Pentas

Pentas lanceolata hybrids and cultivars

Family: Rubiaceae


This shrubby perennial is an outstanding plant for Qld if you're looking for something that's easy to grow and produces flowers over a long period.

Older varieties can grow over a metre tall, and will sprawl if not cut back occasionally. A good time to do this is just as they are coming back into vigorous growth in spring, but you might feel the need to give vigorous specimens an additional pruning once or twice during the warmer months.

Cutting back during the growing season may mean sacrificing some flowers, but they don't have to go to waste - put them in a vase in the house.

Newer varieties have been bred for a more compact form and will need much less pruning. You nevertheless might like to snip off the dead flower heads for is you want to be extra-neat.

Grow in full sun or semi shade. They are relatively undemanding with respect to water and fertiliser. They're perennial in the frost-free parts of Qld climate, but are treated as annual bedding plants in colder parts of the world

Pentas can be propagated from seed (allowing for that fact that seedlings may differ from parents), but cuttings are easy to strike.

The so-called "Giant Pentas" is another plant, Carphalea kirondron.

More Online Information


The following links are for general information - some cultivars mentioned may be unavailable in Australia
Growing Pentas San Antonio Botanical Garden, Texas
Egyptian Starflower, Egyptian Star Cluster, Pentas (Pentas lanceolata) Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Egyptian star cluster - Pentas lanceolata Texas ASLA (American Society of Landscape Architects) (PDF)
Pentas lanceolata University of Florida (PDF)
Choose pentas for outstanding color Mississippi State University
Pentas shine brightly in the heat, humidity Mississippi State University
Pentas lanceolata - Egyptian Stars Cal's Plant of the Week, University of Oklahoma
Pentas Perry's Perennial Pages, University of Vermont
Pentas Lanceolata post at Typicalgardener's Blog, Malaysia
Rooting Pentas: Influence of Macro- and Microelement Fertilization Reproduction of a Georgia Floriculture article at the NC State University (USA) website (PDF)

More information about Pentas coming to this page in the future.


Pictures

Click for larger image.

pentas pentas
Pentas


 

I am trying to identify this caterpillar which reduced pentas plants to stalks. Stay tuned.

April 2013, Brisbane
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