Torenia fournieri has many fancy faces!

Torenia fournieri (Bluewings, Wishbone Flower, Torenia)

Torenia fournieri Torenia fournieri (Bluewings)

Plant Profile, Culture and Propagation :

  • Botanical Name: Torenia fournieri
  • Common Name: Bluewings, Wishbone Flower, Torenia
  • Family name: Scrophulariaceae
  • Plant type: Flowering annual with height of 6-12 inches, maybe even as tall as 15″ and a spread almost as wide for a very healthy plant
  • Light: Partial to full shade, but can tolerate hot sun. Thrives well with morning sun and afternoon shade
  • Moisture: Requires lots of water, so do not let it dry between watering
  • Soil: Grows best in consistently moist soil, preferably compost-enriched
  • Propagation: From germination of seeds or herbaceous stem cuttings. Cuttings root easily without the need of rooting hormone, just stick them into the soil and in a couple of weeks they’ll establish themselves! However, I would prefer to let them self-sow (which they do so easily and abundantly), then I’ll replant the seedlings wherever I wish! It’s not unusual to find self-sown seedlings sprouting from the drainage holes of hanging pots, on mossy bricks and even between cracks in walls or concrete pavement! Hmm…aren’t they productive and great survivors? ;)
  • Torenia fournieri (Bluewings)Features: The Bluewings is a low herbaceous plant which is not higher than a foot tall with a spread as wide or lesser.
    A compact and erect annual bush with toothed leaves and tiny blossoms which have petals of various colors with yellow or white throats. Flowers may be in single color or bicolors of bluish-purple, violet, white, pink, magenta-red or yellow.
    It’s also commonly named as Wishbone flower as two wishbone shaped stamens that are joined at their tips emerge from inside its corolla tube and will split when the flower is ready for pollination.
  • Usage: They are very suitable as mass planting in flower beds, borders and containers or patio pots, including window boxes. Being non-stop bloomers, they’ll be great ground covers and companions among ferns, hostas and other foliage plants to brighten and add color to the area. Most attractive too when grown in hanging baskets where their delicately soft stems fall beautifully over their sides. In fact, torenias are most ideal for hanging baskets as they have a mounded to trailing habit!
  • Care: These plants are so fuss-free, easy to grow and needing hardly much attention besides the usual watering and fertilizing! Pinch young shoots to promote bushiness and bloom production! Light pruning by pinching is advisable to help keep the plant in shape. Deadheading is unnecessary as their seedheads are quite pretty. Watch out for mealy bugs and slugs though that just adores them!
  • For temperate regions: Check these well-informed sites, here and here for more plant info.

Though blossoms are delicate and tiny, they’re such an asset to our tropical garden! Beautifying every nook and corner with their smiling and colorful faces! Really great performers all through the year!

Self-seeded Torenia (Wishbone Flowers) on the ground Self-sowed Torenia (Bluewings) in containers

Three years ago, we bought 4 varieties (a plant each) of this Torenia fournieri in shades of pink, magenta, bluish-purple and purplish-white. And to our amazement, they have ‘inter-married’ with some help from the insect pollinators, resulting in many more colors, as well as HAVE NOT STOP SELF-SEEDING! Isn’t that great – free Torenias for life, this is much, much, more than our money’s worth! The best thing in life is whatever is free, isn’t it? :D

Updated on July 3, 2007 – See the many fancy faces of Torenia in this lovely collage of 9 images of Wishbone Flower, thriving in our garden!

Last edited: May 27, 2016

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2 Responses to “Torenia fournieri has many fancy faces!”

  1. elaine Says:

    thanks so much for this info!!!
    just bought a blue wishbone plant and put it out on our patio.

  2. Jacqueline Says:

    You’re most welcome, Elaine! May your plant keep smiling for you endlessly! We just love torenias, they’re such reliable bloomers and forever self-seeding too! :-D

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