Friday, July 29, 2011

Coleus Care

If you have a shady garden like I do, then you know that Coleus are great for adding color to a shady garden.  Sun coleus are also a great way to add color to containers in a sunny location.  Coleus is an annual (meaning it does not come back, it's only good for one summer).  Some people have luck bringing Coleus cuttings into the house in the winter, I am not one of those people.  Once a plant is inside my house, it's as good as dead since I cannot take care of indoor plants at all.  I guess I am just not an indoors person.  Here are some tips to keep your coleus happy and healthy during the summer months:

  1. Do not water leaves of coleus at night, this may cause the leaves to rot.
  2. Coleus do not require a lot of fertilizer.  The more fertilizer the less color the leaves tend to have.  I use either worm compost tea (available at lots of extension offices) or manure tea (available through )
  3. Keep soil moist, but not overly wet.  
  4. Pinch back or trim plants to keep them from getting leggy.  
  5. Pinch off blooms to encourage them to be more bushy. (Keeping the blooms on the plant will not hurt the plant, they just tend to grow taller and skinnier, rather than full and bushy).
Coleus 'Saturn'

Bloom on hosta, which should be pinched off.

Pinching off the bloom, simply means removing the bloom.

Here are some flowers buds that should be pinched off.

Pinching off a flower bud.

No comments: