Heliconia’s belong to the family of Bananas and are grown for their beautiful, brilliant colourful bracts. Unusual flower heads rise from clumps of banana like leaves, sometimes very large or slender. Their height varies from as small as 40cm to over 5 mts in height depending on variety. Their colourful bracts may be erect, pendulous or spiralling with bracts in the shape of birds beaks, lobster claws or fan shaped and colours of red, pinks, golds, oranges and splashes of a mixture of colours. Some Heliconias are an excellent choice for container plants where some varieties can be grown in full sun and others only in part shade.
Average temperatures should be at least 20 degrees Celsius, some varieties are much hardier and can take cooler temperatures. They require bright light, well drained rich soils and are heavy feeders of any well balanced fertiliser.