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Monday, June 29, 2020

How to Grow & Care Purple Velvet Plant (Gynura Aurantiaca)

When I first saw this plant - I had totally fallen in love this one. Locally known as "Pokok Gunting" supposedly an heir-loom plant which been passed down from generations, as I had found that this was actually belonged as "Kampung Plants" whereas the meaning derived as "Pokok Gunting" as you just cut and poke plant. Of course, after checking the web - the name is sort of commonly used among locals but known universally. 

Gynura Aurantiaca commonly known as Purple Velvet Plant, Purple Passion Plant, Royal Velvet Plant or Velvet Plant. There are different species of Gynura which were used as traditional medicinal plant but this particular one is purely ornamental. 

The foliage has this light furry hairs that gives that purple velvety sheen on the green leaves. Gynura Aurantiaca is a trailing, evergreen perennial that was originally discovered on the island of Java in Indonesia.

Care & Cultivation:


I find this one is not so fussy about the soil medium, it can actually do so well in all kinds of medium types - from dry to moist types. Ideally do give a nice balance potting mix of both fast draining together with rich peat based medium that this one is well maintained for good root growth.

Do keep more on the drier side - it performs better than a wet feet.

It does well on daily watering - twice a day during a hot sunny days. Over watering can cause them to face root rot and the plant appears limp. And so do check on what is ideal - not too soggy a soil medium.

This one do require bright indirect lighting to ensure a good coloration on the foliage. Too shady and they tend to appear more green than purple. Too hot and exposed to direct hot sun can cause the foliage can get burned and closed up.
It requires an ideal balance of both.


I must emphasize that this may require a bit more pruning as the vine can just grow as a singular piece and may just snap and break due to it's own weight or can uproot itself from the hanging pot and you may lose the plant on a hot bright day without realizing it.

And so, the best option is to constantly prune them and used the cuttings for spare plants as they can be finicky - I had lost this plant couple of times.


It had been said which I believe it is true to prune of the flower heads before the form seeds as the plant can quickly set to mature and die off. I had not experienced this as none of my plants had not set to flower. 

Also I believe it would be better to do so, as I often nip off the flower buds of my Coleus plant to keep it going longer and focus on it's growth on foliage and root development.

Then there are report stating the blooms emits a foul smell that may not be pleasant. It would be better to remove them before they set to bloom unless you love experimenting with those first blooms.

It is a slow growing plant and may not appear to be invasive looking anytime soon. Other than that, this is fairly an easy plant to care for. Once it had set itself good roots - there are nothing much to worry about.

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Tropical Garden, Batu Caves, Malaysia
My Malaysian Tropical Garden mainly focused on unique and colorful plants ranging from rare to common plants all around the tropical belt across the world. Ideal for inspiration for challenging areas in the garden space - indoor gardening, balcony gardening and small green spaces especially for ariods, bromeliads, begonias, edibles, cascading & vertical garden plants, succulents & cacti, orchids, together with both shade and sun loving plants.

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