Sinningia rupicola

  1. Better with age
  2. Feature table
  3. External links
  4. Publication and etymology
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rupicola:leafback
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Sinningia rupicola is one of the douglasii-type species, with dark leaves and streaked flowers.  Mauro's web site (see link below) states that S. rupicola grows in full sun and rocky soil.

My first plant only had a couple of anemic flowers before it died.  When I got another, I followed Mauro's advice and gave it lots of sun.  This did the trick as far as bloom, but it wilted frequently until I started watering it just about every day.

The leafback is the most striking feature, both for its color and for its sculpturing.  Some sinningias with red leafbacks lose the coloring in bright light, but not this species.


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Better With Age


The wise elder statesman of gesneriad judging, Ben Paternoster, has expressed the opinion that one should always be growing new things.  Once one has nurtured a plant for a while, one should move on to new challenges.

This plant shows why I respectfully disagree.  Sinningia rupicola is one of those species which steadily improves with age.  (I do too, but that's only because I had such a lousy starting position.)

The older it gets, S. rupicola (like several other sinningia species) develops more stems and more flowers every year.  The tuber gets larger and stores more energy, to fuel more development.

Feature table for Sinningia rupicola

Plant Description

Growth indeterminate
Habit Stem(s) upright
Leaves Dark green
Dormancy Stems deciduous, but stubs remain on tuber

Flowering

Inflorescence Terminal peduncle
Season Blooms in summer
Flower Red, streaked

Horticultural aspects

From seed Three years to bloom, under my conditions
Light Mine needs sunshine to bloom, but wilts easily, so it needs lots of water too.
Hardiness Survived 30F (-1C) in my yard
Recommended? Yes, but only for the patient.  It takes a few years to develop multiple stems.

Hybridization

Hybrids with this species See listing.

Botany

Taxonomic group The douglasii group of the Dircaea clade.



External Links

Publication

As Gesnera rupicola by Martius, in 1829.
As Sinningia rupicola by Wiehler, in 1978.

Etymology: From Latin rupi- ("cliff", nom. sing. rupes) + -cola ("resident on").