Definition of calceolaria in US English:



  • A South American plant of the figwort family that is cultivated for its brightly colored slipper- or pouch-shaped flowers.

    Genus Calceolaria, family Scrophulariaceae

    Also called pocketbook plant
    • ‘This is the easiest span but especially interesting for flower lovers who, depending on the season, will see orchids, calceolarias, violets and oxalis.’
    • ‘The show must be seen for the brilliance and no-nonsense artistry of its leading lady, our delightful dame of the calceolarias.’
    • ‘The following are the most common plants affected: roses, chrysanthemums, carnations, lilies, snapdragons, asters, bulb crops, calceolarias, cyclamen, cinerarias, bedding plants, peppers, potatoes, and most foliage plants.’
    • ‘Like the cineraria, calceolaria is an annual, so discard after flowering.’
    • ‘The nursery, shaded by fine old Lucombe Oaks, was famous for its ‘Wonder of the West’ strain of cinerarias, calceolarias, and an extensive rockery.’
    • ‘Sow some half-hardy annuals for use a winter pot plants e.g. calceolarias, schizanthus and cinnerarias.’
    • ‘Some plants like antirrhinums, calceolarias, gazanias and other almost-hardy plants are best grown as cool as possible to encourage branching and prevent lanky growth.’
    • ‘On the way back to the hotel we will stop at the waterfall, one of the best areas for photographing flowers, where depending on the season, we may see orchids, calceolarias, and neneos.’
    • ‘Besides the painted cup there are classed in this group the mullen, the common toad-flax, the foxglove, the gerardias, and the calceolarias.’
    • ‘Lobelia and petunias share the same history as verbenas and calceolarias.’
    • ‘Some special care is requisite in growing these splendid calceolarias in a creditable manner.’
    • ‘In one year, 50,000 scarlet pelargoniums were planted, and in 1854, the collections of calceolarias, lobelias, petunias, verbenas, gaultherias, alyssums, nemophilas, salvias, heliotropes, dwarf rhododendrons and azaleas, displays which influenced exhibitions across the rest of the country.’
    • ‘In zones 15-17, you can also plant calceolaria, cineraria, nemesia, and schizanthus.’
    • ‘Through the 1970s, the archetypal gardener was over 50 and had time and money to spare: a smug matron with impeccable calceolarias, an eccentric rosarian, a spinster growing herbs.’


Late 18th century: modern Latin, from Latin calceolus, diminutive of calceus ‘shoe’.