Family: Acanthaceae

Aphelandra comprises around 170 species of shrubs from tropical America, grown mainly for their striking foliage. They have terminal spikes of densely packed flowers surrounded by brightly coloured bracts and large, opposite, often showy, leaves. Some of the species are very popular indoor plants.


A. squarrosa, zebra plant, is a native of South America. It grows upright to 1 m (3 ft), sometimes more. It has large, glossy, dark green leaves, heavily veined in white and pink, and flower spikes of bright golden yellow in spring.


Whether grown as a house plant or in a greenhouse, Aphelandra requires warm, humid conditions and a soil-based compost containing leaf mould. Provide full light but shade from strong sun. Give lots of water in the warmer months, but water less in the winter. It is best when grown in a smallish pot as it appears to prefer to be rather pot-bound. Propagate from half-green cuttings from the side shoots.


Grow outdoors only in zone 10 and above.

Antirrhinum      Apple