Senecio-Cruentus

Cineraria is a hybrid of fairly uncertain parentage.

One parent is thought to be S. cruentus, native to the Canary Islands. Nowadays, there are innumerable cultivars including varieties with white, pink, blue or violet blooms, and even ones with bicoloured flowers – red and white, blue and white, etc. Interestingly, horticulturists have not succeeded in developing a yellow-flowered Cineraria, even though yellow is a common colour of other Senecio species. When the flowers are finished the plant is discarded. In nurseries it is propagated every year from seed. It is frequently planted outdoors in ceramic containers in parks and public gardens and is used as edging for beds with other ornamental plants.

Because Cineraria originated in mountain forests with very high humidity it requires a very moist atmosphere in the home; moreover, the large leaves take up a lot of water. Besides regular watering, it is necessary to stand the pot in a bowl of water so that the root ball does not dry out. Misting is inadvisable because it can damage the flowers. It requires light, but not direct sunlight which makes the flowers fade.

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