Slanting plates convince with their abundance of flowers and their ease of care. There are numerous new hybrid breeds in great colors. Unfortunately, the beautiful varieties are usually only available on the Internet. In most cases, only the rhizomes are auctioned. From time to time, however, some are also offered by nurseries. You have to get hold of them quickly because they usually sell out in a very short time. The care is really not complicated and is rewarded with exceptional flowers in large numbers. Read our text to find out what needs to be taken into account. Inform yourself!


  • Belong to the Gesneria family
  • Achimenes means – does not tolerate cold
  • About 25 species
  • Related to African violet, gloxinia and shamflower
  • Native to Mexico and Central America (with a few exceptions)
  • Some varieties, mostly hybrids, are offered as houseplants
  • These bloom in the summer, then lose their foliage and decay. The rhizomes survive in the soil, from which new plants sprout after the hibernation.
  • Perennial herbaceous plants
  • 20 to 50 cm high
  • Usually with tubers as outlasting organs
  • The hybrids have rhizomes, small, mostly elongated nodules
  • Often unbranched, upright to prostrate
  • Flowers on the leaf axils, usually solitary
  • Striking are the petals, which look tubular or plate-shaped and sit a little crooked (hence the plant name)
  • Flower colors – purple, blue, red, orange and white
  • Flowering time – mostly in the summer or depending on when the rhizomes are planted
  • The most common are shades of purple
  • The other colors are difficult to obtain
  • Capsules containing tiny seeds

The maintenance of the slate

In the case of the slanting plates, a distinction is made between the growing season and the resting period. Since the plants like it warm all year round, they flower depending on when the rhizomes are potted. As a rule, this is done in the spring and flowering then takes place in the summer. The flowering period is long, because although one flower only lasts a few days, new ones keep blooming.

A bright location is important, but without direct midday sun. The plant substrate also plays a role, it must be permeable but still be able to store water. Watering is done regularly, quite often, but only a little during the growing season. Fertilize from the 7th week after planting, throughout the summer. In winter the rhizome is dormant in the ground. During the rest period is not poured and fertilized. In the spring, the plants are repotted and the cycle starts all over again. You don’t have to cut. Propagation is best done by head cuttings. Diseases and pests are rare and mostly caused by care errors.

Slate varieties with particularly long shoots are ideal for hanging baskets.


The location of the slanting plates should be as bright as possible. Morning and evening sun are tolerated, but midday sun is harmful. Drafts are also not beneficial. Slanted plates like it warm. During the rest period, however, the temperatures can also be lower.

  • Bright, but without direct, strong sunlight
  • East or west windows are ideal, as are morning or evening sun
  • No direct midday sun, no drafts
  • Warm all year round, between 16 and 26°C
  • During the hibernation, however, the room can be cooler
  • 3 to 12°C are then completely sufficient.
  • Frost is deadly, however.
  • Light is also not absolutely necessary

plant substrate

It is important for the plant substrate that it is permeable, but can also store water. Many opinions differ on the exact composition, so you can only try it out.

  • Mixture of sharp sand and peat dust (1:1)
  • Some carbonate of lime (not too much) ensures that the acidity is not too high.
  • I confess that I use normal, but high-quality indoor plant soil for my slanting plates and have had good experiences with it.
  • Experts recommend gloxinia, which is slightly acidic.


It is best to replant every year. I’ve always done well with it. Some plant friends use a substrate for years, but then have to fertilize more. I take the rhizomes out of the old soil in early spring and put them in new ones. It’s not a lot of work and is a good start for the crops.

  • After wintering in February or March, carefully remove the rhizomes from the ground.
  • To do this, it is best to simply pour the entire earth onto a flat surface, for example newspaper, and carefully search through the clods of earth
  • The rhizomes are small tubers, usually of different sizes.
  • The rhizomes must not break, which happens fairly quickly
  • Be sure to use fresh soil for potting.
  • You put several rhizomes (8 to 10) in a planter, since each nodule only drives one stem.
  • Be sure to lay the rhizomes horizontally in the ground!
  • They are covered with soil about 2 to 5 cm.
  • Moisten the substrate slightly.
  • More and more water is gradually poured until a normal watering rhythm is reached.
  • Fertilization begins after 6 weeks.
Tip: It is often reported that the rhizomes can be divided for propagation, i.e. divide immediately when planting. I haven’t had good experiences with it. The planters, in which there are only perfect, undivided rhizomes, always thrive and flower much better. The assumption is that many of those who are divided simply do not expel. However, I have never looked.

watering and fertilizing

Watering is best done with room-warm and lime-free water. It is important not to water the leaves, even if the plants are to be sprayed daily.

  • Ensure high humidity during bud formation, preferably spray daily.
  • Water evenly during the growing season as soon as the first shoots appear
  • Always keep the soil slightly moist without letting it dry out
  • Not too damp and, above all, not standing wet, so always clean coasters or cachepots nicely
  • Water more often, but only a little.
  • When flowering is over and the leaves begin to turn yellow, water less
  • Keep reducing the watering.
  • Almost stop watering at the end of the season
  • When the leaves and stems have completely dried up, stop watering completely
  • Do not water the slanted plate at all until spring!
  • Fertilize every 14 days during the growth period with normal flowering plant fertilizer, preferably liquid. It is simply added to the irrigation water.
  • Do not start fertilizing until 6 weeks after planting, commercially available soil is pre-fertilized.

To cut

Slanted plates do not need to be cut. After flowering, the plants move in. The dried stems can be cut off. I’ll wait until I can just pull them out of the ground. But this must be done very carefully, otherwise a rhizome will still be attached to it. So always check first whether the stem can really be pulled easily. If you resist, wait a little longer.

Tip: It is recommended to remove faded flowers so that the energy can be put into new ones again and again. The flowers are easy to peel off.


Hibernation is simple. The planter can be placed anywhere, even without light, but at temperatures that are not too low. It is neither poured nor fertilized. The rhizomes rest and gather new strength for budding and growth.

  • As soon as the leaves are completely dry, the dormant period begins
  • Do not cut off the stems, only when they are completely dry you can easily pull them out of the ground
  • Don’t water and don’t fertilize.
  • Temperatures around 12°C are best


Usually the rhizomes are used for propagation. In good years, there are significantly more rhizomes in the pot in February or March than were planted. Whereas in bad years it is significantly less. Then it is good if you have propagated cuttings in summer.

  • Cut off 6 to 10 cm long shoot tips in early summer.
  • Put them in the appropriate soil.
  • Place the container in a bright place, but never in the sun!
  • Always keep the substrate evenly and slightly moist.
  • The cuttings root quite quickly.

diseases and pests

Diseases and pests are rather rare and usually result from care errors. With a suitable location and good substrate, not much needs to be done. When pouring you should have a certain instinct, otherwise there is hardly anything to consider.

  • Yellow spots on the leaves that later turn brown – too much sun or water that is too cold
  • Yellow-green rings on leaves – ring spot virus – destroy plants
  • Mouse-grey mold on flowers and stems – gray mold – plants are too dense or the humidity is too high
  • Remove diseased parts and improve culture conditions
  • Aphids – if the location is too dry

Frequently Asked Questions

What causes leaf spots?
This can have various causes, see also diseases. They are often triggered by drafts, cold feet or cold water.

Which varieties are particularly beautiful to look at?
That is of course a matter of taste. There are many different flower colors.

  • ‘Yellow Beauty’ – yellow flowers with orange stamens, 40 to 50 cm tall
  • Achimenes admirabilis – orange-red flowers, interesting species with oblong leaves
  • ‘Snow Princess’ – white flowers with a small purple dot in the centre
  • ‘Primadonna’ – pink flowers
  • ‘Sterntaler’ – light yellow flowers
  • ‘Rainbow’ – lilac flowers
  • ‘Purple King’ – purple flowers
  • ‘Himalayan Sunrice’ Light yellow flowers, dark reddish foliage
  • ‘Kim Blue’ – blue flowers
  • ‘Sugarland’ – pink flowers with yellow interiors
  • ‘Candy Shop’ – pink flowers
  • ‘Ambroise Verschaffelt’? – white flowers with purple veining
  • ‘Rozi Rosa’ – pink flowers

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