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Products > Cantua buxifolia 'Golden Inca'
 
Cantua buxifolia 'Golden Inca' - Yellow and White Flower of the Inca
   

 
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Polemoniaceae (Phlox)
Origin: Chile (South America)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Orange Red
Bloomtime: Spring
Height: 4-8 feet
Width: 6-8 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Cantua buxifolia 'Golden Inca' (Yellow and White Flower of the Inca) - An upright fast growing shrub that grows about 6 feet high with erect stems and arching branches holding small (1/2 to 1 inch long) semi-succulent gray-green leaves. In spring appear a profusion of 3 inch long flowers that have a long yellow tube with a flaring white petals held on thin pedicels so the flowers dangle beneath. Plant in full sun to light shade in a well-drained soil with regular to occasional irrigation. It is hardy to around 20 F but apparently dislikes hot inland conditions. In its natural habitat it is pollinated by hummingbirds so is a good plant to bring these birds into one's garden. It can be outrageous in bloom but is a somewhat untidy garden plant with a sprawling form and leafless stems, so can benefit from being espaliered or staking of several branches together and the pruning back of the longer stems but be sure to prune only just after flowering as the flowers are produced on the previous season's wood. Cantua buxifolia's natural habitat is in the high valleys of the Yungas, the forest along the eastern slope of the Andes Mountains where it can grow to be a small tree to 18 feet tall. It is the national flower of Peru and one of two national flowers of Bolivia (the other being Heliconia rostrata). The name for the genus is a Latinized version of the common name Qantu that was used by indigenous Incan people and the specific epithet refers to the resemblance of the leaves to those of a boxwood (Buxus). Besides the common name Flower of the Inca, this plant also is called Magic-flower, Magic-flower-of-the-Incas, Magictree, Sacred-flower-of-the-Incas, Flor del Inca and by the Incan names Qantu, Qantus or Qantuta. The plant is cited as being a key feature in Inca legends  The information provided on this page is based on research we have conducted about this plant in our nursery's library, from what we have found about it on reliable online sources, as well as from observations in our nursery of crops of this plant as well as of plants growing in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens. We will also incorporate comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from anyone who may have additional information, particularly if it includes cultural information that would aid others in growing  Cantua buxifolia 'Golden Inca'.