ThereRuellia brittoniana is a flowering plant belonging to the Acantacea family. It is commonly calledMexican petuniaordesert petuniarecalling its origins with its name: it is native to Mexico and Central America.
ThereMexican petuniais a vigorous perennial herbaceous plant that reaches a height of about 90 cm and expands very easily even in width. It needs a lot of space for development so it is not recommended to grow it in case of confined spaces.
Theredesert petuniait is appreciated for its large production of purple-blue and slightly scented flowers. The flowers are trumpet-shaped with a diameter of about 5 cm and have the particularity of opening in the morning and closing in late afternoon. Theredesert petuniamanages tobloom all year roundin mild climates, while flowering goes from late spring to the first cold in areas with harsher winters.
ThereMexican petuniait has evergreen, lanceolate leaves similar to those of the willow; they are dark green and shiny, about 30 cm long and 2 cm wide, another peculiarity of this ever green flowering plant are the purple colored stems.
How to grow Mexican petunia
Those who live in the north must not give up oncultivation of desert petunia. In northern Italy, theMexican petuniait can be grown in pots to be portrayed indoors with the first cold of autumn. It can also be grown in the open ground in the hottest locations or in any case where temperatures never drop below -5 degrees.
To the south, to preserve theflowering of thedesert petunia, it is advisable to choose areas in full sun. This evergreen flowering plant has no special soil requirements.
In pot it should be watered regularly from spring, while in the open ground it resists drought very well.
Who intendsgrow desert petuniain the open ground, to protect the plant from the cold it would do well to prepare a layer of mulch with a thickness of 15-20 cm given by straw, bark, dry leaves or compost.
Of the same family and with very similar characteristics, the Mexican petunias of the species Ruellia simplex with white and pink colors are popular.
Given the considerable development, at the time of cultivation we recommend the use of stakes to support the plant. The stake (s) should be placed between the various stalks of the Mexican petunia.