Purple Shamrock

By June 2, 2021Blog Post
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You might have seen the Mile Marker boards that parents create for their children – they highlight things like the height, weight, likes, and dislikes of their child at various stages of life. We at Nick’s Garden Center think Plant Parents should have something like this for their Plant Babies as well! Our Plant Parent Chalkboard Photos and blogs will provide you with an overview of what each plant needs in order to “grow up” happy and healthy!

Calling all “black” plant lovers! While plants that appear to be black are actually an incredibly dark purple, they still have an appealing look for those drawn to these non-typical shades of flowers and foliage. Oxalis Triangularis is available in the standard green of typical houseplants, but is made extra special by also being available in the sought after “black” shade. Both colors of plant would require the same type of care we’ll list in this blog.

Oxalis Triangularis, native to Brazil, is a compact little plant, growing to be up to 12 inches tall and 12-24 inches wide. Its foliage is composed of three triangle shaped leaves, and has a whispy quality. The flowers of Oxalis Triangularis are a light lilac purple and shaped like bells. Oxalis Triangularis has another feature of interest – it folds up its leaves and flowers at night! This plant is not pet or people safe, and does not clean the air around it, but we think its special features make up for the lack of these attributes.

Plant Oxalis Triangularis in a well draining pot with well draining soil, and place it where it will get bright, indirect light (and be safe from little paws, both human and animal). As with many houseplants, allow the top inch to dry out before watering (this not only helps to keep the plant from being overwatered, it also helps to cut down on gnats flying around your space). Because it is a plant that grows from a bulb, it will not bode well for the plant if the soil it sits in is over-watered. It is possible for Oxalis Triangularis to go dormant, most often in the summer. If this happens you will see growth slow down and it’s possible that the plant will appear to be in decline. As long as you have been giving the plant proper care, never fear. Just cut back your watering (use a Moisture Meter to measure the level of moisture in the soil) as the plant will be using less water during this stage, and wait for it to spring back to life. Water using the “Drench and Drain” method – allow a stream of water to flow into the soil, then allow all of the water to drain out before you replace the plant in its decorative pot or set the decorative pot back in a drip tray.

Rotate Oxalis Triangularis often to help it grow evenly, as the side that is facing a light source will grow more actively than the side that is not. If the plant appears “leggy” (which means that the leaves are stretched out much further apart on the stems) move the plant into a place with more light. Try to keep this plant away from vents and doors and any other source of extreme heat or cold. In general, Oxalis Triangularis likes temperatures around 55-75 degrees at a somewhat steady rate without any major fluctuations in temperature.

Because this little plant requires somewhat higher levels of care and attention, we rate this plant as being best for intermediate level Plant Parents. It would not be the best plant for first time Plant Parents, or those who travel often or do not have some time they can set aside to care for their plants.

Happy Plant Parenting!


Author Nicks

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