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Streptocarpus kentaniensis

   (Family: Gesneriaceae)
   
English: Kentani streptocarpus  EDIT
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Plant Type: EDIT  Shrub
Height: 0.1m
Spread: 0.2m
Rarity Status:
Common
   
Preferred rainfall: Summer
Preferred position:
Shade
Biome: Forest
 
Flowering time EDIT
          x x          
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Flower colours
 
White
Flower shape
 
  Flower info
  The flowering stems are about 10-15 cm long with the tips drooping while the flowers are still in bud. The flowering stems often branch to form a few flowers on each stem. The leaves, flowering stems and flowers are covered in short, white hairs. The individual flowers are small (2-2.5 cm wide by 2.5-3 cm long) but very pretty. The flower is bi-coloured with a long, mauve tube which opens into five, rounded, white petals, two at the top and three at the bottom. Looking down the throat of the tube one can see dark mauve lines and a light yellow line running along the floor.
 
 
Leaf shape EDIT
Leaf margin
Leaf type
Leaf arrangement
 
  Leaf info EDIT
  Evergreen
  The long, narrow leaves are arranged in a very neat rosette, with the new leaves growing from the centre. On the underside, the midrib is very thick and prominent, while the smaller lateral veins form an intricate web as they run to the edge.
 
 
Fruit type EDIT
 
  Seed info EDIT
  The seed capsules are very long (6-7 cm), twisted, unfolding and opening as it dries to release the very fine seeds when ripe.
 
 
Description EDIT
Compact plant with long, stiff, narrow leaves and small white flowers.
Growing EDIT
Pot in a well-drained medium and do not over-water as plants will wilt and rot.
Plant in a shady spot or keep indoors in a warm spot without direct sunlight.
When the plants are stressed by drought or cold during the winter, the tips of the leaves will sometimes turn brown and dry. The dead tips may look a bit untidy but do not harm the plant, they leaves will continue to grow from the base.

Streptocarpus kentaniensis is easy to multiply simply by dividing a group, carefully separating a few leaves or an individual leaf with its roots attached and repotting it. Streptocarpus can also be propagated from seed or leaf cuttings. Thousands of fine brown seeds are released a month or two after flowering. The seeds usually germinate quite easily and fast when sown on a fine potting mix that is kept moist and warm. The seedlings can be potted when they are large enough to handle. The leaf cuttings are made by cutting the leaf across the midrib, dipping the cut edge into rooting hormone and then placing it into a well-drained medium, like clean sand. New roots will form at the cut edge, followed by new leaves. The potting medium for growing strong and healthy Streptocarpus is very important.
Distribution EDIT
Limited to the area around Kentani and the Kei River mouth in the former Transkei. In the forests, Streptocarpus kentaniensis grows naturally on south-facing rock walls with its roots wedged into crevices or on rock ledges.
History EDIT
The species name kentaniensis refers to the village of Kentani in Eastern Cape, where it was first collected.
Uses EDIT
Makes a lovely small pot plant.
Ecology EDIT
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