Ixora Plant Care & Propagation - South Florida Caring Guide

Written by Ivy

Jan 11 2023

Ixora Plant Care & Propagation - South Florida Caring Guide

Many people decide to grow the gorgeous ixora plant in their gardens. The amazing star-shaped flowers on Ixora are well known for blooming all year long. This gorgeous plant has the potential to significantly alter your home's appearance and add some color.

Ixora Plant Overview

Botanical Name Ixora coccinea
Common Name Ixora, Maui Red, Ixora Maui Red, Indian Jasmine, Flame of The Woods
Plant Type Perennial(Tropical or Subtropical Environments), Annual (Colder Climates)
Flower Color Reddish Orange
Size When Mature 4-6ft in height, 3-5ft in width
Bloom Time Year-round
Sun Requirements Full Sun
USDA Hardiness Zones 9-11
Soil PH Range 5.5-6.5
Soil Type Acidic, well-draining
Water Needs Medium
Native Area Asia

About Ixora Shrubs

Ixora shrubs may be unknown to you if you don't reside in Florida or another state with a warm climate. The plant can be used as an annual in other zones or as a container plant that is brought inside when freezing temperatures are expected. The plant has stiff, oval, glossy, leathery leaves. The plant is related to and resembles a gardenia in appearance. Clusters of four-petaled florets called blooms can remain on a stem for four to six weeks. Although they can bloom at other times of the year, summer is when flowers are most abundant.

Ixora Flowers

Ixora plants are well known for their exquisite blooms. The year-round blooming, star-shaped flowers make for a great decorative element in any home or garden. Ixora plants are extremely common among gardeners for this reason as well.

Clusters of lovely flowers on the Ixora plant are produced in a wide range of vibrant hues, including red, yellow, orange, and pink. These flowers add a special atmosphere to any garden because of their vibrant, eye-catching colors.

Throughout the entire plant, these flower clusters are dispersed at random. They typically appear at the plant's upright stems' tips, but they can also appear in other places. Flowers can be found on a plant in a variety of formations and locations, which produces a very interesting effect.

Ixora plants produce showy blooms with long, slender-tubed corollas. There are four or occasionally five broad lobes on these. These come in complete heads.

In general, well-established Ixora plants will yield three flower crops annually. The plant appears to be in bloom all year round, though, because individual flowers have such a long lifespan and little time to rest. Because of this, it appears as though Ixora plants are in bloom almost constantly. Another plus is that they frequently begin flowering when they are young, so you won't have to wait long for them to begin producing lovely flowers.


How to Grow Ixora Indoors

Ixora plants can be grown indoors, though most people use them outdoors as hedges or shrubs in the garden. For people who live in colder climates, this is a very wise idea. Ixora plants can be grown in a contained environment, but there are a few considerations.

The most crucial aspect of growing Ixora in a container is finding a pot big enough for your plant. In a container that is smaller than the final size you want it in, you should never let your Ixora become root-bound.

Another thing to keep in mind is that large Ixora plants should only be potted in sufficiently large containers and with coarse, turfy material.

Caring for Your Ixora Plant

If you want to grow Ixora plants, be sure to give them plenty of liquid fertilizer and good hydration. They will become actively growing as a result of this.

They require sun, but not direct sunlight. Although you should avoid growing them in total shade, they can also thrive in partial shade.

The temperature preferences of ixora plants are typically not high. To ensure their success, you should maintain them at a temperature between 65 and 70 degrees F.

Ixora plants frequently display high pest resistance, including to thrips, scale, and white flies. However, there is always a chance that these insects will appear, so watch your plant carefully and get rid of any pests as soon as they show up.


Bright light-filled areas are ideal for the Maui red Ixora's growth. As a result, you should make sure that your indoor plant receives about 8 to 10 hours of sunlight each day.

However, during the summer, you should move your sun away from the direct sunlight to prevent burns or dried-out leaves.

The Ixora Maui red should be able to grow beautifully even in a partially shaded area, even though it prefers full sun for optimum growth.

Water Needs

You will need to water this plant frequently because it has average water requirements. In order to prevent the soil from becoming soggy, make sure it is always moist.

One thorough watering per week ought to be sufficient for outdoor plants. In contrast, depending on the kind of container you are using, indoor plants will need more frequent watering.

The aim of watering your Maui red Ixora is to prevent the soil from drying out completely. Even though it may not be necessary as frequently as in the spring and summer, you may still need to water during the winter.


The Maui red Ixora thrives in humus-rich, well-drained soils. Use a potting mix made for acid-loving plants if you're growing your plant in a pot. The soil you will be using to grow your plants should have a pH range of between 5.5 and 6.5.

The color of the leaves will become dull if the soil pH is higher than 7.0. As a result, it is advised that you monitor the pH of your soil using a soil test kit and take the appropriate action to make adjustments as needed.

Humidity Needs

The Maui red Ixora prefers moist environments because it is a tropical plant. You will need to take action to raise the humidity level around your plant if you live in a dry climate.

Put your plant on a pebble tray as one method of doing this. To increase the humidity in the space where your plant is, you can also use a humidifier.


Temperature Requirements

The tropical nature of this plant indicates that it enjoys warm climates. The Maui red Ixora prefers temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. USDA zones 9 to 11 are the ideal USDA hardiness ranges for these conditions.

You should keep the temperature above 60 degrees Fahrenheit during the winter months to avoid harming the plant. Therefore, it is best to grow your Maui red in a container so that you can overwinter it indoors if you live in a region with cold winters.


An acid-loving plant-formulated, slow-release fertilizer that is balanced is the best fertilizer to use on an Ixora Maui red in the spring. When using liquid fertilizer, you should typically feed your plant once a week throughout the growing season.

For best results, always follow the fertilizer application instructions found on the package.

Common Diseases

The Maui red Izora needs defense against scale and aphids, just like the majority of other Izora varieties. If you ever come across any of these pests on your plant, you should act quickly to get rid of them using neem oil or insecticidal soap.

Plants that are not getting enough iron and manganese may also exhibit dark spots on their leaves. Acid-loving plants are notoriously susceptible to this problem. The good news is that the issue can be resolved using chelated micronutrient fertilizer.

Minimal Pruning

Although ixora doesn't require any pruning, it can always be cut back to alter its size or shape. To reduce the plant's size without altering its natural shape, cut back the oldest and largest stems a few inches from the ground. You should also cut off any branches that have been harmed by cold weather or that grow in awkward locations. To lessen the possibility of a disease spreading from one plant to another, make sure to sterilize your pruning shears with rubbing alcohol or alcohol wipes after each use.


Ixora isn't particularly susceptible to pests or diseases, but it can be infested by aphids or scales, which can lead to the growth of sooty mold on the leaves. Apply insecticidal soap as directed on the package, release natural predators like ladybugs, or use a strong spray from your hose to wash off the tiny green aphids or brown scales. Nematodes may be eating your plant's soil-dwelling roots if you notice wilted leaves or stunted growth in your plant. To deter the bugs, try spreading a thick layer of mulch over the soil.

Maui Red Ixora Propagation by Taking Cuttings

Taking springtime cuttings is the best way to multiply your Ixora Maui red plant.

The most difficult aspect of plant growth is getting ixora cuttings to root. You may need to apply a little heat and use rooting hormone in addition to trying the process with several cuttings to increase the likelihood of success.

You must prevent inserting the cutting directly into the potting mixture after applying the hormone. Make a hole in the mixture using a pen or another cutting that was larger in girth than the hormone-treated cutting. This will lessen the chance of the hormone rubbing off.

After the cutting has been planted, lightly water the soil and cover the pot with a clear plastic bag to create a humid environment. Make sure the soil is moist but not waterlogged by checking on the cuttings frequently to ensure this.

Before the leaves begin to form, your cuttings will require filtered sunlight. Once the leaves have appeared, you can take off the plastic bag and relocate the plant to a spot that receives direct sunlight.


Propagating Ixora With Seeds

Utilizing its seeds, you can attempt to grow Ixora. If you're not used to taking cuttings or don't have access to a plant to take cuttings from, this may be a better option. While you can plant at any time of the year, it is best to do so in the spring. It benefits from the longest growing season prior to winter because of this.

To grow plants from seeds, soak the seed in water for an entire night. Fill a small pot in the morning with a good seed starter mixture; ideally, one that is acidic rather than alkaline. Place the seed gently in your starter soil, give it some water, then wrap it in a plastic bag and place it somewhere with some indirect light. Try to maintain it at 64 degrees or so.

Once you notice the seed starting to sprout, move it to full sunlight. Don't get frustrated if nothing happens after a few days; these seeds can take up to 12 weeks to germinate. It is best to try growing lots of seeds at once because many won't even try to sprout.

The main problem with growing Ixora from seeds is that they aren't readily available in most areas. They might need to be purchased online or from a specialized retailer.

Ixora Varieties

There are several popular varieties of Ixora plants you can choose:

Ixora's most popular variety has scarlet flowers. Other flower colors are also possible, including red, pink, orange, and white, but you will typically need a different variety. When unsure, inquire about the hues of the flowers a plant bears at a nursery or garden center. Choosing a variety based on the flower's color is made simple by doing this.

Low hedges made of dwarf ixora plants are very common. They appear to be extremely compact and have a typical shrub form. When they bloom, they look particularly lovely. However, bear in mind that Dwarf Ixora typically takes some time to bloom once more.

Plant Uses

There are several useful applications for ixora plants. In most places, its main function is as a hedge or outdoor screen. Additionally, some people use it for landscaping or to support foundations. Although you can plant cuttings alone, indoors or outdoors, most people plant at least a few of these in a row when growing outdoors.

If at all possible, make sure the seeds or cuttings you receive are from the same original plants. If not, the colors of the flowers might vary in a distracting way.

Additionally, this plant has some applications in traditional medicine, particularly in Southeast Asia. Ixora-based products have been shown to have anti-neutrophil properties by research. Neutrophils are a class of white blood cell for those who are unfamiliar with the term.

White blood cell inhibition can be used to treat some reactions and disorders, particularly those that are close to the skin, even though we don't want to permanently get rid of them.

Additionally, the plant's parts can act as astringents, appetite stimulants, and all-purpose anti-inflammatory medications.

The tiny fruits can be eaten, too. When ripe, they are about 10mm wide and largely flavorless. If you want to eat or use the berries frequently, you'll need to plant a lot of Ixora because it doesn't produce a lot of berries at once.


Frequently Asked Questions

Does Ixora Need Full Sun?

For the majority of Ixora species, full sun is essential for flower production. If you aren't growing them for the flowers, you can plant them in partially shaded areas. Ixora species with larger leaves are more tolerant of shade than those with smaller leaves.

Does Ixora Grow Quickly?

The answer is no. Ixora grows slowly, so it might take a few years for them to properly intertwine if you plant them together to create a hedge. If given enough time to grow, they can reach impressive heights, but for aesthetic reasons, most people cut them down to about three or four feet.

Dwarf Ixora will grow to their full height more quickly than conventional varieties. However, if you want a lower flowering shrub, you can plant the miniature versions outside. Many people grow dwarf varieties indoors instead of outdoors.

Is Ixora Toxic?

Ixora is not toxic when consumed or prepared in normal doses. Humans, dogs, cats, and the majority of other pets are not typically toxic to it. When ripe, the berries are generally safe and palatable to people.

But like all medicines, if you concentrate its components or take too much at once, it could become toxic. It cannot be determined if this plant can become toxic due to a lack of thorough research on it. The berries should be fine, but before preparing Ixora as medicine, seek the advice of a knowledgeable professional.

How Can I Get Ixora to Bloom More?

Annual pruning of Ixora that carefully avoids the branch tips where new buds are forming results in more blooms. If significant pruning is required, try to complete it at the beginning of spring before the plant begins to add new growth.

Does Ixora Like Coffee Grounds?

If you use coffee grounds to bring the soil's acidity into the desired range, Ixora will enjoy them. Acidity is enhanced with the aid of coffee grounds. Your Ixora should thrive as long as the soil is maintained between 5.5 and 6.5.

Are Ixora Perennials Or Annuals?

They are both, technically. Ixora are perennial plants with year-round blooming capabilities in tropical and subtropical climates. They are superior to rival plants that only flower for a few weeks at most for decorative purposes due to their prolific flower production.

In colder climates, some people do grow them as annuals. In this instance, they flower during the summer and some of the fall and then disappear once winter arrives. Although it takes a little more work, it is still feasible to grow them as annuals.

What's the Best Way to Get Ixora?

Buying a cutting that has been expertly grown is typically the best way to obtain Ixora. Making your own cutting is possible if you follow the earlier instructions in this guide, but getting an established cut is much quicker and simpler than growing it from scratch.

Tropical regions, where ixora is a common decorative plant, have a much wider availability of the species. Large greenhouses might have some on hand, but it's harder to find them in places where they aren't common. You can also ask a plant supplier to order or grow them for you.

Ixora seeds are available online. The seeds can be delicate, and many won't even germinate, so this is inherently risky. Determining whether the seeds are viable takes weeks. If you're willing to take a chance, this is acceptable, but if you want to plant your Ixora as soon as possible, getting an established cutting is much more reliable.

What Does Ixora Smell Like?

Ixora's aroma is generally not too strong. Some people compare it to a mixture of light soap with a hint of citrus. Basically, you don't grow these plants for the scent.

Ixora Odorata, which originated in Madagascar, is an exception to this rule. It smells sweeter and more pungent than other Ixora varieties, as its name might imply. When laying out your garden, keep in mind that the flowers on this variety are always white. Ixora Plants

Final Thoughts

In warm climates that are favorable to it, ixora plants make excellent hedge shrubs. Though slow-growing, its vividly colored flowers and tendency to bloom throughout the year make it an excellent decorative option. It is advantageous on both sides because of its density because it can be used to create privacy.