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How To Grow Blue Spur Flower? How To Get Most Of It?

Are you a fan of majestic Blue Spur flowers but are struggling to get the same result at home?

Blue spur flowers grow well in bright light with some partial shade, a tropical temperature, and organically rich soil seldom fertilized. Do not forget to protect them from cold and occasionally prune them for bushier growth.

Discover the secrets to cultivating this enigmatic plant to maximize its inflorescence and health benefits.

What Does Blue Spur Flower Look Like?

Did you know Blue Spur is a highly valued medicinal plant widely grown as a perennial herb in South Asia, East Asia, and Europe?

The plant’s foliage and tuberous roots are rich in forskolin (coleonol) used to treat hypertension, congestive heart failure, painful urination, and convulsions.

Blue Spur, also known as Plectranthus barbatus or Coleus forskohlii, bears show flowers in the shape of stalks with six-eight blue-to-purple deep-flowers.

Blue Spur Flower
Although grown for its Ayurvedic benefits, most gardeners also prefer growing it for its majestic-looking flowers.

These stalks rise from green foliage from spring to fall when the temperature remains moderately warmer, usually in USDA zones 9-11.

Here is how you can identify Blue Spur and its flowers.

Scientific namePlectranthus barbatus
Common namesBlue spur, Coleus forskohlii, spurflowers, or Indian coleus
StructureTubular-shaped flowers
SizeSmall and inconspicuous, up to 2 cm long
ColorBlue, purple, or lavender
FragranceGenerally not known for its fragrance
ToxicityConsidered non-toxic to humans and pets
LifespanFlowers for several months
FruitsMay produce small, inconspicuous fruits
Blooming SeasonTypically blooms in late spring to early autumn

Although Blue Spur flowers are not known to exhibit medicinal values, they would make great ornamental addition to the plant.

How Do You Grow Blue Spur Flowers?

Although known for flowering every spring until fall, these plants are hard to bloom without a proper environment.

Here is what you need to know about growing healthy and vigorous Blue Spur flowers.

1. Light Requirements

Care to provide at least eight hours of indirect sunlight with some direct morning or late noon sun to ensure flowering.

Without ample lighting, the young flower buds will fail to transpire into a blossom due to a lack of photosynthesis, as indicated by the young blossom drop.

When growing the plant in colder regions, USDA 6 or below, care to move them indoors and keep them under LED grow light throughout spring, fall, and winter.

Similarly, place the grow lights a few inches above the plant and adjust the duration to 10-12 hours daily.

Choose an outdoor location that receives morning sun and offers shade during the day when planting them outdoors.

2. Temperature and Humidity

Blue Spur is a tropical flowering species that needs suitable warm temperatures and humid conditions to bloom.

A temperature typical to USDA 9 or above is ideal for Blue Spur flowering, typically between 60-75°F (15-24°C).

Keep them close to light sources such as south or west-facing windows, outdoor gardens, and patios.

However, move them indoors when the temperature drops below 50°F to avoid cold stress and over 85°F to avoid excess transpiration.

Similarly, the humidity level should remain 50-60% during the active growing season.

Make use of a room humidifier or humidifying tray, placing a tray of water nearby or misting the foliage occasionally to boost the humidity level.

3. Soil Type

Plant your Blue Spur in well-draining soil with a slightly acidic to neutral pH.

When (Re) planting, amend the soil with organic matter such as compost or bone meal to improve fertility and naturally reduce the pH level (6.0-7.0).

A loamy or sandy loam soil is suitable. If your soil is heavy and clay-like, improve drainage by incorporating organic matter, such as compost.

blue spur flowers soil
Blue Spur flowers will thrive when grown in loamy, organic soil.

Remember, Blue Spur does not require frequent fertilizing as the plant naturally retains nutrients from the rich soil.

If fertilizing, keep it once a season and use all-purpose fertilizer or slow-release osmocote.

Maintaining the overall structure of the soil provides essential nutrients for healthy plant growth and flowering.

4. Watering and Moisture

Although Blue Spur plants prefer moderately moist soil to boost flower production, overwatering them is a complete no-no.

Allow the Blue Spur soil to dry out about an inch between watering, usually 5-7 days for outdoor and 7-10 days for indoor plants.

Blue Spurs growing in correct moisture are more likely to bloom and maintain flower structure and appearance. Do follow these guidelines.

  • Pour water directly at the base of the Blue Spur plant.
  • Aim to keep Blue Spur foliage as dry as possible to prevent fungal diseases.
  • Increase the watering frequency to compensate for increased evaporation during hot and dry periods.
  • Mulch the soil if necessary to retain soil moisture, especially garden plants.

5. Pruning and Maintenance

Blue Spurs can grow well over 5 feet and spread across the field, choking native plants.

Timely pruning of overhanding leaves, decayed foliage, and spent flowers must redirect the plant’s energy toward inflorescence.

Here are some guidelines to follow:

  • Pinch back the tips of the Blue Spur stems to encourage further branching.
  • Pinching can be done throughout the growing season. Aim to remove the top 1-2 inches of the stem.
  • Deadhead spent flowers throughout summer and fall to redirect the plant’s energy towards new flower production.
  • Regularly inspect the plant for faded or wilted flowers and trim them off.
  • Snip the flower stalk just above a leaf node or junction to encourage new buds to form.
Additional Note:
Tall Blue Spur will require additional support, such as stakes or trellises, to remain upright and prevent it from sprawling.

6. Winter Care

Gardeners in colder climates should be wary of growing Blue Spur as this plant can fail to bloom altogether.

  • The Blue Spur grows excellent in containers, which can be kept outdoors during the summer and brought indoors during winter.
  • Move the plants to a warm and well-lit area indoors or under grow lights.
  • If bringing the plants indoors is impossible, cover them with frost blankets to prevent cold stress.

You should naturally reduce watering during dormancy and avoid pruning, fertilization, and excess humidity until spring.

Blue Spur Flower Benefits

Blue Spur plant is known around the world for its various medicinal benefits.

The plant’s roots are primarily used as Ayurveda medicine for various ailments. Meanwhile, leaves are known to be consumed as culinary herbs.

Moreover, herbal tea prepared from aged leaves contains rosmarinic acid and flavonoids that help with bloating and digestive issues.

However, little is known about Blue Spur flowers’ benefits besides their ornamental value.

Therefore, planting Blue Spur flowers is well suited for gardeners interested in admiring the beautiful flower stalks.

From Editorial Team

Final Thought!

Be careful of common garden pests and diseases like aphids, spider mites, snails and slugs, and powdery mildew.

These inhibitors can significantly reduce your Blue Spur’s ability to grow or flower.

Therefore, check for signs of pests and diseases and treat them immediately to witness a healthy plant!