what is a lipstick plant?
A lipstick plant, scientifically known as Aeschynanthus, is a genus of flowering plants in the family Gesneriaceae. The name “lipstick plant” is most commonly associated with Aeschynanthus radicans, which is popular as an indoor houseplant. It earned its common name because the plant’s flower buds peek out of dark-colored tubes, looking like a miniature tube of lipstick.
The lipstick plant is native to tropical areas where it grows as an epiphyte in the wild (meaning it grows on other plants without being parasitic). It is a favorite among indoor gardeners because of its striking, tube-shaped flowers and attractive, glossy foliage. It’s also relatively easy to care for, making it suitable for hanging baskets or high shelves where its trailing vines can drape down elegantly.
how to propagate lipstick plant?
Propagating a lipstick plant is typically done via stem cuttings, which is a straightforward and efficient method. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to propagate a lipstick plant from stem cuttings:
- Take the Cuttings:
Select a healthy stem with at least 2 to 3 sets of leaves. The cutting should be about 4 to 6 inches long.
- Prepare the Cuttings:
Remove the lower leaves from the cutting, leaving at least 2 to 3 leaves at the top.
- Rooting Hormone (Optional):
Dip the cut end of the stem into rooting hormone powder or gel. This step is optional but can help accelerate root development and increase the chances of successful propagation.
- Plant the Cuttings:
Fill a pot with a well-draining potting mix that’s suitable for tropical plants.Stick the cut end of the stem into the soil mixture, making sure at least one node (preferably two) is buried where the leaves were removed.
- Create Humidity:
To maintain humidity around the cutting, you can cover the pot with a plastic bag or a plastic dome, making sure the plastic doesn’t touch the leaves.
- Place in Indirect Light:
Position the pot in bright, indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight, which can be too intense and lead to the cutting wilting.
Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy. Overwatering can cause rot.
- Watch for Growth:
Roots typically begin to form within a few weeks. To check for root growth, give the plant a gentle tug. Resistance usually indicates that roots have formed.
- Care After Rooting:
Once you see new growth, start caring for the cutting as you would a mature lipstick plant. Gradually acclimate it to the environmental conditions of your home by removing the plastic cover over time.