Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Nematanthus longipes DC.

Frost-tender, evergreen, low-climbing shrub, with fleshy, ovate leaves, to 15cm long, and 1-3 deep scarlet flowers, spotted inside with dark red, produced in the leaf axils in almost continuous succession.  To 60cm.  [RHSD, Hortus].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘The Royal Botanic Gardens of Kew are indebted to Messrs. Rollinsons of Tooting for the possession of this truly beautiful plant.  It seems to have been introduced from Brazil to Paris, and probably by the late lamented M. Guillemin, to the Jardin des Plantes, whence it was sent to Messrs. Rollinsons by Mr. Neumann of that establishment.  Our young plant soon flowered in the winter, December and January of last year, and again it is in high beauty in the present month of May.  It is a climber, thriving well in the moist heat of our Orchideous house, and makes a most handsome appearance, if trained about the wire trellices which are now so commonly and so successfully attached to the pots which contain climbing plants.  It has been found by Mr. Gardner in woods of the Corcovado, Brazil.’  [BM t.4018/1843]. Gard. Chron. 1843.  MB p.263/1842.  MB p.5/1843.

History at Camden Park

Listed only in the 1857 catalogue [T.336/1857].


Published Aug 28, 2009 - 04:52 PM | Last updated Jul 21, 2010 - 04:37 PM

Shown is a climber with ovate leaves and scarlet flowers, spotted inside with dark red.  Paxton's Magazine of Botany p.26, 1842.

Nematanthus longipes DC. | MB p.263/1842 as Columnea splendens

Family Gesneriaceae
Region of origin

South America

  • Columnea splendens Pax.
  • Columnea grandiflora Hort.
  • Nematanthus crassifolium (Schott.) Wiehler
  • Besleria crassifolia Schott
Common Name
Name in the Camden Park Record

Columnea splendens 

Confidence level high