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Annual Biennial

Nicandra physalodes

apple of Peru [2]

N. physalodes has many, branched, erect, dark coloured stems to 1.2m, with toothed, ovate green leaves to 10cm long, rather thin in texture, and solitary flowers borne on short stalks from the axils of the leaves. The flowers are pale blue-mauve with a white throat, 5-lobed, 2.5-4cm across, opening in the middle of the day. The calyces are tinged and veined with dark purple, expanding after flowering to encase the small brown fruits in ridged, papery globes

Other common names
apple of Sodom
Peruvian bluebell
see moreshoo-fly [2]
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Size
Ultimate height
1–1.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
1 year
Ultimate spread
0.5–1 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Purple Green
Summer Purple Blue Purple Green
Autumn Purple Blue Purple Green Brown Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Solanaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Nicandra is a monotypic genus in the potato family, Solanaceae

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Peru

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How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in fertile, moist but well-drained soil in full sun or light shade. Flowers are short-lived but the fruit is encased in ornamental lantern-like calyces

Propagation

Propagate by seed at 15°C (59°F) in early spring or in situ in mid-spring; self-seeds freely

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Coastal
  • Mediterranean climate plants
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

No pruning required; ideal for dried flower arranging

Pests

Generally trouble free

Diseases

Generally trouble free

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