Aspidistra sinensis 'Cosmos'
Cosmos Cast Iron Plant
This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.Shop Available Aspidistra
Item #: 7548
Zones: 9a to 11
Height: 6" tall
Aspidistra sinensis 'Cosmos', originally offered as a form of Aspidistra saxicola, is a Jim Waddick introduction from the Sichuan Botanical Garden in China, that's made a fantastic container specimen, albeit insanely slow growing. The 7" long x 2.5" wide black-green leaves with almost no stalk are nicely spotted with large, vibrant creamy yellow spots. In October, take a peek at the leaf base and you'll see the cute, small purple flowers.
Aspidistra are very low maintenance perennials. Each leaf can last up to 3 years, but after the second year, it will begin to show signs of aging and leaf degradation. For that reason, we recommend removing all old foliage regularly to retain the attractiveness of the clump. It's always disappointing to see large patches of cast iron plants in public spaces where it hasn't been properly maintained.
Cast iron plants grow well in both moist and dry soils as long as the drainage is good. Aspidistra must be grown in shade, since their foliage will scorch if they are subjected to sun. In the jungles where they grow, they are often seen in very deep shade.
In containers, they make superb house plants. The common name cast iron plant speaks to their durability in less than ideal conditions. Regular moisture, including increased humidity when they are grown as house plants, keeps them from getting stressed and becoming susceptible to spider mites.
The bold texture and upright form of cast iron plants is invaluable in the garden, since there few other plants with this form and texture. Many have amazing flowers, produced at the base of the foliage, often in the winter months. While these flowers are rarely noticed in the garden, they can be quite attractive in the home.