The Hypoestes is a species of flowering plant in the Acanthaceae family, native to South Africa, Madagascar and Southeast Asia. It’s a common house plant that is raised for decorative purposes.
Hypoestes is a charming small plant with brightly variegated leaves that stand out from most other greenery. The most popular Hypoestes plants feature a pink background with green specks.
The plant has more crust since there are many speckled or mottled types with purple, white, red, and rich hues and dramatic contrasts. These plants are not particularly challenging to grow, many gardeners treat them as annuals because they are native to warm climates. It is better to sow them in the spring.
The Genus Hypoestes contains about 150 species of flowering plants. It belongs to the Acanthus family. It is classified as belonging to the Justicini subspecies of the Rueli tribe.
Hypoestes is a shrubby plant with oval, delicate deciduous leaves. Under optimal conditions, the species can reach 30 inches in height and width. Hypoestes can be grown indoors as a houseplant or as an accent plant in a dish garden, window box or patio pot.
This places it in the same family as the American genus, including rightworts, water-willow, and mosaic plants. In the Indian Ocean and some adjacent areas, they are widely dispersed in tropical and subtropical lands.
Hypoestes Plant Overview
- Botanical Name: Hypoestes phyllostachya
- Common Name: Polka dot plant, flamingo plant, freckle face, measles plant
- Family: Acanthaceae
- Plant Type: Herbaceous, perennial
- Mature Size: 1-2 Ft
- Sun Exposure: Partial
- Soil Type: Moist, well-drained
- Soil pH: Slightly Acidic to Neutral
- Bloom Time: Summer or early fall
- Flower Color: Lilac or pink
- Hardiness Zones: 10 to 11, USDA
- Native Area: Madagascar
Hypoestes Plant Species
There are numerous variants within the primary genus Hypoestes. Each is bred for a specific leaf color. There are over 150 species of Hypoestes.
Carmina: This variety’s foliage has a distinctive tint, and stem cuttings are the best way for growing it. This variety’s flowers are a medium purple hue, and they bloom around the middle, tail end, or beginning of the summer.
Confetti: This type is compact and comes in a range of hues, including white, red, pink, and rose. This plant is appropriate as an annual and is frequently used as a houseplant.
Pink Brocade: The green leaves of this species of plant has pink dots on it. Its leaves grow to a height of 1.5 to 2.5 inches and are extremely dense and hairy.
Purpariana: The color of the leaves of this cultivar is purple. It requires full sun to thrive and is also a very lovely variety.
How To Grow Hypoestes Plant
The Hypoestes plants can be grown as annuals in temperate to warm climate zones. It is suitable for indoor use worldwide. As part of other foliage plants, flowers or a color display, this beautiful plant looks amazing.
It also adds texture for summer borders. In a moist, quick-draining potting mix, space the seeds at least 1-2″ apart. Increase humidity and warmth by adding plastic wrap to promote germination success.
Place it in a well-lit area. A grow lamp or bright windowsill .Ideal to keep them out of direct sunlight so they don’t overheat. Keep the soil moist but not soggy. In a few days, the seeds will begin to germinate.
The leggy plant is characteristic of Hypoestes. To prevent the plant from developing long, thin branches, you’ll need a set of pruning shears. Cutting or pinching the top two leaves of each stem weekly will encourage the tree’s growth habit.
Plants can grow healthier and more aggressively with proactive trimming. The blooms are attractive, it is best to remove the Hypoestes plant as soon as it appears to extend its growing season. The flowers, like the leaves, do not serve as an ornament in any way. After flowering the plant will either die or go dormant.
Stem cuttings are the easiest method of propagating Hypoestes plants in water systems. Every spring or summer, your success in cultivating healthy plants will be at its peak. Propagating Hypoestes plants from stem cuttings requires a clean set of scissors or shears.
You can either use a clean glass jar of water or a pot filled with peat moss or potting soil that drains well. The portion of the stem can be cut from any area of the plant. A minimum of 2-inch pieces should be used.
There should be at least two healthy leaves close to the top of the cutting. The cutting should be kept in a water container and in a warm location with some indirect sunshine.
Water should be changed every few days. You should start to notice roots growing in approximately a week. You can transplant the cutting into a pot with new soil once the roots are at least an inch long.
Hypoestes Plant Care
Maintaining a hypostasis plant is a fairly simple task. Two conditions necessary for growing Hypoestes plants are warmth and moisture. Hypoestes needs bright light.
The patterns on the foliage become more beautiful as they receive more light. They can also be grown away from the sun. This plant needs a lot of moisture. Avoid letting the soil dry out completely between watering’s.
The humidity level above 50% is required for Hypoestes. A little fertilization can be achieved when plants are watered using a liquid fertilizer. As a tropical plant, its ability to grow depends on high temperatures.
Soil And Fertilizer
Hypoestes plants prefer organically rich, well-drained soil. An all-purpose organic potting mix works well for this plant. For this plant, an all-purpose organic potting mix works well. Use some pumice or perlite to increase soil drainage.
It needs suitable soil which is chalky, clay, acidic or neutral. During the warm growing season, treat container plants once a month using an organic fertilizer designed for indoor plants.
Lightly aerate topsoil to allow plant roots to absorb moisture and nutrients before spreading fertilizer. During the primary growing season, fertilize the plant once per month. Drink water immediately after fertilization.
Light And Water
The Hypoestes plant benefits from regular soil moisture. Just enough water is needed to evenly hydrate the soil. Plants in containers will require more regular watering than plants in soil.
Winter watering should be slightly less. During the busy growing season between late spring and fall, water once a week. Root rot and plant mortality can result from overwatering.
Hypoestes plants thrive in direct, bright light. As a result the color of the plant will be vibrant. In low light conditions, the Hypoestes plant will quickly develop legs and lose its color. A spot with too much bright light will also fade the colors of the foliage.
Temperature and Humidity
The USDA growth zones 10 and 11 are the only ones where Hypoestes plants may survive; they prefer temperatures over 60 degrees F. As a tropical plant, it like to keep the plant at a comfortable 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
The main factor affecting this plant’s growth is moisture. It prefers relative humidity that is a little higher than that of the typical home. If the air in your home tends to be on the dry side, there are a number of things you can do to give plants a more humid microenvironment.
Pests and Diseases
Plants from the genus Hypoestes are attractive to pests such mealybugs, aphids, and scale. Plants should be treated immediately when an infestation first develops.
If you’re not convinced that using commercial insecticides is the best option, diluted alcohol works wonders on mealybugs and scales. Alcohol causes the bug to become instantly dehydrated.
Use a fresh rag or cotton to clean them. In addition to bugs, root rot and powdery mildew are common. Root rot is often caused by overwatering and insufficient air flow.