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HEMIGRAPHIS alternata

Image of Hemigraphis alternata

James Burghardt

Family

Acanthaceae

Botanical Name

HEMIGRAPHIS alternata

Plant Common Name

Red Ivy

General Description

The lustrous, purple and metallic silver foliage of this tropical plant is elegant. Red ivy is a low-growing, spreading tender perennial native to India and Indonesia. The puckered leaves are heart or oval-shaped, have scalloped, toothed edges and are silvery green on top and reddish-purple underneath. The prostrate stems sprawl along the ground, rooting when in contact with the soil. Interesting tiny, lobed, bell-shaped, white flowers are held in spikes on the stem tips. These appear in spring and summer.

Grow red ivy in warm, tropical locations with partial sun to partial shade and moist, fertile, well-drained soil. Brighter sunlight can be tolerated if the soil is moist. Low light conditions cause the leaf color to fade. In colder climates, this is a great houseplant or seasonal annual. Interior specimens require bright, indirect light, high humidity and evenly moist soil. Red ivy is beautiful in containers and hanging basket compositions. It makes a lovely groundcover for tropical beds and fills in nicely around bromeliads.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 10

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    11 - 15

  • Plant Type

    Tender Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    4"-6" / 10.2cm - 15.2cm

  • Width

    18"-36" / 45.7cm - 91.4cm

  • Bloom Time

    Late Spring, Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer

  • Native To

    Southeastern Asia, India

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Prostrate/Trailing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Purple, Dark Green, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Spring) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Purple, Dark Green, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Summer) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Purple, Dark Green, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Fall) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Purple, Dark Green, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Winter) Modifier

    Variegated

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Bedding Plant, Container, Groundcover, Hanging Basket, Houseplant, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No