The Encyclopedia of House Plants

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Family: Acantaceae.

Hemigraphis alternata T. Anders. (Hemigraphis colorata Hall.) Common name(s): Red flame ivy
Hemigraphis Genus of 90 species of low-growing, slender-stemmed annuals, perennials, and subshrubs from woodland margins in tropical Asia. A climbing plant. Red Ivy has coloured leaves - silvery in the shade, metallic purple if grown in sunshine. Hemigraphis is not an easy plant to grow. It needs winter warmth, moist air, and pruning when stems become straggly. Use Hemigraphis in hanging basket or grow in terrarium.
Growing conditions Watering and misting Propagation
Average or above average warmth in summer. Keep fairy cool in winter - minimum temperature 60 F or 18 C. Bright light - avoid direct sunshine. Grow in soilless or soil-based potting mix. Water freely from spring to autumn - sparingly in Winter. Use tepid water. Mist leaves frequently, especially in hot weather. Take stem cuttings in spring. Use a rooting hormone and provide bottom head.
Hemigraphis alternata T. Anders. (H. colorata Hall.)
Red flame ivy

Slightly hairy, evergreen perennial with prostrate stems thet root freely. The heart-shape to ovate, scalloped leaves 3-4in long (9cm), are silver-gray above and purple beneath.

Hemigraphis repanda (L.) Hallier
Creeping evergreen perennial with slender, maroon or red stems that root freely. The narrowly lance-shaped, toothed leaves, up to 2in (5cm) long, are red-flashed grayish green, shading to purple above, and darker purple beneath.

User-submitted additions and corrections:

16th Jan 2005
Reported to be toxic
17th Jan 2005
The Acantaceae family is non-toxic. I do not know, what will happen if you will eat about 4 lb of hemigraphis, but I'm sure, that you will have the same problems, if you will eat 4 lb of "non-toxic" parsley or radish:-)
Seminole, FL
2nd Nov 2007
Forgot that I was highly allergic to poison ivy as a child. When I handled this plant my hands are completely engulfed in blisters and itching rash. Very toxic to me. Please be aware of this allergic reaction when handling the Red Flame Ivy.
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