Kohleria is a genus of about 33 species, along with a number of natural hybrids in the family Gesneriaceae. The genus is distributed from central Mexico into northern South America, but typically not into the Amazon. Plants are summer growers, and in drier or colder habitats may go completely dormant. The storage organ is a scaly rhizome that sometimes can grow into impressive size. Hundreds of impressive hybrids are available currently and more are being made every day. Plants like to have good root room as well as good filtered sunlight to do well. They appreciate moist soils and occasional fertilizers. In winter, keep the rhizomes moist, but not bone-dry nor wet. Some species are cloud forest dwellers and may not go completely dormant in winter.
Kohleria amabilis var. amabilis has beautiful mottled leaves. The photo below was taken by J. Schofield.
Kohleria spicata is a widely distributed species with many forms and thus in the past have been described as many species. It is native to Mexico South to Peru and east to Venezuela. It can grow to an impressive size, with very large rhizomes. There are several forms in cultivation, one of which makes completely green rhizomes, and another makes rosy colored rhizomes. The plant will die down during winter and should be kept dried otherwise they will rot. The photo below was taken by Nhu Nguyen of the flowers from a small plant and the large rhizome from this species.