Common name: Mexican Shrimp Plant, Shrimp Plant, Shrimp Flower, False Hop.
Botanical name: Justicia Brandegeana, Beloperone guttata, Calliaspidia guttata, Drejerella guttata
Life cycle habit: Perennials.
Plant type: Shrub
Pests and Diseases: Yellowing of leaves(Over watering), Leaves may drop(Due to too much or water or dry),fungal leaf spot or leaf rust, White flies and spider mites.
Justicia Brandegeana/ Mexican Shrimp Plant is a evergreen perennial shrub which can last for several years. Also known as Shrimp flower plant or shrimp plant because of its drooping , shrimp like flower spikes( they are actually flower bracts).
It does have flowers white in color with purple spots with two thin petals and yellow stamens which are quiet long. These flowers last for only few days but the flower heads or bracts which are yellow or brick red in color lasts for a very long time and makes the plant to appear always in bloom year round.
On ground Shrimp plant can reach to 3’-4’ tall and in pots to about 18” -20”. It requires rich well drained soil and quiet a good warm sun light. If planted in shade you will find reduced blooms and plants become leggy.
To keep the shrimp plant low and bushy you need to prune them at least once a year.Also, remove dead flowers and stems to keep the plant compact. Asks for pleanty of water during flowering and also good drainage is absolutely necessary.
Fertilize them once when it is pruned and in the growing period and while flowering. Feed them when you see pale leaves and if you witness pale flower heads or drop of flower heads and you should understand that the plant requires a shift to a brighter location. If possible protect from afternoon sun.
Propagation is through stem cutting and can be done in any time of the year and the cuttings should be minimum 5” long.
Happy gardening with Mexican shrimp plant……………………………..