Alphabetical Plant Listing

Acalypha wilkesiana (Jacob's Coat)

Jacob's Coat, Copperleaf, Beefsteak Plant, Acalypha tricolor


Prized for its brilliant colors and leaf patterns, Acalypha wilkesiana (Jacob's Coat) is a fast-growing tropical evergreen shrub noted for its beautiful foliage of glossy, serrated, mostly heart-shaped leaves, 5-8 in. long (12-20 cm), in shades of bronze, copper, red, gold, and even pink. Free-flowering, insignificant greenish flowers, sometimes tinged with reddish-pink are produced sporadically throughout the year. Wonderfully exotic, Acalypha wilkesiana is a robust, bushy shrub that adds a long-lasting splash of color in the landscape. Thriving in hot, humid summer climates, it makes a great accent, hedge or specimen in tropical or subtropical gardens. Vigorous and easy to grow, it can be grown in containers, as a houseplant or seasonal annual elsewhere. Potted Jacob's Coat retains its color indoors in a bright, humid environment.

  • Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society.
  • Grows up to 2-4 ft. tall and wide (60-140 cm). May grow up to 6-10 ft. tall and wide (180-300 cm) in a warm, sheltered spot.
  • Performs best in full sun to part shade, in fertile, humus-rich, moist, well-drained soils. If grown indoors, plant in a loam-less potting compost in full or filtered light.
  • Water freely and apply a balanced liquid fertilizer monthly during the growing season. Let the soil dry slightly between waterings. Water sparingly in winter, keeping barely moist.
  • No regular pruning needed. Pinch to control size and shape and to promote bushiness.
  • Generally disease free. Keep an eye our for glasshouse whitefly, glasshouse red spider mite, mealybugs and scale insects.
  • Propagate by softwood cuttings in early spring or semi-hardwood cuttings in late summer. Bottom heat will be required.
  • Native to Pacific Islands.

 

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Requirements

Hardiness 10 – 11
Heat Zones 1 – 11
Climate Zones 24, H2
Plant Type Shrubs
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spacing 48" (120cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Plant of Merit, Showy, Evergreen
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers

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Forrest and Kim Starr (Flickr),  Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 10 – 11
Heat Zones 1 – 11
Climate Zones 24, H2
Plant Type Shrubs
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spacing 48" (120cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Plant of Merit, Showy, Evergreen
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers

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