Scutellaria costaricana

This plants is native to Costa Rica, where it grows in the mountain forests at elevations as high as 2,000 m (6,500 ft). It is grown as a house plant for its lovely, glowing red flowers which are borne in rich terminal clusters. It is a member of the mint

family, so it has a bilabiate corolla with two lips: the upper one is red and the lower one is yellow. The corolla tube is strikingly long. The opposite leaves are pointed ovate with toothed margins. The stem is quadrangular, another typical characteristic of plants of the mint family.

Because it is exposed to rugged conditions at night in its native habitat, it does not need very warm conditions in the home. Propagate by tip cuttings, when a higher temperature, about 22° C (72° F), is required. Young plants may be pruned to promote bushy growth, but this generally results in smaller inflorescences. As a rule, three to four plants are planted together in a single pot.

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