Tibouchina originally comes from Brazil, where it is simply called the princess flower because of its majestic flowers. Its large flowers shine in nuanced shades of blue and purple. Under certain circumstances, the Tibouchina with the splendor of flowers is a long time coming, as is the case with princesses. But it should work by the end of August at the latest, but the flowers are often retained over the winter.


Tibouchina can be grown from seeds, the time in spring is particularly suitable for this. It should be noted that the seeds only germinate in light. Therefore, the small seeds should hardly be covered with soil and should be in a light spot. Kokohum or a mixture of potting soil and perlite has proven to be a good substrate for cultivation. A covered germination vessel ensures constant temperature and humidity. The light germs need at least 22 degrees and a damp, but not wet, soil. Under these conditions, the germination time is between 3 and 6 weeks.


The Tibouchina impresses with its appearance in several ways. Its green leaves are oval in shape and are slightly hairy on both sides. They are also criss-crossed with delicate, characteristic red veins. The plant develops many beautiful flowers that bloom intensely blue to purple. The flowers are also velvety to the touch. They can reach a diameter of up to 12 cm. However, many varieties that can be obtained from retailers in this country only reach a diameter of just under 6 cm. Regardless of their size, the flowers, which consist of five unfolded petals, are very attractive. In the middle of the flowers are slightly kinked, thin, long stamens that are reminiscent of spider legs. They have this characteristic in common with other species from the black-mouthed family.

As a late bloomer, the flowers always appear on the annual wood. The numerous flowers can remain open for up to four days in good light conditions and little heat. If it’s too hot, close earlier. In general, the violet tree has a long flowering period, which often extends from late summer to the following spring. The ornamental plant often takes longer before it even begins to bloom, usually around the end of August. The warmer the summer, the faster the flowers usually come. Older leaves change color in autumn; the green gives way to magnificent orange to red tones.

The Tibouchina can easily be 4 meters high in the bucket, the width of the plant usually remains half a meter. In the indoor culture, the growth is correspondingly smaller, you can expect a growth of up to 80 cm.


Since the princess flower is one of the very fast-growing plants, it should be repotted once a year, at least every two years. The best time to repot is in spring. Here are the tips:

  • Do not choose too large a pot. If the pot is large, it stimulates the plant to grow, but the energy is put into the formation of new roots. As a result, there are significantly fewer flowers.
  • If the pot is too big, there is a risk of waterlogging, as it takes longer for the soil to dry out.
  • As a rule of thumb, the new pot should be about 5 cm larger than the old one. So the plant grows slowly but steadily with the pot and produces many, magnificent flowers.
  • Choose a planter with a well-functioning drainage system.
  • Use new substrate every time you repot.


Since the plant grows quickly, the shoots of the Tibouchina are often not particularly stable. Trellises, for example simple bamboo sticks, ensure stability. This problem is minimized by choosing a good location that offers protection from winds.

Location and substrate

For good growth and strong flower formation, the Tibouchina needs a warm, sunny location with plenty of light. Excessive blazing sun could damage the flowers, but the plant should never be in the shade, as then foliage loss would be inevitable.

During the summer months, the princess flower loves a suitable location outdoors. It is not important whether it is a balcony, garden or terrace. The location should be a little sheltered from the wind.

The best substrate for the Tibouchina is loose and permeable. Ideally, it consists of coarse-grained parts, for example expanded clay or gravel. A loose mixture of humus and sand is also suitable.

The violet tree is sensitive to lime, so the substrate should be rather acidic. Ready-made rhododendron soil from specialist retailers with a pH value of around 6 is suitable for the bucket.


  • In the summer, especially if it is outdoors with a lot of sun, plenty of water must be provided to prevent detrimental dry phases.
  • In the case of indoor culture, however, it is better to water more moderately, as the plant is sensitive to waterlogging.
  • When watering, make sure that the top layer of soil has already dried before watering again.
  • Do not let the root ball dry out completely.
  • Warning: If the princess flower is left dry for too long, it will spontaneously shed flowers and leaves.
  • Watering should be reduced in winter.
  • Since the Tibouchina is generally sensitive to lime, gardeners who know that they have hard tap water should use decalcified water.
  • If you can, you collect rainwater for watering, it is in principle softer than tap water.


Thanks to the many magnificent flowers, the princess flower also consumes a lot of nutrients. Therefore it is important to fertilize regularly, especially in the growth phase from April to September. A liquid fertilizer that is added to the irrigation water is suitable for the plant. Pay particular attention that the fertilizer is low in lime. We recommend fertilizer mixtures for rhododendrons. Depending on the plant and the concentration of the preparation, it is advisable to fertilize 1 to 4 times a month. Then the Tibouchina blooms diligently and vigorously.

To cut

The violet tree is one of the rather fast-growing plants, but naturally does not branch very well. It is therefore advisable to start with regular cutting with the young tibouchinas. By pruning the plant, you achieve a bushy growth, which is then lavishly studded with flowers. To do this, this year’s shoots are removed from the plants until a compact shape is achieved. To achieve optimal branching, always start the cut behind the second pair of leaves.

After flowering, the new shoots should be cut back so that the plant can concentrate on producing new buds. Since the Tibouchina flowers on annual wood, pruning leads to abundant flowers. Excessively long or protruding shoots must be cut off in any case, these are usually not strong and hang down over time.

Depending on how the plant grows, it can happen that the Tibouchina is cut up to three times a year. If you prune three times a year, it is best to do so in the months of March to June.


The pretty princess flower is not hardy. That is why it is important to regularly listen to the weather report by mid-October at the latest. If temperatures drop below 5 degrees, the Tibouchina must be brought inside. In the best case, don’t wait for the first frosts, as the plant won’t survive outdoors. This is how the winter quarters should be designed:

  • Choose a bright winter location.
  • Keep the temperature between 10 and 15 degrees.
  • In colder temperatures there is a risk of damage.
  • Tibouchina prefers high humidity.
  • Ventilate vigorously on milder days!
  • Do not fertilize in winter.
  • Reduce watering and absolutely avoid waterlogging.
  • As soon as it is regularly around 15 degrees outside and the sun is shining, the bucket can go outside.
  • Cut back the shoots of the plant before the winter break.


The violet tree can be propagated quite easily from cuttings. For this purpose, cut off shoots are put in soil in spring. Keep the cuttings moist; conditions in a greenhouse or planter are best. The cuttings usually take root easily. It is worthwhile to let the small plants grow in sheltered conditions from summer to winter. Placing in their own tubs can then take place in spring.

Diseases and pests

The plants of the Tibouchina are quite robust against diseases and pests. Failure to care for the leaves occasionally results in yellow to brown leaves. If the air in the winter quarters is too dry, spider mites can attack the plant. These are usually easy to remove with a mild shower and can also be scraped off the underside of the leaves with a blunt knife.

The princess flower impresses with its splendor of flowers in intense shades of blue and purple. The container plant is a great eye-catcher, as it often flowers very long into the year. With regular pruning and the right winter quarters, the Tibouchina can achieve a compact growth of several meters, but the plant also thrives well in indoor cultivation.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *