This section is from the book "The Gardener V1", by William Thomson. Also available from Amazon: The New Organic Grower: A Master's Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener.
A very pretty greenhouse plant, not nearly so generally cultivated as it deserves to "be. It is a compact-growing plant, that may easily, by means of pinching alone, be formed into a handsome specimen. It flowers freely in a large or small state, but is most effective when grown to full specimen size, say about 3 feet by 3 feet. When grown in peat, or in a compost in which peat forms the largest portion, its foliage, which is one of its finest features, is rarely so good as when loam is the principal component in the soil. In light, turfy, rich loam, the plant grows very vigorous and compact, and both the foliage and flowers are finer tinted and better developed than in peat, in which it is very often grown. The drainage should be good; the plant requires ample supplies of water in the growing season, but cannot endure stagnation. It flowers in early summer, and, when a shift is necessary, it should be given soon after flowering is over, so as to enable it to make vigorous growth and preparation for next season's flowering. A good exposure to light in autumn is of essential importance to the thorough ripening of the wood, on which the quality and profusion of the flowers depend; but during the growing season it is better to be shaded lightly from bright sunshine.
The leaves are in whorls of three, oblong, roughly serrated, leathery, light green, with a bronze tint on the upper surface, and somewhat glaucous below. The flowers are creamy-white, tinged with rose, in whorled spikes. It is easily propagated by cuttings of partially-ripened wood, in very sandy soil, in a cool propagating house. They should not be hurried in rooting by being put into heat; even if they succeed in forming roots, they never make a healthy start, and too often die. The plant was formerly included in the genus Weinmannia, but was separated from it by Bentham, and left little or nothing behind of horticultural interest under its former name.