Firecracker Flower

Botanical Name: Crossandra infundibuliformis

Firecracker flower makes a stunning house plant that blooms dependably from spring through fall.

Its deeply veined, glossy leaves grow in opposite pairs, growing up to 5 in (13 cm) long.

Orange flowers are most common, but other colors include red, yellow and pink. The flowers are held upright from green tubular bracts. Even young plants are eager to bloom, sending up clusters of flowers most of the year.

Group Plants

Firecracker Flowers make a beautiful addition to a group of other tropical plants. Bringing them together as a group helps to raise the humidity around them.

In its native tropical habitat, this firecracker plant flourishes in the year-round warm temperatures and high humidity. Dropped leaves are sometimes a symptom of being exposed to cold air. Keep this flowering plant away from windows, doors or A/C vents, where it may be exposed to blasts of cold air. If the leaf tips turn brown, raise the humidity around it.

Repot in spring. Keep this flowering plant in a small pot because it blooms best when its roots are crowded. Use a pot with a drainage hole to prevent soggy soil.

Watch for spider mites that like dry conditions. Raising the humidity around the plant discourages these pests from invading.

Firecracker Flower Care Tips

Photo (below) credit: Oeropium

firecracker flower, yellow crossandra, crossandra infundibuliformis

Origin: Southern India and Sri Lanka

Height: Up to 2 ft (60 cm)

Light: Bright light. Some direct morning sun is fine.

Water: Water thoroughly, allowing the top 1 in (2.5 cm) of soil to dry out between waterings. Don't allow the soil to get soggy because it will quickly kill the plant.

Humidity: Moderate to high humidity.

Temperature: Average room temperatures 60-75°F/16-24°C year-round.

Soil: Any good potting mix.

Fertilizer: Feed every 2 weeks in spring and summer with a 20-20-10 liquid fertilizer diluted by half.

Propagation: Take 3 in (7.5 cm) stem tip cuttings in spring.

Green Thumb Tip

Plants that don't bloom aren't getting enough light.

Move the plant to a brighter location where it will get filtered sunlight.

Buying Tip

Flower colors are available in orange, yellow, pink and red. 'Mona Wallhead' has salmon pink flowers... 'Lutea' has golden yellow flowers.

firecracker flower, orange crossandra, crossandra infundibuliformis

Did you know...

Crossandra infundibuliformis is in the Acanthaceae family.

This attractive family boasts more than 2,000 species. Many are popular house plants, including Zebra Plant, Polka Dot Plant and Persian Shield. What many of them have in common is a brightly colored flower spike. Others have showy foliage. Some have both.