The Purple Passion (Gynura aurantiaca) is a lovely houseplants that comes with a twist. This plant, loved for its velvety purple leaves, serves you more than just aesthetics; it takes you on a propagation journey typical of monocarpic plants – those that bloom once in their lifetime and then start to wither away.
Knowing its blooming phase will lead to the plant’s decay may sound a bit disappointing, but that shouldn’t overshadow your interest. Before reaching its adult stage, the Purple Passion will offer you years of vibrant growth, and, of course, the chance to propagate new cuttings. This way, you’ll be able to cultivate a new generation, continuing the plant’s legacy in your home.
Now, let’s see what it takes to care for this purple houseplant!
Table of Contents
1. General Information & Quick Care Guide
|Purple Passion Plant, Velvet Plant
|Non-toxic to humans and pets
|1-2 ft high, with vines up to 5 ft long
|Keep soil moist but not soggy; reduce in winter
|Bright, indirect light or morning sun
|Humidity & Temperature Requirement:
|Prefer average indoor temperatures of 60–70°F and high humidity
2. Purple Passion Plant Care & Growing Requirements
The key to watering the Purple Passion plant is balance. Overwatering can lead to root rot, while underwatering can cause the plant to wilt and lose its vibrant color. Water the plant when the top of the soil feels dry to the touch.
While watering, try not to get its fuzzy leaves wet, as this can cause issues like rot or attract pests. If that’s unavoidable, you should try bottom watering your Gynura plant. However, you’ll still have to water it from the top every few months to flush out salt and mineral buildup.
Purple Passion thrives in bright, indirect light. A spot near a north-facing window or where it can receive gentle morning sunlight is ideal.
Harsh direct sunlight should be avoid, especially during the hot afternoon hours, as it can scorch the fuzzy leaves.
A well-draining soil mix is best for your Purple Passion Plant. A mix that contains organic material like peat, perlite, or vermiculite will provide the necessary drainage and aeration, while retaining a nice level of moisture without becoming waterlogged.
Purple Passion thrives in consistent indoor temperature ranging between 60–70°F. Since fluctuating temperatures can stress this plant, you should avoid placing it near drafts or heat sources.
The plant prefers high humidity but avoid misting the leaves directly. Use a pebble tray or humidifier to increase the moisture around it.
You can fertilize your Purple Passion monthly during spring and summer. Use a balanced, all-purpose liquid fertilizer, diluted to half strength. This will provide the necessary nutrients for growth without overwhelming the plant.
3. Purple Passion Plant Maintenance and Propagation
Purple Passion can thrive even when slightly root-bound, which means it doesn’t require frequent repotting. Even so, if you notice signs of stunted growth or the soil drying out very quickly, it might be time to consider repotting.
Spring or early summer is the ideal time for repotting, as the plant is in its active growth phase. After repotting, give your plant some time to adjust to its new home before resuming its regular watering and fertilization schedule.
Pruning will help you maintain the plant’s bushy appearance. Pinching back the growing tips promotes fuller growth and prevents the plant from becoming leggy.
Flowering means that your Purple Passion has reached maturity and its small, orange blooms mark the beginning of the end of its lifecycle. While some prefer to extend the lifespan of their Purple Passion plants by removing the flowers before blooming, others start collecting cuttings to propagate the next generation.
When the time comes, you’ll have to decide what’s next for your Purple Passion.
One of the most fulfilling parts of caring for your Purple Passion is its ease of propagation, allowing you to continue its legacy.
Propagation is best done through stem cuttings. Cut a healthy stem, preferably a few inches long with several leaves, and remove the lower leaves. You can put the cutting in water or directly plant it in a well-draining soil mix, ensuring that at least one node (the part where the leaves meet the stem) is under water or buried in the soil.
Replace the water every few days or keep the soil moist and place the cutting in a spot with bright, indirect light. Within a few weeks, you should be able to see the new roots.
4. Common issues
- Leaves turning yellow: Overwatering or too much fertilizer can cause yellowing leaves. Adjust your watering schedule and fertilizer application.
- Leaves turning brown: This is often a sign of underwatering or too much direct sunlight. Make sure your plant has the right amount of moisture and is protected from harsh sun.
- Leggy growth: Insufficient light usually causes spindly growth. Simply move your plant to a brighter location.
- Fading color: Lack of light is usually the cause of less vibrant purple leaves. Place your plant in a spot with bright, indirect light.
5. Purple Passion Plant Diseases & Pests
Keep an eye out for aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies. Regular checks and quick treatment, including neem oil spray, can prevent infestations. Overwatering can lead to root rot, so make sure to check if the top of the soil feels dry to the touch before watering your plant.
Purple Passion is a lovely addition to any indoor plant collection, despite its monocarpic nature. Its care routine is straightforward, making it easy to care for. By providing the right balance of light, water, and humidity, you can enjoy the lush, vibrant beauty of the Gynura aurantiaca in your home.
And if you’re looking for more colorful houseplants, make sure to give our list of houseplants with green and purple leaves a read. After all, your Purple Passion might feel lonely by itself, right?