Help put the Fishnet back in my Fishnet Stockings

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Every year about this time my new Fishnet Stockings coleus starts to lose its net and go green!

Seven years ago I grew Fishnet to full size and it was very netty all season. Ever after nothing I seem to do results in a gorgeous plant with that wonderous netting many of us are drawn to. Could it just be a weak cultivar?

What is your opinion and experience with this 'inconsistant' performer in my garden? Have you gotten the netting back after it has started to go more green? How?

If you are growing Fishnet this year could you post a picture so I can compare with mine? And I would be interested to know where you obtained your plant as I have a theory that some varieties do not take well to 'tissue culture' and are best perpetuated by cuttings.

Thanks, Judy

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Mine never goes green. It simply dies. It has to be the most difficult one for most of us coleus lovers to grow.

Sorry I can't be more helpful, Judy.

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Arlene, that fits in with my 'theory' that it is a weak cultivore. I know it is one of the tissue cultured ones available pretty well market wide (Proven Winners), so maybe the tissue that is being used to clone all those plugs that get grown on by scads of growers is 'defective' Kinda like inbreeding in say, dogs, reduces breed vigor...or the selected for trait dies out in second, third or succeeding generations.

It certainly hasn't been a winner for me and many others!

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Judy, I have the worst luck with the proven winners from the one of the big box stores. My fishnets have gone totally purple instead of netting, and I assumed it was getting too much sun. I moved it to a shadier spot, and it lived through the summer but did not winter well. The only time it has done well for me was when it was perfectly netted when purchased. The wizards did not do so well for us last year either.

Houston Heights, TX(Zone 9a)

Have you tried Rosy Dawn?

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Steadycam3, you find it in Rosy Dawn; I could not.

Houston Heights, TX(Zone 9a)

I saw it there back in February when I placed my order but I noticed later, some things available then were not available say in April. I'll check and get back to you.

edited to say, I checked and they are closed until next year. Catalogue available, December 1st. Maybe check with them early in the season.

This message was edited Jul 2, 2013 11:10 PM

Houston Heights, TX(Zone 9a)

The only time I ever had that one, I got it by nicking a few cuttings from a bed in front of an office!!! I failed to take cuttings so did not have it the following year.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

I passed it by in the nursery this year as it was not nice. Instead I picked up Electric Lime for the same markings but different coloration. I have to say I was disappointed in this year's selections of coleus after multiple visits to my favorite 3 nurseries and visits to my nonfavorite ones as well.

Houston Heights, TX(Zone 9a)

I got electric lime from RD. I also got Mariposa which I really love. I got hot sauce, big red judy, rustic orange, Song bird, jungle love, saturn's rings, trailing strawberry, gold lace. They gave me tapestry as a bonus and it reminds me a little of fishnet stockings. I did not like it until it got a bit bigger. song bird is noticeably slower growing than the others. The RD packing method is ingenious and very impressive.

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Even if Rosy Dawn offers Fishnet, given my own experience and that of others it would not be one I would try again.

Cathy, I have similar experiences with PW and big box. too. Plants that are mass produced to be peak at point and time of sale are not necessarily good garden performers, just good sellers. We are going to end up with a lot of plants that are like those 'tasteless tomatoes' that ship well and have a long shelf life instead of real plants.

We are lucky that some folks kept a few Victorian era coleus going from year to year so we could enjoy the bounty! Thank goodness for Rosy Dawn, Bakers Acres, Atlock and Glasshouse for maintaining a genepool. Wish there were many others. The coleus craze may already be on the decline. Sigh

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I agree with Judy. Even if I saw a good specimen of it I wouldn't buy it. In the end it's just too disappointing.

As we all get older and want less maintenance of flowers it's coleus that brightens our gardens so I think, though there may be fewer coleuses in the future, they will be the most reliable ones. Just the color they provide indoors, through a long winter, is worth growing them. Now I have all of mine outside and will be taking cuttings in September for holding through the next winter.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Arlene, have you taken any cuttings of Kong, and if so, do they perform for you? I am wondering if cuttings start out with a smaller leaf. While my Kong Mosaic is very pretty, I am not so certain it is going to work out.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

No Kongs here, Marcia. They just grow so large and aren't compatible, for me, with other plants. An entire area of them would be spectacular, I'm sure. Just saw some Kongs this morning while buying two really dark new ones.

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Cathy, I also have Kongs on my "Don't perform well for me" list. They go to seed too easily in my long season and are not as condusive to cuttings even taken early on and from smaller leaves.

Other named varieties of coleus are also about ready to be off my list...Saturn, Sedona, Jack of Diamonds, Kiwi Fern, Pineapple......

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Well--somehow I have missed this Thread...again....

My Fishnet Coleus, I got from Judy as a single cutting, has grown well. It is about 6" tall
and 8" wide and has several layers of leaves.
I had it sitting where it gets some sun--but then, when it started turning green, I moved it
into shade.
There were some smaller leaves on top that grew out almost solid deep purple.
At this time--it is making the beginnings of a bloom stem. It is just an itsy bitsy bunch
for now--will see what develops.
Overall--I am pleased with it so far. Not a tall grower--but nice.
Will get a picture tomorrow--it is dark now.

Here's a pictures from June. It is a lot bigger/wider now. Gita

Thumbnail by Gitagal
(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I do wish you the best of luck with yours, Gita. For most of us the word "unreliable" comes to mind when we think of Fishnet Stockings though so many of us do love it and wish it would perform well for us.

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Gita, don't know if others would agree, but pinching out the flowering tip might be a good move since there is a lot of growing season left and coleus pretty well stop 'growing' once they flower. Might have to pinch out the top two leaves as flower bud.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

If you let it go to seed and it becomes old looking, you can still take cuttings for some new little chickadees.

taipei, Taiwan

My Fishnet Stocking grows ugly, too. Its veining does disappear when the temperature gets higher in Taiwan recently. It is the first time for me to purchase this unique coleus from Rosy Dawn. I would like to collect its seeds to make sure whether it can be propagated by seeding successfully.

Thumbnail by Yubiker
Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Yubiker, you'll notice that the consensus is that it is not such a strong strain of plant, so don't be disappointed if it doesn't work out. Your plant looks very nice. We have had experiences with FS that haven't been great. My plant last year had purple veining that did not show up because the entire foliage turned dark purple.

Good luck with yours.

taipei, Taiwan

As I knew before, some cultivars of coleus grow green leaves and lose other colors when the temperature is higher than 30°C in summer. And they regrow colorful foliage when the autumn comes. Maybe the entire foliage turning dark purple as you mentioned about FS is another extremely opposite case.
Next time I will try on Gays Delight.I believe its veining is much more stable than Fishnet Stocking’s.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Gay's Delight is one of my favorite coleuses. It keeps its colors and pattern despite the heat or the cool of autumn. It's a big winner with me.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

I think yours looks good too--if not with a lot of dark netting--it is, otherwise,
healthy looking. Good note on the hot weather. We have VERY hot weather right now.
You will do better taking cuttings in the fall and rooting them in small pots directly into
some pro mix type of soil. I have rooted Coleus cuttings every year--and it is easy.
The only problem is that, 6 months is a bit too long to tend to cuttings, and I had to
re-pinch mine twice and root the pinched off cuttings again. Ended up having just
too many rooting cuttings. Don't think from seed will give you good results.
This year--I have acquired several new varieties and will try to propagate those
and not take up space doing the ones you can, easily, buy in the store.

Judy--I always pinch out the blooms on Coleus. It is odd how many are going into
bloom so early in the season. They are not even full grown--just small plants--but setting bloom.
Must be this crazy, 90 degree heat we are having right now....

Here is my Fishnet Stocking Coleus this morning. Pinched out the bloom.
In the last picture--is it normal for the veins of the leaves to be turning red?

Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal
(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Yours looks good, Gita.

You and I share the same problem of holding rooted cuttings and then having to cut them back and, of course, we keep them as well. I had over a thousand to plant outside in June since May was too unstable weather-wise. I do not want to keep that many over a winter ever again. Still, I did buy two very dark ones to add to the collection!

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Some new ones I have gotten this year are these.

--Careless love
--Carnival (?)
--Inky Fingers --geez! Does this grow big!
-- ??no name
--Red Coleus

Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal
Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

And earlier, I bought a whole HB of these--new to me! Appropriatelly called "Care Free"

Took cuttings off each top, rooted them--and then took the HB apart and planted
them in a round bed. HD had this sale in May--all these asst. HB's were just $4.99

I LOVE these! May the cuttings live long ans prosper!

Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal
(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I believe the Care Free coleus are the series we used to buy from Park's. They really are lovely.

taipei, Taiwan

The Care Free series are very popular in Taiwan, but it is not easy to make their cuttings grow smoothly, probably because they don’t get used to new different substratum. On the contrary, if you use their seeds to develop the plants, they will grow up more successfully.
Here are some photos of my coleus, I think the third(Antique) is most easily identified: the last one with brown leaves is newly grown from seeds,I've never imported this one before,maybe you can tell me what it is.

Thumbnail by Yubiker Thumbnail by Yubiker Thumbnail by Yubiker Thumbnail by Yubiker
Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Yubiker, your plants are lovely. Do you have a cool/winter season in Taiwan?

I don't like it when I buy a plant that has a small tag that says "carefree series" or "colissima series." While in fact I don't know the names of most of the lilies and peonies and I'm not hung up on names, when it comes to coleus, I would like to know if it is a plant I already own. I think the growers tend to be a bit lazy and/or irresponsible about identification. It's like "rainbow mix." When I googled the colissima series, they looked a lot like the "under the sea" collection from hort couture.

taipei, Taiwan

In Taiwan, spring and autumn are more suitable for Coleus cultivating than summer and winter because moderate temperature and good light can bring us most colorful foliage. While in summer, the colors usually disappear, and in winter these plants will grow slower, sometimes they stop growing especially when the temperature drops below 10∘C.
Nevertheless, we don’t worry about overwintering them outdoors because they can survive very well.
I’ve noticed the coleus tagged as “colissima” for a long time although I have not met them yet, but I believe the series is different from the Under the sea series, maybe they are more close to Merlin’s Magic. Unfortunately, they are not included in the plant list made by Rosy Dawn. Is there any available nursery providing these plants in USA?

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

I could not find a US nursery with direct sales for this series. I am certain there are many available but you will not be able to find them by name, so you'll have to just search for coleus and then go through the plants. Unlike Rosy Dawn, You will have to look through nurseries that distribute many different types of plants. Just when I'm looking for something else, I seem to find a plant that I thought was unavailable.

The growers stick in simple, little tags and distribute them all over: small nurseries, supermarkets, etc. I'll have to take some photos.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Here is mu Fishnet Coleus as of today--July, 29.
Growing great--but all green, of course...tha is a 9" or 10" pot.

Then--here is my Inky Fingers today--starting to look like a bush.

Thumbnail by Gitagal Thumbnail by Gitagal
taipei, Taiwan

It seems that your local nurseries’ coleus plants are quite different from ours; some of them are rare in our market. Maybe next time I will consider to import Inky Fingers, since I see a lot of people use it so frequently.
Now I am trying to place orders to Glasshouse Works, but their response seems very slow, I am not sure whether their plants will be good enough for importing overseas.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)


Inky Fingers grew this big from two leggy, little plants I got at the Swap
on May 19th of this year.
Will post a better picture of it...

The Fishnet Stocking Coleus started as ONE small cutting from someone
end of May.

Here--this looks better....can you see WHY it is caalled "Inky Fingers"?
Looks like a palm with fingers....

Thumbnail by Gitagal
Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

My 'Fishnet Stockings' is very vigorous also, and I really like it, but like Gita's it has turned quite green... still has a little veining and some color on the stems and edges of the leaves, though, and it's pretty... but not that striking "fishnet" effect I expected from it.

They were using it all over at Philly again this year... maybe it "nets" just fine in cooler greenhouse conditions?

taipei, Taiwan

Gitagal, your Inky Fingers looks beautiful! I think it will be a great idea if we can plant it with India Frills or Purple Duckfoots, while I have not seen it in our market yet.
The plant of Carnival you mentioned was not available in the 2013 catalogue made by Rosy Dawn, so I couldn’t import it. I prefer this beautiful plant to Mardi Gras although they look very similar to each other.

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