Weidner: Name says it all with Golden Candles plants


Light up your garden with Golden Candles. This is a plant where the common name really tells it all.

Say Pachystachys Lutea and your eyes cloud over with boredom. Say Golden Candles and you get an instant image of light and beauty. The name describes this wonderful plant completely. Golden Candle plants have tall stems of bright golden yellow spires of blooms that light up your patio or shade garden, and are also known as the Lollipop plant or Golden Shrimp plant. By any name this is a plant that belongs in your garden.

Emerging from the golden yellow spires are small, dainty white tube-like flowers. Those little white tubes are the true blooms. The golden yellow parts are modified leaves called bracts. Poinsettias and Bougainvilleas are the easiest bract flowers that everyone knows. With bract types of blooms, the true flowers are usually so insignificant that you hardly notice them.

Those little white tubular true flowers of the Golden Candles are packed with sweet nectar. The Hummingbirds will come calling and your grandchildren will love to suck on them for that sweet taste. Because bracts last a long time, your flowers will stay attractive for weeks and weeks before fading.

Golden Candles plants enjoy a shaded spot in your patio or garden. It can be a pot plant, planted in a shady flower bed or given a home in the atrium. It will also make a smashing eye-catching centerpiece in a larger combination. Yes, you can even bring it into the house.

Easy to care for, all you need to do is feed, water and occasionally trim back your Golden Candles plants. When those golden yellow spires finally begin to brown, take your clippers and cut them off somewhere below the flower. The stem that is left will branch and you will soon have two new spires.

For your evening entertaining, remember that yellow and white show up at night. Blues and reds fade without light.

Here are some other tips for success. Make sure your pot is large enough to have enough soil to capture and store the water. Too small a pot means that the plant dries out too quickly. The rule of thumb for transplanting up to a larger pot is usually 2 inches larger than the current size.

If your Golden Candles is in a 6-inch pot, you would re-pot it into an 8-inch pot. However, if you are putting your 6-inch potted plant into a 24-inch great big gorgeous pot, your plant will drown from over water unless you plant smaller filler plants around the base of the plant to help use the water.

When the colder weather appears, you have some choices. Move your plants into the warmest, most protected area like a sunny spot indoors to let it survive the winter chill, or leave your plants where they are and take a chance on the cold. You may feel that you enjoyed your plants to the fullest and are ready for a winter replacement of cyclamen and poinsettias.

Other plants that go happily with Golden Candles are orange Crossandra, white Bacopa, red Begonia Dragon Wings or any of the many other Cane varieties of Begonias, Coleus or any of the easy green mixer plants.

Check this plant out at Weidner’s Gardens or many of your local garden centers.