How to Grow Kohleria - Planting & Caring

By Sharon & Team   /   Grassy Category   /   2023

Kohleria, also known as African tulip, is a genus of flowering plants in the family Gesneriaceae. The genus is named after the German botanist, Johann Heinrich Kohler. Kohleria are native to tropical America, from Mexico to Bolivia. They are grown as ornamental plants for their brightly colored flowers.

How to Grow Kohleria - Planting & Caring

Growing Easiness

Is it easy to grow Kohleria plant? Sometimes, people get discouraged because they cannot seem to keep their plants alive. If you are one of those people, do not despair – the Kohleria plant is perfect for you. This plant is very easy to take care of, and it is also very beautiful. The Kohleria plant is native to Costa Rica, and it can grow up to three feet tall. The leaves of the Kohleria plant are very large, and they are a beautiful green color. The flowers of the Kohleria plant are very colorful, and they look like miniature roses. The Kohleria plant is very easy to care for, and it does not require a lot of water.

Plant Size

How big can it be? The Kohleria plant can grow to be 20-60 cm in height. This makes it a great plant for adding height and dimension to your garden.

Growth Rate

How fast is the growth? Because it's a tropical plant, it needs warm weather to grow well. It grows quite slowly throughout the year, so you'll need to be patient if you want to grow one yourself. The flowers are beautiful, though, and well worth the wait!

Kohleria Basic Knowledge

Plant Form Grassy
Family Gesneriaceae
Origin Colombia

Lifespan, Perennial or Annuals

How long is the lifespan? When a Kohleria plant reaches 2-3 years old, it starts to lose its decorative appeal. To rejuvenate the plant, it is necessary to replant it every 2-3 years.

Ideal Temperature

What is the ideal temperature? The plant should be in the summer about 73,4-75,2 °F and in the winter no less than 59 °F. The plant is thermophilic and can die at low temperature, so it should be protected from drafts.


What about the humidity? Common methods to increase humidity are to spray the plant or to place the pot on a pebble tray. Another method is to keep the plant away from sources of dry air, such as radiators.

Light Requirement

What amount of light this plant needed? The Kohleria plant does best with scattered light, making it ideal for an east or west-facing window. However, it should be shaded from the direct midday sun, as too much light will cause the leaves to turn yellow and twist. Without enough light, the plant will not flower.

Soil Composition

What is good soil for Kohleria? If you want to use your own soil, the best mix is two parts ground sheet, one part coarse sand or perlite, one part peat, and one part humus. You can also add charcoal to this mix. Make sure to use drainage with this plant.

Watering Time

How much I must water Kohleria? The plant should be watered regularly during flowering, about every 3-4 days. The top layer of the soil should be slightly dry between watering. Use only soft warm water. With the onset of autumn, watering should be reduced, and in winter, watering should be done only once a week. Water should not, if possible, get on the leaves and especially on the flowers.

Fertilizing and Nutritient

About fertilizer. Eventually, you will need to fertilize your kohleria plant to keep it looking its best. Fertilize monthly from April to September using a liquid fertilizer diluted two-fold. You can use a fertilizer made specifically for orchids.


How to reproduce Kohleria? The reason why the Kohleria is such a popular plant is because it is very easy to take care of and it can multiply itself in different ways. The most common way to multiply colonies is by dividing the rhizomes during a spring transplant. You can also divide the rhizome in autumn. Another way to multiply Kohleria is by planting the seeds. The seeds of cola are planted in January-February in a mixture of leafy soil and sand and are not sprinkled with earth. Cover the container with glass and germinate the seeds at a temperature of 71,6-75,2 ° F. The glass is removed every day for airing. Shoots usually appear on the 10th-12th day. After about 2-3 weeks they are dived. The plant is also spread by stems. At the same time, the flowers and the lower leaves are removed from the cuttings. To get a large plant, it is better to drop a pot into the 10-cm pot filled with a mixture of peat and sand, just 3 cuttings. Cuttings can (but not necessarily) be treated with hormones. Place cuttings in the conditions of scattered light. Rooting lasts 4-6 weeks, after which the plant can be transplanted to a permanent place.


Why Kohleria won't bloom? Unless the climate is too cold, the Kohleria plant can bloom all year long. The plant produces tubular flowers in shades of red, pink, and orange. The flowers have darker spots on the inside and are about two inches long.

Transfer or Repotting

How much I must water Kohleria? The plant should be transplanted once in 2-3 years in the spring. This will not necessarily increase the size of the pot, but it is still good to do. The pot should be low and wide. Too deep pots are not suitable for coloring. Be careful not to damage the fragile roots of the cola.

Caring The Kohleria

How to care the plant? The reason you need to cut the needles is because they will eventually die off and fall off on their own. By cutting them, you help the plant to focus its energy on new growth. Dry leaves and flowers should be removed in a timely manner to prevent the plant from becoming too stressed. The plant does not tolerate drafts, so be sure to keep it in a warm, sheltered spot.

Pests & Challenges

What is the challenge when caring Kohleria plant? The main thing is to understand how to properly water it. The plant does not tolerate over-drying and, conversely, loves moisture. It is necessary to water it as the topsoil dries. It is best to use soft, warm water for watering. The plant is very fond of high humidity, so it is often necessary to spray the leaves with warm water. The plant is very light-loving, so it is best to put it on the southern windowsill. The soil for the plant should be loose, breathable and nutritious. It is best to use a mixture of peat and sand. The plant is very fond of various minerals, so it is necessary to periodically add them to the soil. It is best to use special fertilizers for kohleria. The plant is very susceptible to various diseases and pests. The most common are mealybug, thrips, aphids and spider mites.

Toxic & Poisonous Type

Are Kohleria poisonous? known as the African mask plant Kohleria plant is known as the African mask plant. It is a popular houseplant that is toxic to humans and animals if ingested. The plant contains saponins, which are toxic to the liver and kidneys. Symptoms of ingestion include vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. If you suspect your pet has ingested this plant, please contact your veterinarian immediately.