A striking, yet undervalued gem. Black Pagoda Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus lobbianus) is hard to find in nurseries but is a good addition to any landscape and is always popular with pollinators.
There are several reasons this plant is so attractive. The glossy black leaves are as richly expressive as a raven’s feather, with dramatic patterns on the underside that can be seen during the day or night – especially if the lip is held up to a light source!
The Black Pagoda Plant grows so easily in hot and humid climates you might suspect it’s a weed. What a nuisance weed would be in the garden! Fortunately, that’s not the case. Its specific growing conditions mean it is easy to cultivate once you figure out what they are.
What is a Black Pagoda Plant?
The Lipstick Black Pagoda is a beautiful yellow flower that blooms typically in later winter and spring and its botanical name, Aeschynanthus, is derived from the Greek words aischun and anthos, which together mean “flower”.
The difference between lipstick plants and columnea is that lipstick plants have thinner flower petals with a more prominent center, whereas columnea has dense flower petals that are less noticeable. Both species have alluring tabular flowers.
The Black Pagoda plant is a popular houseplant, but one which can prove difficult for beginners to grow. It requires high humidity and very little sunlight to thrive and tends to drop its leaves when under stress. Follow these simple tips and you’ll be able to keep this lovely plant thriving in its decorative pot.
Origin and Classification
The Black pagoda plant originated from Asia, specifically Thailand and Malaysia. It thrives in warm environments and is extremely tender; if you do not maintain a perfect temperature balance, the plant will not flourish and might even die due to cold temperatures. Proper lighting and water are essential to the proper growth of this plant.
Features of Black Pagoda Plant
The Black Pagoda plant is a better choice for people who want a plant that also functions as an accent piece. You can put the Black Pagoda anywhere in your house and, because of its unique and versatile design, it will still look like it belongs there.
This plant’s mottled leaves have purple undersides, making it a striking addition to any garden. Its color is eye-catching and contrasty, making it a good candidate for display in a hanging basket or on a ledge. Allow people to see the underside of the leaves—they’ll be amazed!
Black Pagoda flowers are not as colorful as other lipstick plant blooms, but they have a unique appearance that makes them attractive. The blooms are yellow and green, rather than brightly colored like other lipstick plant blooms. Although these flowers are not as impressive as their leaves, they still make for a beautiful addition to any home or office.
The Black Pagoda produces stems that are light green in color, flexible, and less wood-like as the stems grow older. Younger vines will trickle downward, and older vines will stand out straight. This gives the plant a unique effect: older vines will stand straight up while younger vines bend downward like a snake’s slithery coils.
Basic Care of Black Pagoda Plant
Aeschynanthus Black Pagoda is a fairly easy plant to grow indoors. But it still does have specific conditions and requirements that need to be met for it to really thrive, causing beginners to struggle taking care of it. Fortunately, we’ve prepared a list of what a Black Pagoda plant needs to grow:
The lipstick plant thrives under bright, indirect sunlight. It will bloom best if given plenty of light, so it may be best to place it in a south-facing window in your living room where it can receive year-round filtered sunlight.
Lipstick plants are less threatened by low light than they are by direct sunlight. If you can’t provide your lipstick plant with enough direct light, then you can add a grow light to your home or office. Lipstick plants require indirect, bright light to bloom.
If you’re planting it outside in the summer, keep it out of direct sunlight and water it often to prevent it from drying up.
Lipstick plants require well-drained soil but prefer it to be kept on the dry side. The best way to achieve this is by keeping the pH low and allowing the soil to dry out between waterings.
Lipstick plants tolerate their soil drying out a bit between waterings but are not tolerant of over-watering. If not promptly checked before watering, one may overwater their plant and cause leaf browning and leaf drop.
Lipstick plants thrive in warm, humid environments. If you have a bathroom or kitchen that is cool, moist the plant regularly and keep it close to an area that stays humid for it to create its humidity. You can also install a humidifier near your lipstick plant to keep the air around it moist.
Fertilizing your lipstick plants in spring through summer will help them bloom and get the brightest colors. Organic plant food works better than chemical ones, so you won’t burn the plants with chemical fertilizers.
If you have a small indoor garden or a small backyard, use a general-purpose liquid fertilizer for indoor plants. Otherwise, feed your plants with compost to ensure flowering.
4. Soil Potting
If you have trouble keeping your houseplants’ roots from becoming root-bound, try adding perlite or pumice to the potting soil. This will help you keep your plants healthy and prevent them from succumbing to root rot.
If you use potting soil, choose fast-drying varieties. Succulent potting soil is an ideal choice for growing lipstick plants because it contains little clay and is high in organic matter.
African violet potting soil also works well for growing lipstick plants; avoid using pots with drainage holes on the bottom or African violet pots, which tend to retain water and become too wet.
How to Propagate a Black Pagoda Plant?
The Lipstick plant is difficult to propagate, but if you are patient and give the roots time to develop, you may be able to achieve success.
Step 1: Disinfect before starting
Before you begin propagating, clean your scissors. Put them under hot water and scrub them well. This will keep you from transferring bugs or fungi during propagation.
If you have disinfectant, use it. Otherwise, use pure alcohol; both will kill potential pathogens.
Step 2: Plant cutting method
Lipstick cuttings are best taken when the plant is young with at least five leaves. After removing each cutting from its parent plant, cut multiple cuttings and remove the lowest leaves of each one.
Cuttings that have been propagated using this method are not always successful, but if you remove the lower leaves of the cuttings and water them frequently, they will root in time.
Step 3: Applying root-promoting hormone
To prepare a root zone on your cuttings, use rooting hormone powder. The root zone is the area where you will place an individual cutting. This will be done by dabbing the powder on the ‘open wound’, where you took the cuttings from your mother plant.
Make sure to dry the powder well! If you do not have any rooting hormone, no problem! Just make sure to stimulate root growth as much as possible so that your cutting develops more roots in the same amount of time.
Step 4: Caring for the cutting
Cuttings of the Lipstick plant can be potted into the soil of a pot and left to root. The cuttings will develop slowly, taking at least two months to become established in the pot.
Despite this, the cuttings have several advantages over plants grown from seeds: they rejuvenate older plants, allowing them to bloom again; they promote new growth in places where flowers have been killed by frost or disease, and they encourage new growth in regions of your home where no flowers are present.
Common Problems in Caring for Black Pagoda Plants
Keep your house plants happy and healthy. And don’t be discouraged if you get an infestation of small flying insects, because it’s usually not serious. Some of the problems that can occur during the care of black pagoda plants are as follows:
1. Lipstick plant leaves are dropping
Dropping leaves from your lipstick plant is most often caused by improper watering. If the soil is dry, water it; if it’s moist, allow it to dry out before watering again.
When watering, make sure that the soil is one inch down and not more than a few inches from the surface of the pot (this will ensure that your lipstick plant doesn’t drown). A moisture gauge can help you determine when it’s time to water your plant again.
2. Falling flowers or buds
Bud or flower drop is often caused by over-or under-watering. Too much water can kill the plant, whereas too little can cause it to wilt. Likewise, sudden temperature changes can also cause this problem.
Bud or flower drop might be caused by moving the plant to a new area or changing the temperature conditions (for ex, from our house to your office).
3. Lipstick plant leaves turning yellow
If you have given your lipstick plant ample water and light, but the leaves on its plant are turning yellow and it is not getting enough sunlight, try moving it closer to a sunny window or adding a grow light if needed. If that does not help, check the soil for signs of pests and remove any dead leaves from around the roots before watering again.
4. Lipstick plant is not flowering
To make your lipstick plant bloom, put it in the right spot. For best results, place it near a sunny window or add a grow light so that there’s more sunlight. Fertilizers will make plants flourish by providing nutrients. Give the plant a dose of liquid fertilizer. Try using a weak solution if the plant is young.
See a similar post: White Princess Plant Plant, Grow & Care Guide 2022
If you are interested in growing a plant species in your garden, then you might consider making a black pagoda plant a part of it. There are many reasons why it’s worth growing a black pagoda plant.
Not only is the black pagoda plant beautiful, but it’s a fairly easy plant to grow. It has many cute features, such as its size, flowers, leaves, color, and shape. On the other hand, it requires frequent pruning for its best growth and blooming. But it’s all worth it because of its beauty and charm.
The Black Pagoda plant can be found on Amazon and Etsy. Prices vary, so check both sites to get the best deal.
Click on the links below to check the prices.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Is Black Pagoda a Hoya?
Most people look at the Black Pagoda and are convinced that it is a variety of Hoya. This conclusion is reinforced by its common names, which suggest it might be a Hoya. The truth is that the Black Pagoda is more closely related to plants such as the lipstick vine (Aeschynanthus tabularis) than it is to Hoya.
It is easy to confuse the Black Pagoda flower with a Hoya. They look very similar, and both are tropical flowers used in houseplants. The big difference is that a Black Pagoda requires (a little) more care than a Hoya.
Is Black Pagoda lipstick plant toxic?
The Black Pagoda Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus pulcher) is a tropical plant with a cheery disposition. Despite its name, the plant isn’t dangerous to your pets; it’s just pretty. Containing dark red tubes that store nectar and small flowers, this striking houseplant captures attention wherever it resides.
If you want to put your lipstick plant on display but worry about having your pets running around, then there’s no reason to be stressed. Fortunately, the lipstick plant doesn’t show any toxic effects on cats, dogs, and horses.
How do you take care of a lipstick pagoda plant?
The lipstick plant prefers bright light, but it can take low to moderate light as well. Mine is atop a tall bookcase and receives indirect morning sunshine. Lipstick plants do not need a lot of water, just be sure that the soil stays evenly moist throughout their active growth period (spring through fall).
The stalks can grow to about 6 inches tall and will get bushy with time. It will expand to fit any available area. And as it grows, pinch off the new stalks regularly so that the older, taller stalks get all the nourishment. Otherwise, you will end up with a floppy mess of very slack branches and too many leaves for the plant to support them all!
Hey, I’m Lisa and I’ve been an avid gardener for over 30 years. I love writing, talking and living in the garden! Feel free to connect with me on my socials below