Sophora Prostrata 'Little Baby' Planting Instructions

Sophora prostrata 'Little Baby' is a small semi-evergreen shrub native to New Zealand. It features zigzagging growth, small leaves, and yellow-orange barbed flowers in the spring. Grows 3 to 4 feet tall and 3 foot wide in USDA zones 8 to 11. It is hardy to mild frost, but should be grown in a container in  colder areas. Ideal for a greenhouse or cool conservatory in the winter and moved outside in warmer months.

These plants have been under 50 shade in summer.

Full sun in winter in Northern climates and 20% shade in winter in Southern climates.

40% - 60% humidity. Growing temperatures have varied from 40 degrees to 95 degrees. A temperature that varies 10 to 20 degrees is better than a constant temperature. 

Sophora prostrata Little Baby Planting and Care Instructions

 Sophora prostrata Little Baby plants are very intolerant to excessive water while they are dormant in cool winter months, while they are not actively growing. They can be killed easily if watered too often. During the warmer spring and summer months, while the plant is actively growing, plants need to be kept moist.

Afternoon shade is beneficial in summer months. Avoid areas of excessive trapped heat. Do not over water.

Will grow outside in USDA zones 7,8, or 9.  Can be grown as a house plant, if indoor humidity is 30 - 50%, and light is bright enough. If growing inside a building, a North facing window is approximately 75% shade and most well lit interior rooms are 80% shade.  This is not enough light. Furnaces and wood stove tend to drop humidity to 10% or less, which is too dry.


Don't Kill your Plants with the Wrong Potting Soil or Fertilizer!

Avoid potting mixes that are too heavy on compost and peat moss (10% each is ideal). Pumice, perlite, lava, or coarse/medium bark will be the majority of the potting mix. These plants need good drainage.

Do not use Big Box or Chain Store potting mixes meant for vegetables, annual flowers, or house plants, or you will kill your plants with root rot. Even the name brand potting mixes advertised on TV will kill your plants, they are not designed for any plant, shrub or tree that is not an annual. Do not use any potting mixes that use water gel moisture control.

Fertilizer needs to be low salt. Chemical fertilizers should say on the label "for container growing". Do not use 10/10/10 or 16/16/16 and similar fertilizers as they are high salt and will burn your plants. Organic fertilizers like fish, alfalfa, bat guano, kelp, bone meal, and rock phosphate are okay, just keep the nutrients balanced, and watch the nutrient level so you do not add too much or too little. Do not use "hot organics" like blood meal or fresh chicken manure under 1 year aged. 

  • Can be kept in original pots for 3 to 6 months or planted in a well draining soil mix that contains:
    • 25% 3/8" - 1/32" pumice
    • 40% medium/course fir bark
    • 15% perlite
    • 20% of peat moss or compost
    • DO NOT USE WATER GEL or Turface.
  • In the growing season keep the plant moist but not saturated.
  • While the plant is dormant, water it very little. If plants are in areas under 50 degrees F, consider them dormant even if they have leaves.
  • Use fertilizer designed for container growing if the plant is in a container.
  • Full early morning sun or filtered light is okay, but keep out of full afternoon sun until the plant is several years old. As the plant grows it can be moved to areas of fuller sun. Avoid areas of trapped heat on the South or West outside of buildings..
  • If too little light, too much water, or low fertility leaves will turn yellow.
  • New growth is light green. Mature growth is dark green.
  • Young plants with too much sun or too dry in summer - leaves can dry out and die off in sections.
  • Plant is semi-evergreen, so some leaves will fall off in low light and in cool Fall/Winter temps.


 © Scenic Hill Farm Nursery, 2020

Scenic Hill Farm  Nursery, 2820 NW Scenic Drive Albany, Oregon 97321