Want to grow some exquisite plants to enhance your garden? ‘Sapphire Showers’ is an option worth considering!
‘Sapphire showers’ is an exotic variety of a flowering shrub species called Duranta Erecta. This plant is easy to care for; you just have to fulfill its basic needs, like full sun, well-draining soil, and enough water.
Read on to learn about its care requirements in detail.
An Introduction to Sapphire Showers Golden Dewdrop
Table of Contents
‘Sapphire showers’ grows as a beautiful large shrub or a small tree, producing cascading clusters of vibrant violet blooms with white edges.
These flowers attract butterflies and various birds, making them a great addition to any garden or landscape. The plant also produces orange berries in late summer.
Sapphire Showers are commonly called Pigeon Berry, Picotee Sky Flower, and Golden Dewdrop. (Note: In this blog, we have also referred to Sapphire Showers by its other common names. Don’t get confused; all these names refer to the same Duranta plant).
‘Sapphire Showers’ belongs to a genus called Duranta in the Verbena family, Verbenaceae. This genus includes 17 species of ornamental plants originating from Mexico to South America to the Caribbean. Some popular Duranta species are Erecta, Dombeyana, Mutisii, Serratifolia, Tenostachya, and Triacantha.
Sapphire Showers Golden Dewdrop is a variety of the Duranta Erecta species. Other varieties in the Duranta Erecta species are Aurea, Alba, Geisha Girl, Aussie Gold, and Golden Edge.
Alba features clusters of white flowers, while Golden Edge displays bright, gold, and green foliage. Similarly, each variety of Duranta plants has its unique characteristics.
Duranta Erecta Sapphire Showers are perennial evergreens that thrive well in tropical and subtropical regions of USDA zones 8 to 12. To grow them in containers, you need a space of 12 to 15 feet to accommodate their mature spread.
Care Requirements of Sapphire Showers
Regular watering is essential for producing lush foliage and more blooms. New plants need water more frequently than established ones. Also, pot plants may require more water than plants in the ground, depending on the plant variety, pot size, and potting mix.
Don’t let the soil turn completely dry, especially in hot and dry weather. Their leaves start wilting if you leave them thirsty for long. But also, be careful not to overwater them because excess moisture can cause root problems.
- Check the ground or potting mix for dryness every week in the growing season. Water if the top 2 to 3 inches of soil feels dry.
- Water slowly to avoid splashing its leaves or making the soil soggy.
- In each watering session, keep adding water to the pot slowly until it comes out from the drainage holes.
- Reduce your watering frequency in autumn and winter because the plant doesn’t grow much in these seasons.
A Duranta plant can only grow in well-drained soil.
Rich and loamy soils work the best if you want to grow Sapphire Showers Golden Dewdrop as annuals in USDA zones below 8. However, they can tolerate lean soils when grown in USDA zones 10 to 11 because they offer the most favorable growing conditions.
Light & Temperature
Golden Dewdrops love warm climates. They need more than four hours of full sun to produce healthy foliage and abundant flowers. They turn lanky and sparse if kept in the shade for too long.
Golden Dewdrops thrive well in high temperatures. In fact, they can flourish even under triple-digit temperatures. They do well in both dry and humid conditions.
Winters are tough for Golden Dewdrops. If grown outdoors, they can’t survive the harsh winter in USDA hardiness zone 1 to 7. If you live in these zones, you should only grow Golden Dewdrops as a houseplant or a summer annual.
Have you kept your Duranta plant outdoors? Bring it inside in winter if the temperatures fall below 40-degree Fahrenheit where you live. This Duranta plant naturally dies back to its roots and revives in the spring again, killing frost or mild freezes.
Most Duranta plants are not very heavy feeders, but they need an extra boost of nutrients to grow healthy blooms.
Fertilization is even more critical for Pigeon Berry plants growing in sandy soils or regions with high rainfall during summer.
- Use a slow-release fertilizer around the root zone monthly during the growing seasons (spring and summer). Increase the frequency if you see yellowing foliage.
- The first application of a slow-release fertilizer should be around the spring season when the plant comes out of dormancy and unfurls its leaves.
- Before applying fertilizer, ensure the soil is moist to avoid root burn.
- Stop using fertilizer in late autumn and winter because the plant goes into rest mode during the cooler months.
Although Duranta Erecta Sapphire Showers grow compactly, they need regular pruning to maintain a neat look. They will grow to heights of 15 to 20 feet without pruning due to their arching habit. However, they won’t look as aesthetic and healthy as carefully-pruned plants.
Removing long, scraggly branches gives your plant a well-rounded shape. It also opens the plant’s canopy enough to let air and light circulate through its center.
Also, removing deadhead spent flowers also stimulates the growth of new, healthy flowers. Spent flowers lose their color and start shedding petals. (Note: Don’t cut off old flowers if you want your plant to produce attractive berries).
Prune aggressive branches in late winter or early spring, just before the plant comes out of its dormancy and enters the growing season. The newly-produced energy in the growing season helps the plant heal from the cuts quickly.
However, you can perform light, selective pruning throughout the year to remove broken, dead, or discolored leaves and branches.
The process is easy: you must take clean and sanitized shears and remove at least 1/3rd of the plant’s oldest branches to lighten up the canopy.
Cut at least 1/4th inch above the branches and flower stalks, leaving behind enough material to promote new growth.
The most common pests attracted to Picotee Skyflower are aphids, mites, and whiteflies. These insects suck the sap and leave wounds on stems and leaves. You must clear them with streaming water and apply insecticidal soap to the plant.