Discover the different types of Nierembergia Flowers that you can grow in your rock garden and get tips on how to plant and care for these heat-loving perennial plants.
The Nierembergia plant is commonly known as the Cup flower. It belongs to the Nightshade family and is named after a Spanish mystic called Juan Eusebio Nieremberg. The annual flower is called the Cup flower because the shape of the flower looks like an open-faced bowl.
The Nierembergia is a heat-loving plant that produces a lot of flowers in one go. The perennial plant grows relatively easily in neat, compact mounding structures.
Table of Contents
Types of Nierembergia Plants
There are many types of Nierembergia plants that you can grow in your rock garden. They have been naturalized in many parts of the world due to their showy nature. They are also pretty hardy, which means that growers don’t have to do much to find a nice yield of flowers in the summers.
Here are some of the most popular ones.
Nierembergia Rivularis belongs to the Solanaceae family and is used as an ornamental plant in many regions. The common name for the plant is White Cup flower or the Water Nierembergia. It is native to South America where it grows in abundance and has been naturalized to many other regions of the world.
It is mostly seen in rock gardens and alpines where the white color of the plant looks fantastic. The annual plant needs to be watered regularly but owners should make sure not to overwater the plant. Overwatering can cause the roots to rot and weigh down the leaves of the plant so that they begin to droop.
It can thrive in full sun to partial shade. The plant can survive in mildly acidic to alkaline soil (pH 6.1 to 8.5). It grows well in Hardiness USDA zones 7-10. The best place to grow the plant is outdoors since it likes the sun and spreads well. The soil type should be moist but well-drained. You can also grow it in a soil-based potting mix in full light.
The herbaceous plant can be grown up to 12-18” inches in height. They can spread to a width of 15-24” inches which is a great ground cover. This can protect the soil and create a great looking blanket of flowers across the ground. The flower is white in color, which looks lovely against the dark green foliage of the plant. The flowers have a yellow center and a bell shape. The bloom season of the plant is from mid-summer till late summer or fall.
You can use herbaceous stem cuttings or seeding to propagate the plant. You can directly sow the plant outdoors in fall or after the last frost has passed. If you want to sow the plant during winter it is a good idea to sow it in a cold frame or unheated greenhouses. Even vented containers can work for Nierembergia Rivularis.
The plant is perfect for mass planting, hanging baskets, container gardening, and rock gardens. It is susceptible to whiteflies under the grass and aphids. It can also become damaged by snails and slugs if you plant it outside. In some rare cases, it can also get affected by some viruses such as the tobacco mosaic virus.
The Nierembergia Espinosae was characterized by IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as endangered plant type in 2004. Since then it has been virtually lost from gardens and may exist somewhere in the wild. It is native to Ecuador and belongs to the family of Solanaceae.
The Nierembergia Repens belongs to the family of Solanaceae. The Chilean name of the plant is Estrellita de las vegas, and it is also commonly known as the Creeping White Cup. The tender perennial plant has white flowers, usually with 5 petals.
In Chile, these plants grow well in the wild habitats. They grow close to the timberline in higher altitudes and up till the timberline in medium altitudes. The plant can even grow in places where the roots are on a permanent watercourse. This means that it can persist in habitats like river shores, lakes, watercourses, bogs, and marshes.
The soil should have good drainage, so you should select a gritty soil to plant the Creeping White Cup. It is a drought-tolerant plant, which is perfect for people who routinely forget to water their plants. It is great for troubled areas where nothing else grows because it is hardy and requires low maintenance.
The plant is a small plant type, reaching up to 4” inches in height. It spreads really well, reaching a width of 18” inches. It has deep green oblong leaves that cover the ground well. They develop runners on top and under the soil, making sure that no erosion can take place. They can also grow well in containers, especially if the plant is allowed to drape over the edge.
The beautiful white flowers cover the entire plant when blooming season comes in the summers. They tend to bloom even more if they are given plenty of sun. However, they can also thrive in conditions with some shadow or protection from direct sunlight. This makes it possible for the plant to grow in conditions where exposure to a really hot sun could potentially burn the leaves. It can grow well in Hardiness Zone 7 and even 6b. The plant will also tolerate low temperatures (-15° C to -20° C) and survive; some cases are known to survive snow for 1-8 months as well.
They are excellent as a lawn substitute plant since they tend to grow well around roses and between stones. They have really great ornamental value since the white color of the flower looks great against the dark green leaves of the plant. Flowering starts from early summer and goes on until fall.
Nierembergia Scoparia is commonly known as the Mont Blac in some regions. The plant is native to Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay but has been naturalized in North America as well. It was even named the All-America Selection winner of 1993.
The herbaceous perennial plant thrives in Hardiness Zones 7 to 10 and has a high heat tolerance than other species in the Nierembergia category. It is known as the Tall Cup Flower in some regions as well since it can reach a height of 1-2.5’ feet. It also spreads across the ground at a width of 1-2.5’ feet, creating a blanket of flowers.
The small cup-shaped flowers are showy, which is why they are used for ornamental purposes. The plant has two main flower colors: white and pale blue. The bloom season usually starts in May and ends when the frost begins. The pale blue flowers are great as cut flowers and look really great in vases, window boxes, and flower gardens.
The plant thrives in full sun to part shade and is best used as an annual plant. The plant doesn’t need a lot of water and can thrive well with medium water. The best soil type is moist or organically rich soil. Moist soil will be great for the plant but it is important to make sure that it also drains well. You should keep an eye on the soil so that it doesn’t turn brittle.
You may want to add some mulch in the summer months to keep the soil moist and cool. The seeds of the plants should be sown directly into the garden at least 2 weeks before the last frost comes or sown indoors 6-8 weeks before the last frost. The lowest temperature it can bare is -18° to -12°C. It is recommended that young plants should be pinched as well to ensure that it grows busy.
The Nierembergia Hippomanica (pronounced nee-rem-BERJ-ee-ah hip-oh-MAN-ih-kah) is commonly known as the Purple Robe due to its pretty blue-violet flowers. It belongs to the Solanaceae and is native to Argentina. It can thrive in coastal, mountainous and piedmont situations.
The tender perennial prefers well-drained, moist soil which is high in organic matter. The soil should have a neutral pH level of 6.0-8.0. The seeds of the plant can be planted indoors 8-10 weeks before the last frost comes around. They can also be planted directly outdoors during the spring and fall seasons. The plant is perfect for 8-11 Hardiness zones. The plant is perfect for ground cover or as an edging or border plant.
It prefers full sun with 6 or more hours of direct sunlight but in hotter climates it better to give it some partial shade. The plant is resistant to deer and is known to be a spreading mound plant. It grows rapidly, so you can expect plenty of flowers by the time summer rolls around. The flowers last for a long time and are showy, which looks lovely in the garden. The bloom season for the plant is summer and fall. The cup-shaped flowers grow to be 1-3” inches.
The Nierembergia Purple Robe is often used for ornamental purposes and grown in hanging baskets, ornamental grass, and containers.
The Nierembergia Veitchii is known as the White Mug flower and belongs to the nightshade family of Solanaceae. The species is mostly found in the northwest to middle Argentina. The species was first documented by William Jackson Hooker in 1866. Many people confuse it with other species like caerulea or petunias.
It is creeping plant that has 40cm long rooting sprouts. The leaves of the plant are short-stalked, pointed and elliptic. They can grow to a length of 13-37mm and grow a maximum of 5-13mm in width. The flowers of the Nierembergia Veitchii are also small since they only grow 14 to 25mm. The entire plant is often large but compact, growing up to 12-15” inches across
The compact mounding plant gets completely covered in flowers from early summer all the way to fall. The flowers are blue-ish purple or white and are shaped like saucers. They have bright yellow centers that look lovely against the dark green leaves and colorful petals. Their color is very long-lasting and doesn’t even fade with the sun. It can only survive in Hardiness zones 7-10 and can even grow as an annual in colder regions. They thrive in hot environments as well.
These Nierembergia flowers are used as edging plants or sown in containers and rock gardens. They are great for window boxes and hanging baskets as well.
If you are planning on planting it indoor, you should plant it 8-10 weeks before the last frost. It germinates in around 2-3 weeks and should be kept moist until the seedlings begin to emerge. After that, the plants can be kept on the dry side as well. The young plants tend to grow very slowly but will grow at a rapid rate once they are transplanted.
You can transplant them outdoors and space them at 6-12” inches apart. Do make sure that you plant them before the last frost arrives in organically rich, moist, and well-drained soil types. They need to be kept in full sun and mulch should be added to keep the soil moist and cool.
Once they have established, they are drought-tolerant, so they don’t need to be watered that much. You can also use the stem cuttings over summer to ensure that the plant holds over the colder weather. Plants are drought tolerant once established. Stem cuttings can be taken in late summer to hold the plants over the winter.
The Nierembergia flowers are really easy to take care off. All you need to do is maintain a good schedule of sunlight for the plants to thrive in. They also prefer soil which is rich in nutrients; if you want plenty of flowers for your rock garden, you should put a layer of manure on top of the soil. This ensures that the flowers are well-nourished and warm.
Do make sure to keep the soil moist and well-drained since that best way to ensure that the plants thrive and flourish. This will also increase their chances of lasting through colder seasons. The plants should be watered adequately throughout the year. Do make sure not to overwater them since that can cause the roots to rot and chances of diseases to increase.
Like most perennial plants, you will need to deadhead any excess stems and cut back the dead foliage every year. This is especially necessary right before the cold weather starts. You can also cut some stems so that you can have more new plants once the frosty season has passed. You can also take them indoors during the offseason to ensure that they don’t freeze.
If you take care of the Nierembergia plants, you will definitely be rewarded with a bumper crop of beautiful, vibrant flowers. They are adored by the growing community for a reason since they are the best for ornamental use. You will see them featured in many gardens and vases all over the world due to their loud colors and hardy nature.
Home Stratosphere is an award-winning home and garden online publication that’s a result of our talented researchers and writers who work directly with hundreds of professional interior designers, furniture designers, landscape designers and architects from around the world to create helpful, informative, entertaining and inspiring articles and design galleries.