Bartlettina sordida, commonly known as the Blue Mist Flower or Purple Torch, is a stunning evergreen shrub native to the cloud forests of Mexico. It's prized for its large, velvety leaves and massive clusters of fuzzy, bluish-lilac flowers that bloom in spring.
While it might seem like an exotic diva, caring for Bartlettina sordida is actually quite doable, as long as you can provide the right conditions.
Here's what you need to know about growing and caring for Bartlettina sordida:
Climate: Bartlettina sordida thrives in mild temperatures and prefers bright, dappled shade. It's not frost-hardy, so protect it from temperatures below 25/30°F (-3.9°C).
Soil: Plant your Blue Mist Flower in moist, well-draining soil rich in organic matter. A slightly acidic soil is ideal.
Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy. Water deeply during dry periods, but avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot.
Fertilizing: Fertilize lightly once a month during the growing season with a balanced fertilizer.
Pruning: Prune your Bartlettina sordida after flowering to maintain its desired shape and size. You can also prune lightly throughout the year to remove any dead or diseased branches.
Propagation: Bartlettina sordida can be propagated by seed, semi-hardwood cuttings, or air layering. Seed propagation is the most challenging method, while cuttings and air layering are more reliable.
Here are some additional tips for growing Bartlettina sordida:
Mulch around the base of the plant to help retain moisture and suppress weeds.
Deadhead spent flowers to encourage further blooming.
Bartlettina sordida is relatively pest- and disease-resistant, but watch out for mealybugs and scale insects.
If you live in a colder climate, you can grow Bartlettina sordida in a container and bring it indoors for the winter.
Supplied in an 11cm pot at 20 to 30 cm height.