Lipstick Plants

Aeschynanthus radicans

This plant requires or will tolerate shade during the heat of the dayThis plant will tolerate some drought, but benefits from periodic wateringThis plant needs a thorough, deep weekly watering, Double icons require boggy or wet conditionsVining PlantsThis can be grown as a House PlantRed flowering plantA Lipstick Plant in Bloom, Aeschynanthus radicansHow to Use the Plant Care Icons at The Garden Helper
Lipstick Plants have thick, glossy, dark green leaves growing in pairs along their long, woody stems.
Each vine is tipped with clusters of 2" tubular, scarlet red flowers emerging from maroon calyxes in mid-summer.
They are tropical, epiphytic vines that are native to Indonesia.
As house plants they are most often grown in hanging baskets but can be trained to climb up a three foot totem as well.
Deeder the Garden Gnome

Growing Requirements for Lipstick Plants

Lipstick Vine plants are only hardy in USDA zones 11 and 12
where they should be grown in partial shade.

When they are grown as house plants, they are happiest when kept in lots of bright, indirect light or beneath fluorescent grow lights all year. Never keep them in direct sunlight.
The ideal growing temperatures are 70°-85° during the day and 65°-70° at night, but never below 65°.
Lipstick Plants bloom best when they are kept a bit rootbound.
They should be potted in a rich, well-drained, peat moss based planting mix and be kept evenly moist during the growing season, but allowed to dry out slightly between waterings in the winter.
They thrive in fairly high humidity, so they should be misted daily if the air is dry.

Lipstick Plants are susceptible to attacks from aphids, thrips, scale insects and mealybugs.
Regular pruning is necessary to keep your Lipstick Plant from getting leggy.
Prune the longest stems back to six inches above the soil after blooming, to induce new growth and branching.
New growth will sprout at the point of the cut.

Propagating Lipstick Plants and Growing them from Seed

Lipstick Plants can be propagated with 2" stem cuttings taken from new growth at the tips of non-flowering vines in the spring or early summer and rooted in a moistened mix of peat moss and perlite.

Layering is another, fairly quick method of propagating new Lipstick Vines. Pin a stem node to the soil in an adjacent pot or tray, using a piece of stiff wire bent into a U. Cover the pinned area with moist soil. Once the layer is well rooted, it can be severed from the parent and repotted.

Sow Aeschynanthus seeds indoors at any time, barely covering the very fine seeds. Maintain a temperature in the growing medium of 75° until germination, which takes 10-12 days.

Lipstick Plant
Aeschynanthus radicans
A Lipstick Plant in Bloom, Aeschynanthus radicans

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