How to Grow Thespesia - Planting & Caring

By Sharon & Team   /   Shrubs Category   /   2023

Thespesia, also known as Portia Tree, is a genus of flowering plants in the family Malvaceae. It contains about 20 species, all of which are native to the Old World. Thespesia is a small to medium-sized tree, typically growing to 10–20 m tall. The leaves are alternate, simple, and entire, with a length of 5–15 cm. The flowers are borne in clusters of 3–5 and have a diameter of 2–3 cm. The fruit is a capsule, containing numerous seeds.

How to Grow Thespesia - Planting & Caring

Growing Easiness

Is it easy to grow Thespesia plant? Sometimes, Thespesia are easy to grow, and sometimes they are average. They are not the easiest plant to grow, but they are not the hardest either. They require average care, and if you give them what they need, they will reward you with beautiful flowers.

Plant Size

How big can it be? Sometimes, the Thespesia plant can grow up to 1.5 meters. However, usually, the plant only grows up to 1-2 meters. The Thespesia plant has a woody stem and its leaves are simple and opposite. The flowers of the Thespesia plant are big and showy and its fruits are capsules.

Growth Rate

How fast is the growth? Because Thespesia is a fast-growing and relatively short-lived species, it is often considered a pioneer species in its native range. It is often one of the first species to invade disturbed areas, such as areas that have been burned by wildfires.

Thespesia Basic Knowledge

Plant Form Shrub
Family Malvaceae
Origin Islands of the Pacific (Hawaii)

Lifespan, Perennial or Annuals

How long is the lifespan? When Thespesia plants are in ideal conditions, they can live for many years. If Thespesia plants are not in ideal conditions, they may only live for a few years. Thespesia plants need full sun, well-drained soil, and regular watering to thrive. If any of these conditions are not met, Thespesia plants will not live as long.

Ideal Temperature

What is the ideal temperature? The Thespesia plant is a tropical to subtropical flowering plant that generally prefers warm weather. In the summer, the optimal temperature range for the Thespesia plant is 68-78.8 degrees Fahrenheit. In the winter, the plant prefers a temperature range of 64.4-78.8 degrees Fahrenheit. The minimum temperature that can be maintained for a short time is +35.6 degrees Fahrenheit.

Humidity

What about the humidity? Sometimes, indoor Thespesia plants can experience a bit of yellowing on their leaves. This is because the air is too dry for the plant. To prevent this, make sure to mist your plant daily with soft water. The plant also prefers high humidity, so you may need to place it near a humidifier.

Light Requirement

What amount of light this plant needed? The spesia plants require bright light, with several hours of direct sun each day. The plant will do best if the southern window is slightly shaded. Conditions of bright diffused light are also suitable.

Soil Composition

What is good soil for Thespesia? Unless you live in an area with naturally sandy, well-drained soil, you'll need to amend your planting site. You can purchase premixed sandy soil at a garden center, or make your own by mixing 1 part garden soil, 1 part coarse sand or perlite, and 1 part moist peat or humus (leaf mold). Add a little lime to raise the pH if necessary. The ideal pH range for Thespesia is 6.0 to 7.4. Be sure to use a planting pot with a drainage hole.

Watering Time

How much I must water Thespesia? Unless the plant is in a very warm climate, Thespesia should be watered every 3-4 days during the summer. It's best to use warm water. In the winter, limit watering, but don't allow the plant to completely dry out.

Fertilizing and Nutritient

About fertilizer. Because Thespesia is a heavy feeder, fertilizer should be applied every three to four weeks during the growing season, from April to October. A diluted fertilizer is best, applied in the early morning. An organic fertilizer is preferable.

Reproduction

How to reproduce Thespesia? The spesia plants can be reproduced via stem cuttings or seed propagation. To reproduce via stem cuttings, in springtime take a semi-matured stem cutting that is about 30 cm long. Leave 3-4 top sheets on the cutting, and remove the rest. The cut should then be treated with hormones before being planted in moist sand or a mixture of peat or perlite. It is best to cover the stalk with a plastic bag and put it in an area where it won't be in direct sunlight. The temperature should be at least 71.6-75.2 degrees Fahrenheit. Rooting usually takes about a month. To reproduce via seed propagation, the seeds should be gently treated with sandpaper or nail clippers to open the sheath (but not damage the inside of the seeds). The seeds can then be planted in a mixture of peat and perlite, at a depth equal to two seed diameters. Germination usually takes 2-4 weeks.

Bloom

Why Thespesia won't bloom? Although Thespesia plants have beautiful and unique flowers, they are not long lasting. The flowers are yellow, bell-shaped, and similar to hibiscus flowers. They only last for 1-2 days before turning dark maroon and falling off. However, Thespesia plants can bloom again within a year.

Transfer or Repotting

How much I must water Thespesia? The reason for transferring Thespesia is because it is a very fast growing plant and gets too big for it's pot very quickly. Thespesia is generally only transferred once it has outgrown it's pot. You will know it is time to transfer when you see that the roots are starting to come out of the bottom of the pot. The best time to transfer is in the spring.

Caring The Thespesia

How to care the plant? The spesia is a genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae. It contains about 60 species of evergreen trees, shrubs, and woody vines, native to the Old World tropics. Thespesia plants are fast-growing and can reach a height of 15-20 feet in just a few years. They are often used as shade trees or privacy screens. Thespesia trees are relatively drought-tolerant and can tolerate poor soil conditions. However, they do require regular pruning and pricking to keep them in shape and to prevent them from becoming too large. The flowers and fruits of Thespesia are edible and easy to eat.

Pests & Challenges

What is the challenge when caring Thespesia plant? Although it is unpretentious in care, it often suffers from various diseases. The most common are powdery mildew, fungal diseases, and root rot. The plant is also affected by pests such as mealybugs, spider mites, thrips, whiteflies, scale insects, and aphids. With a lack of nutrients or light, the leaves turn pale and the shoots stretch.

Toxic & Poisonous Type

Are Thespesia poisonous? Common names for Thespesia include Pacific rosewood, Indian rosewood, and portia tree. Thespesia is a genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae. It contains at least 19 species, all native to the tropical Old World. Thespesia are shrubs or trees, growing to 5–20 m tall. The leaves are alternate, simple, 5–20 cm long and 3–8 cm broad. The flowers are bisexual, with 5–9 petals. The fruit is a schizocarp, dividing into 5–9 mericarps at maturity, each mericarp is a one-seeded, dry, nut-like fruits. Thespesia is not poisonous. Common names for Thespesia include Pacific rosewood, Indian rosewood, and portia tree. Thespesia is a genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae. It contains at least 19 species, all native to the tropical Old World. Thespesia are shrubs or trees, growing to 5–20 m tall. The leaves are alternate, simple, 5–20 cm long and 3–8 cm broad. The flowers are bisexual, with 5–9 petals. The fruit is a schizocarp, dividing into 5–9 mericarps at maturity, each mericarp is a one-seeded, dry, nut-like fruits.