Sinningia is one of the most widely grown and loved genera in the gesneriads. Cultivars range from the hugely flowered hybrids of S. speciosa, to the tiny S. pusilla, several whole plants of which could fit in a single bloom of a speciosa hybrid.

This is a large genus native to the rainforests of South America. It has been in cultivation for close to two centuries, with many hybrids produced over the years. The Florist Gloxinia (hybrids of S. speciosa) bear little resemblance to the original species and should be considered a "created" kind of plant. There are many other species and hybrids, however, which are at least as worthy of cultivation, and eminently deserving of the amateur grower's attentions.

Almost all of the Sinningias grow from tubers, storage organs that allow the plant to survive periods of drought, cold or other conditions inhospitable to growth. Under normal conditions, Sinningias will grow and flower, followed by a gradual decline in the plant culminating in full dormancy. After a period with no above-ground presence, the tuber will send up new growth and the cycle will repeat.

Some cultivars can be induced to remain in almost perpetual growth, with no period of full dormancy. Others may go dormant, and never "break dormancy", or begin new growth. But most plants will produce new and better growth after a period of dormant inactivity.

In general, Sinningias should be grown in a medium that retains moisture but allows good drainage. Perpetually wet soil may result in rotting of the tuber, while dry conditions will usually induce premature dormancy. Evenly moist conditions are desirable for most species and hybrids. Regular light fertilization (e.g. 20-20-20 water soluble fertilizer at the rate of 1/4 tsp. per gallon with every watering) is desirable, although some of the more robust cultivars will respond favorably to a more concentrated solution, and some of the smaller cultivars need very little feeding.

The Florist Gloxinia (hybrids of S. speciosa) requires bright conditions, and can be grown very well under bright fluorescent lights or in a greenhouse. Most of the other cultivars do well under lights, and many tolerate windowsill conditions if humidity can be kept up and bright light provided without too much direct sun. A few cultivars, such as S. 'Apricot Bouquet', tolerate outdoor culture in full sun or partial shade, and make excellent patio plants.


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Sinningia aghensis

Sinningia aghensis
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Sinningia aggregata

Sinningia aggregata (Wisley)

Sinningia aggregata 'Pendulina'




yellow (Smithsonian)

Sinningia allagophylla

Sinningia araneosa flowers

Sinningia araneosa AGGS04

Sinningia araneosa in nature

Sinningia araneosa AGGS02

Sinningia barbata (Kew)
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Sinningia brasiliensis

Sinningia bulbosa

Sinningia calcaria AGGS02

Sinningia calcaria (Smithsonian)

Sinningia canescens and Sinningia leucotricha

Sinningia canescens flowers

Sinningia cardinalis

Sinningia cardinalis compact form

Sinningia cardinalis 'Umbellata'

Sinningia cardinalis 'Redcoat'
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Sinningia cardinalis (pink)

Sinningia cardinalis 'George Kalmbacher'

Sinningia cardinalis 'George Kalmbacher' x S. cardinalis 'Innocent'

Sinningia cardinalis 'Innocent'

Sinningia cardinalis 'Innocent'

Sinningia cardinalis 'Innocent' flower cluster (Price)

Sinningia cardinalis 'Innocent' (Price)

Sinningia cardinalis  orange cultivar

Sinningia cardinalis (orange)

Sinningia cardinalis flowers (orange)

Sinningia cochlearis

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Sinningia concinna (AGGS98)

Sinningia concinna

Sinningia concinna closeup 1

Sinningia concinna closeup 2

Sinningia concinna whole plant

Sinningia conspicua (detail)
Sinningia conspicua

Sinningia conspicua 2
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Sinningia cooperi tuber
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Sinningia defoliata

Sinningia defoliata (Price and Shalit)

Sinningia douglasii plant
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Sinningia douglasii sprouting tuber

Sinningia douglasii flower

Sinningia douglasii flower

Sinningia elatior flower

Sinningia elatior
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Sinningia eumorpha (white)

Sinningia eumorpha

Sinningia eumorpha (detail)

Sinningia eumorpha 'Pink Eumorpha'
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Sinningia eumorpha and S. concinna

Sinningia gertiana

Sinningia globulosa seed pods

Sinningia globulosa plant

Sinningia guttata flowers

Sinningia guttata flower closeup

Sinningia guttata plant

Sinningia guttata

Sinningia harleyi

Sinningia hatschbachii

Sinningia hirsuta

Sinningia hirsuta AGGS02

Sinningia iarae
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Sinningia iarae (with tuber)

Sinningia sp. 'Ibitioca' tuber

Sinningia sp. 'Ibitioca' in nature

Sinningia sp 'Ibitioca' flower

Sinningia sp. 'Ibitioca' plant
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Sinningia incarnata

Sinningia incarnata (Smithsonian)

Sinningia leucotricha

Sinningia leucotricha (2)
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Sinningia leucotricha (flower)
Sinningia leucotricha (foliage)

Sinningia leucotricha flowers (Smithsonian)

Sinningia leucotricha

Sinningia leucotricha (show plant)

Sinningia lindleyi
Sinningia lineata (Geneva Botanical Garden)

Sinningia lineata plants (Geneva Botanical Garden)

Sinningia lineata flowers (Geneva Botanical Garden)
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Sinningia lineata flowers side view
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Sinningia lineata flowers
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Sinningia lineata plant
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Sinningia macropoda plant

Sinningia macropoda
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Sinningia macropoda flowers

Sinningia macrostachya tuber
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Sinningia macrostachya
Sinningia magnifica
Sinningia micans inflorescence (Kew)

Sinningia micans flowers (Kew)

Sinningia micans tuber (Kew)

Sinningia nivalis AGGS02

Sinningia piresiana plant (probable)

Sinningia piresiana flowers  (probable)

Sinningia pusilla

Sinningia pusilla 'White Sprite'

Sinningia pusilla 'White Sprite' (detail)
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Sinningia pusilla (AGGS98)

Sinningia aff reitzii plant (Geneva Botanical Garden)

Sinningia aff reitzii (Geneva Botanical Garden)

Sinningia reitzii woody stems

Sinningia reitzii

Sinningia reitzii leaf

Sinningia reitzii flowers

Sinningia richii (Smithsonian)

Sinningia richii

Sinningia richii

Sinningia sp. "Rio das Pedras" flower

Sinningia sp. "Rio das Pedras"

Sinningia sp. "Rio das Pedras"
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Sinningia rupicola
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Sinningia rupicola flowers

Sinningia rupicola AGGS02

Sinningia sp. "Santa Teresa" in nature

Sinningia sp. "Santa Teresa" flowers

Sinningia sp. "Santa Teresa" seed pods

Sinningia sp. "Santa Teresa" tuber and leaves
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Sinningia sceptrum  and warmingii flowers

Sinningia sellovii flowers (AGGS 04)

Sinningia sellovii and hummingbird
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Sinningia sellovii
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Sinningia sellovii (Smithsonian)

Sinningia sellovii AGGS02

Sinningia sellovii AGGS02

Sinningia sellovii (Smithsonian 2)

Sinningia sellovii flowers (Toronto 04)

Sinningia sellovii plant (AGGS 04)
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Sinningia schiffneri (dark)

Sinningia schiffneri (green leaf)
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Sinningia schiffneri flowers

Sinningia speciosa 'Carangola' flowers

Sinningia speciosa 'Carangola' plant

Sinningia speciosa 'Carangola' flowers

Sinningia speciosa 'Carangola' in nature

Sinningia speciosa 'Carangola' flower in cultivation

Sinningia speciosa 'Lavender Queen' 2

Sinningia speciosa 'Lavender Queen?'

Sinningia speciosa 'Regina'

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Sinningia speciosa (wild collection)

Sinningia speciosa  'Lavender Queen'

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Sinningia tuberosa

Sinningia tubiflora AGGS02

Sinningia tubiflora Best In Show

Sinningia tubiflora new sprouts (Kew)

Sinningia warmingii

Sinningia valsuganensis

Sinningia warmingii

Sinningia warmingii flower cluster

Sinningia waechteri

Sinningia sp. 'waechteri'

Sinningia sp. 'waechteri'

Sinningias in gesneriad bed at Kew


Sinningia 'Allan Gardens'

Sinningia 'Amizade' flowers
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Sinningia 'Amizade' plant

Sinningia 'Apricot Bouquet' (detail)

Sinningia 'Apricot Bouquet'

Sinningia 'Apricot Bouquet' GS07

Sinningia 'April Snow'

Sinningia 'Bewitched'

Sinningia 'Bright Eyes'

Sinningia 'Bright Eyes'

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Sinningia 'Carnaval'

Sinningia 'Charm'

Sinningia 'China Teacup'

Sinningia 'Country Pink'

Sinningia 'Dollbaby'

Sinningia 'Double Blue'
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Sinningia 'Flair'

Sinningia 'Freckles'

Sinningia 'Gabriel's Horn' Toronto 04

Sinningia 'Gabriel's Horn'
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Sinningia 'Gold Peg'
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Sinningia hybrid ('Bewitched' x iarae)
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Sinningia hybrid (braziliensis x aggregata)
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Sinningia hybrid (braziliensis x aggregata) flowers
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Sinningia hybrid ('Flair' x 'Super Orange' pink)
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Sinningia hybrid ('Flair' x 'Super Orange' purple)
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Sinningia hybrid (glazioviana x eumorpha) AGGS98
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Sinningia hybrid (glazioviana x eumorpha) AGGS98
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Sinningia hybrid (leucotricha x 'Good Pink')

Sinningia hybrid (lineata x iarae)
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Sinningia hybrid (macrorrhiza x 'Redcoat') flower
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Sinningia hybrid (macrorrhiza x 'Redcoat') plant
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Sinningia hybrid (from 'Redcoat')
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Sinningia hybrid (double, from 'Redcoat')
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Sinningia hybrid (SI, from 'Redcoat') flower
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Sinningia hybrid (SI, from 'Redcoat') flower cluster
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Sinningia hybrid (SI, from 'Redcoat') plant
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Sinningia hybrid  (striata x eumorpha)
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Sinningia hybrid ('Super Orange' x 'Tampa Bay Beauty'
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Sinningia 'Kaleidoscope'

Sinningia 'Lavender Lace'

Sinningia 'Leo'

Sinningia 'Little Tiger'

Sinningia 'Little Tiger' (detail)

Sinningia 'Little Tiger', 'Bright Eyes' and 'Ruffled Wood Nymph'

Sinningia 'Love Potion'

Sinningia 'Miriam G'

Sinningia 'Neon Rose'

Sinningia 'Orange Raindrops'

Sinningia 'Ozark Sentimental Journey'
Sinningia 'Pale Beauty'
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Sinningia 'Paper Moon'

Sinningia 'Pink Panther'

Sinningia 'Pop Tart'

Sinningia 'Razzmatazz'

Sinningia 'Razzmatazz' flower

Sinningia 'Red Canyon'

Sinningia 'Ruffled Wood Nymph'

Sinningia speciosa 'Aurora Borealis'

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Sinningia speciosa 'Diego'

Sinningia speciosa 'Double Brocade'

Sinningia speciosa double hybrid

Sinningia speciosa hybrid

Sinningia speciosa Lawn hybrids

Sinningia speciosa 'Lela'
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Sinningia speciosa 'Merry Christmas' (AGGS98)

Sinningia speciosa 'Paschia'
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Sinningia speciosa 'Touch of Spice'

Sinningia 'Super Orange'

Sinningia 'Tiger Chips'

Sinningia 'Tinkerbells'

Sinningia 'Tinkerbells'

Sinningia 'Tomorrow'

Sinningia 'Tomorrow' flower face
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Sinningia 'Treva's Treasure' flowers

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Sinningia 'Treva's Treasure'

Sinningia 'Wood Nymph'

Sinningia 'Zel






More Reading:

  • Slippery

  • Sock

  • Sometime

  • Sour

  • Sow

  • Spade

  • Spill

  • Spoon

  • Stocking

  • Strap