Updated: June 8, 2022

Cigar plants, also known as Cuphea ignea, are a popular choice for gardeners who want to add a touch of exoticism to their outdoor space. These plants are native to Mexico and Central America and can grow up to 3 feet tall. Their vibrant red and orange flowers make them a standout addition to any garden. However, like all plants, cigar plants need proper care and attention to thrive. One important aspect of caring for cigar plants is fertilization. In this guide, we’ll go over everything you need to know about fertilizing your cigar plant.

Understanding the Nutrient Needs of Cigar Plants

Before you start fertilizing your cigar plant, it’s important to understand its nutrient needs. As with all plants, cigar plants require three main nutrients: nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). Nitrogen is essential for leaf growth, phosphorus is necessary for root development and flower production, and potassium helps with overall plant health and disease resistance.

When it comes to cigar plants, they prefer a slightly acidic soil pH between 5.5 and 6.5. If the soil pH is too high or too low, the plant may not be able to absorb the nutrients it needs even if they are present in the soil.

Choosing the Right Fertilizer

When choosing a fertilizer for your cigar plant, look for one with a balanced NPK ratio. A ratio of 10-10-10 or 20-20-20 is ideal for cigar plants. You can find these fertilizers at your local garden center or online.

It’s important to note that while fertilizers provide essential nutrients, they should not be overused. Overusing fertilizer can actually harm your plant by causing nutrient burn or by promoting excessive leaf growth at the expense of flower production.

When and How to Fertilize Your Cigar Plant

Cigar plants should be fertilized every 4-6 weeks during the growing season, which typically runs from spring to fall. You can use a granular or liquid fertilizer, depending on your preference. If using a granular fertilizer, sprinkle it around the base of the plant and water it in. If using a liquid fertilizer, dilute it according to the instructions on the package and apply it to the soil around the base of the plant.

It’s important not to fertilize your cigar plant during its dormant period, which typically occurs during the winter months. Fertilizing during this time can cause unnecessary stress on the plant.

Other Tips for Caring for Your Cigar Plant

In addition to fertilizing, there are other things you can do to ensure your cigar plant thrives:

  • Water your plant regularly, especially during hot and dry weather.
  • Mulch around the base of the plant to help retain moisture in the soil.
  • Prune your plant regularly to promote bushier growth and more flowers.
  • Avoid planting your cigar plant in an area with strong winds, as they can damage the delicate stems.


Can I use any type of fertilizer on my cigar plant?

It’s best to use a fertilizer with a balanced NPK ratio, such as a 10-10-10 or 20-20-20 fertilizer.

How often should I fertilize my cigar plant?

Cigar plants should be fertilized every 4-6 weeks during the growing season.

Can I fertilize my cigar plant during its dormant period?

No, it’s best to avoid fertilizing your cigar plant during its dormant period, which typically occurs during the winter months.

What else can I do to care for my cigar plant?

In addition to fertilizing, make sure to water your plant regularly, mulch around the base, prune regularly, and avoid planting in a windy area.

In conclusion, fertilizing your cigar plant is essential for its growth and overall health. By understanding its nutrient needs and choosing the right fertilizer, you can help your cigar plant thrive and produce vibrant flowers that will add beauty to your garden.