Lapageria rosea or Chilean Bellflower is a vine with beautiful red, pink or white hanging flower.
The flower is the national flower of Chile.
It is a climbing plant that grows in the forest and can grow to 10 m height. It meanders around trees and shrubs counterclockwise.
The leaves are green, leathery and lanceolate. They are alternate and have 3-7 parallel veins.
The flowers are scented, drooping, 8 cm long and have 6 thick and waxy tepals. The color varies from pink to red. The bloom usually takes place at the end of the summer and autumn, although it may bloom outside that period. There are many cultivars with variations of pink and red or snow white flowers.
The fruit is an oblong berry with a thick skin and many small seeds. The flesh is edible. Pollination occurs with hummingbird’s. In Chile, the fruit known as the pepino (cucumber) and was sold on the market but too much collecting and forest clearance endangered the species. It enjoys legal protection in Chile since 1977.
It is a slow grower but after the first few years it grows regularly. Flowering occurs after 3 years.
Chilean bellflower, Copihue
Lapageria: in honor of Empress Joséphine Tassher de la Pagérie, first wife of Napoleon Bonaparte
Rosea: from the Latin roseus (pink)
Temperate rain forests, up to 700 meters altitude
USDA zone 9-11, at 5 °C the foliage dies, at -2 °C the plant dies
Humiferous, rich and acidic
Partial shade, no direct sunlight
Don’t water with hard water, prefers rain water. Let the substrate dry half before you water again.
Should be kept fresh in the winter in an unheated room or hall, but frost-free in summer the temperature indoors is sufficient
During growth, universal liquid fertilizer every two weeks but half the dose
This plant really doesn’t like to be disturbed, repot only when absolutely necessary. Use a very big pot in which it will have plenty of space to grow for a long time.
Provide a solid support for climbing and secure the young shoots, they will not automatically attach
Seed, Suckers, Cuttings, Layering
- soak the seeds for 2 days, refresh the water 1-2 times a day
- sow in a light mix and moisten
- 18-21 °C
- germination: 1-3 months
- take a cutting half August
- dip the cutting in cutting hormone (optional)
- plant in light mix and moisten
- put the pot in a plastic bag and close
- rooting takes a long time