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Sinningia leucotricha (Brazilian Edelweiss)

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Scientific Name

Sinningia leucotricha (Hoehne) H.E.Moore

Common Names

Brazilian Edelweiss

Synonyms

Rechsteineria leucotricha

Scientific Classification

Family: Gesneriaceae
Genus: Sinningia

Description

Sinningia leucotricha is an attractive succulent with a large rounded tuber from which a few short stems emerge, holding 2 or 3 opposite pairs of small, fuzzy, silver leaves. The tuber can reach a foot (30 cm) in diameter. Leaves are up to 6 inches (15 cm) long and up to 4 inches (10 cm) wide. Flowers are salmon-colored and appear just above the foliage in spring to early summer. The foliage starts to lose the silver cast as flowers fade and then ultimately drop off to start a dormancy period. Still, timing is not always predictable, and the leaves will sometimes stay on the plant longer, only shedding them when new leaves are emerging in early spring.

Sinningia leucotricha - Brazilian Edelweiss

Photo via burwur.net

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 45 °F (+7.2 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Sinningias grow from tubers, so there is seasonality to them. When the plant is actively growing, keep it lightly moist. When the foliage dies back, just mist the soil regularly to keep the tubers from drying out too much. Start your regular watering when new leaves start to show. As with most plants, Sinningias can survive a short drought, but they don't recover from drowning. Use tepid water when watering. Nobody enjoys a cold shower. Water the soil, not the plant. Sinningias are prone to crown rot and gray mold, which happens when the leaves stay wet. Do not let the plant sit in water. It must be well-drained.

Sinningias are shade plants. They have the same light requirements as an African Violet. Morning or soft, late afternoon light is best. That means an East, shaded West, or North-facing window. By all means, avoid direct sun during the harsh "skin cancer" hours of the day. See more at How to Grow and Care for Sinningia.

Origin

Native to Brazil.

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