Rechsteineria: Greenhouse Plants
W – warm, minimum of 13°C (55°F)
I have included Rechsteineria cardinalis under Gesneria cardinalis. However, R. leucotricha is still widely referred to as such and is well worth knowing about. It is known as the Brazilian Edelweiss which pays tribute to its beautiful large leaves which are covered in silvery fur. These contrast well with the tubular shrimpy-orange coloured flowers which appear at least during late spring. This plant will form a massive tuber so that when it has finished flowering and begins to look tired and dowdy it can be allowed to die back to this. After a period of dryness and resting you will notice small furry buds on the tuber which indicates that it should be watered carefully and will grow again. It is possible that it will enjoy two growth periods in a year. Repotting is only necessary every two to three years, and eventually consists of simply replacing thein the same sized pot. Propagation is best by seed barely covered with compost at 21°C (70°F). I am sure it is possible to cut the tuber into several pieces each containing a growing point but I have never been able to summon up the courage to do this. I would take the precaution of dusting the cut surfaces with fungicide before planting into cutting compost.