Monday, December 20, 2010

Shades of Green...

Coleus plants are colorful. I have only one coleus plant at home. My mother got a cutting from some place and gave it to my aunt. And when that plant grew, I got a cutting for myself. That’s the story of my coleus. I plan to add more coleus plants only after I prepare myself with pest-control techniques. :-)

You can either sow coleus seeds or plant a cutting. If you are at Bangalore, you can find the seeds at Lalbagh or any other garden shop. When you get a cutting, ensure that it is pest-free, and is not too short (an inch or two). And yes, you can plant more than one cutting in a container, with sufficient space between the cuttings.

You can grow coleus plants either in sunlight or shade. Their coloration varies with the amount of sunlight they receive. I have placed my plant outdoors, and it receives sunlight from the West. The colors are striking Green and Pink. The plant at my aunt’s house has different shades of Green and Pink because she has placed it on terrace, full sunlight.

Coleus grows well in almost all kinds of soil (well-drained); however, a lightweight substitute such as peat soil or sawdust is good. For the soil mixture, I have used Red mud, sand, peat soil, and manure (1:1:2:1). Do not over fertilize coleus plants. Do not over water them.

Fill the container fully, but lightly, with the soil mixture. If you plan to sow seeds, sprinkle the seeds on the soil, and gently cover it with more soil. Sprinkle water, and leave it. After a few weeks, you will see tiny plants. If you plan to plant a cutting, remove bigger leaves (or infected leaves) from the cutting, and then plant it. Keep the containers in partial sunlight or full sunlight (3-4 hrs). Wind and full sunlight (6-8 hrs) can damage the plants.

Time and again, check coleus plants for pests. Mealybugs love coleus plants. They hide behind the leaves, cling on to the stem, and slowly damage the entire plant. Oh, do they spread fast! Sometimes, I have handpicked these bugs. For pest-control information, see

Spinach and strawberry plants are co-existing. When the strawberry plants were small, I sowed spinach seeds, hoping to harvest them before the berry plants grew. Today, both the plants have grown well. Spinach is light green; berry plants are darker green. Nice to see those shades!

Today I fertilized them – horse manure. I have also sprinkled a pesticide (powder) on all the plants. (That’s the White powder that you see in the photos.) Probably, over the weekend or sometime next week, I will pluck the spinach leaves. Oh, I have paneer (India cheese) at home, and can prepare Palak Paneer dish! :-)

I love the shape of the strawberry leaves. I do not know if the strawberry plants are seasonal or ever-bearing. The strawberry plants may not have fruits this year, looking at the pace in which they are growing. That’s OK. I am happy as long as they grow well.

Rexes are colorful and mystic. The patterns can leave you dazed. Each time I look at a full-grown plant, I lose myself. That’s the time when I want to buy a small plant. After it comes home, boo, it doesn’t grow well. I am still experimenting with providing a good growing environment to the rexes.

These are a few new rexes that I bought. Praying that they grow!



  1. I do wish your rexes will grow well Asha. They have beautiful foliage. Love your coleus also :-D Good luck with your vege and strawberry! I hope the pesticide you use will be effective for your garden.

  2. Thanks, Steph. The foliage is what attracts me to them! Also look at I am such a fan of those Rexes!


  3. I do wish your rexes present grow recovered Asha. They bonk scenic foliage. Bed your herb also :-D Favourable hazard with your vege and birthmark! I hope the liquid you use module be operative for your garden.

    Pest Control

  4. Thanks German. As of today, a few Rexes have survived; have new leaves. The pesticide seems to have an impact. Sprayed another round early in the morning today.

  5. Steph, whenever I need motivation, I look at the photos of Rexes on that Web site. They are amazingly beautiful!


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