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Jovellana - Growing Guide

Caring for Jovellana

These are attractive and popular herbaceous or sub-shrubs. When you first come across them it is difficult not to like them! They originate from Chile and New Zealand. Although closely related to calceolaria the corolla of their flowers is different. Jovellana flowers are divided into equal erect ‘lips’ with flat margins and without exhibiting the ‘pouch’ characteristic of true calceolarias.

Jovellana violacea is an upright growing subshrub achieving a height of around 3ft which produces suckers to enlarge and develop as a small clump. Its leaves are coarsely toothed or lobed and deep green. They remain on the plant in a mild winter. This plant is therefore semi-evergreen. It flowers away for long periods from early summer with pale violet flowers which have darker markings and yellow spots. These appear in panicles of up to 3in across.

Jovellana punctata is more of a herbaceous plant growing only to about 18in. Its flowers are a pale lilac with darker spots and a yellow flash.

Jovellana prefer a fertile well drained soil in full sun when grown outside. A dry winter mulch will help protect the roots in colder climates. If grown in a greenhouse they need shade from full sun which can scorch the delicate foliage and moderate watering with a balanced liquid fertiliser monthly in the growing season.

We propagate jovellana from cuttings from side shoots. When the flowering shoots have finished in late summer it will improve the shape of the plant for next year to cut these back and gently shape the overall plant.

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