How to Care Cut Back & for Your Alternanthera Plant

Dec - 30

How to Care Cut Back & for Your Alternanthera Plant

Alternanthera plants (Alternanthera spp.) Reward gardeners. Two types are widely available: one that’s generally called Joseph’s jacket is approximately 1 foot tall (Alternanthera ficoidea) and comes from cultivars with multi-colored leaves, while the other, sometimes called calico plant (Alternanthera dentata), can be 3 feet tall and generally includes purple leaves. These plants respond shearing or trimming, and just need some care.

Keeping Perennial Plants Bushy

Though calico plants and Joseph’s jacket differ in height, they spread to cover a place of approximately 18 to 23 inches. Both are tropical, frost-sensitive plants that grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 through 11. These plants can grow in the ground and keep them bushy by trimming where you reside if you do not encounter frost. Pinch growing tips at any opportunity on individual branches looking bushy. To rejuvenate older plants and stimulate overall new growth, prune plants back to within 3 or 4 inches of the ground, but do this once warm weather is expected, in early spring when you have cool winters or in late winter if you live where winters are mild and typically frost-free. By wiping them with rubbing 22, to dissuade spread of plant disease, disinfect the blades in your cutting tools between cuts.

Maintaining Annuals and Indoor Plants

You can develop Joseph’s jacket or calico plant as an annual pinching back if you encounter where you live stems any time during the plant’s life. The plants can indoors or thrive since houseplants year-round. To over-winter plants, select plants that are healthy and pot them up, keeping them in a bright, sunny indoor place. Destroy any pests until dripping with soap, diluted at a speed of 6 tablespoons per gallon of 29, by spraying the leaves. After a week or two, after plants have adjusted to conditions indoors, you can pinch back or trim stalks to keep plants tidy, but just reduce one or two stalks per plant per week over a few weeks, to minimize strain but stimulate some new growth. The plant begins to look To get a houseplant, trim back stalks.


Calico plant and joseph’s jacket are native to moist areas, therefore it’s important to keep their soil evenly moist, not allowing it to dry out at any moment. Outdoor-grown plants take advantage of mulching with 3 or 4 inches of organic material and prevents any drying. During dry spells, supply water, aiming for approximately 1 inch per week after watering the soil is moist to a depth of at least 3 or 4 inches, and check. For an plant, water the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, but make sure the kettle drains well after each watering by removing its saucer until all water has drained off.


If you develop Joseph’s coat or calico plants outside in the ground, feed them at the onset of spring with 2 pounds of a 12-6-6 slow-release fertilizer per 100 square feet of planted area, then nourish them two or three times during summer and early autumn, with a milder, 1/2 into 1 lb application of the fertilizer per 100 square feet. To get a plant grown indoors, follow exactly the exact same feeding schedule as plants, but use a water-soluble fertilizer labeled for houseplants and diluted at a speed of 1/4 teaspoon per gallon of water for directions.

Winter Care

Whether you develop Joseph’s coat or calico plant indoors or outside, it’s important to give a break to the plant during winter months, when growth slows. Withhold water and fertilizer plants allowing roots to keep on growing but promoting less growth. Let the top 2 or 3 inches of soil become dry to prevent fungal issues. These plants do not experience any issues, and are often easy and trouble-free to develop.

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