What you need to know about a flower
Calathea is a plant of the second tier of the tropical forest and belongs to the Marantovs. The leaves of the calathea are oval and elliptical in length up to 30 cm. They are velvety and glossy, the back part always has red shades in color. You can endlessly admire the complex pattern of the leaf plate.
Leaves grow on the stem, but it is short, internodes are millimeters apart, it seems that the rosette grows out of the ground. The length of the leaf petioles varies. Surprisingly, the flower loves classical music and cannot stand the swing of tobacco - an esthete!
Improper caring for calathea at home will destroy the plant.
In the care it is necessary to carry out procedures with knowledge of the nature of the "Prayer Flower". So, the flower is called prayer for the fact that it lifts the leaves higher and higher at sunset. In the morning, the plates are in a horizontal position.
The reaction to improper care will be a change in the color of the leaves, their drooping, the appearance of various spots, and drying out of the edges. In another way, it is called the loss of decorativeness.
How to care for calathea at home
You need to choose a flower depending on the ability to create acceptable conditions for its maintenance. Each variety requires the use of special care operations that are appropriate for this particular plant. The flowering varieties of calathea are considered the most demanding. The most unpretentious flower is Kalathea Makoyan, shown in the photo. Home care is easier for him than for other types.
Step by step, we will analyze how to care for a capricious plant.
The total daylight hours for Calathea, regardless of location, is 15-16 hours. This can be a shaded area near the south window or supplementary lighting when placed on the north side. It is necessary to focus on the color of the leaves. With a lack of light, the leaves are pale, with an excess, they become smaller and curl up into a tube. If measures are not taken, then after turning pale, the leaves will dry out and fall off.
The photo shows how saffron calathea blooms with proper care at home, if the winter regulation of the lighting duration is observed. The flower is encouraged to bloom by creating an adjustable length of day by covering it with opaque material from 6 pm to 8 am.
When the rudiments of peduncles appear, the plant is introduced into the usual light regime.
Watering and microclimate
All varieties of calathea are watered only with soft, settled water with a temperature 2-3 degrees above room temperature. When watering, you need to focus on the condition of the plant. If the leaves begin to lose turgor, stop moistening, dry the soil 2-3 cm deep into the soil and wait for the results. If the leaves do not rise, caring for the calathea requires replacing the soil and removing rotten roots.
To soften the irrigation water, throw two handfuls of peat into a bucket of tap water, stir and leave overnight. The filtered water will contain less calcium and magnesium.
The frequency of watering calathea - as the clod of earth and the type of leaves dries up. In hot weather, 3 times a week, in winter only once, checking the humidity of the coma.
Demanding on the microclimate, calathea does not like rough wetting of the leaves. Velvet leaves should not be sprayed on; other varieties are foggy. Drops leave unsightly stains after drying. Therefore, it is impossible to create 50-70% humidity in an apartment with central heating. At home, caring for calathea is associated with the use of special methods of air humidification.
If you pour pebbles, small cobblestones into a deep pan on which a pot of calathea is installed, and cover it with sphagnum moss on top, then the water in the pan will evaporate evenly. A special layer of air is created around the plant. But here it is impossible to allow the bottom of the pot to come into contact with water, the roots will rot.
Evaporation from a wide plate of hot water will be less radical. You can use the neighborhood with large flowers, like the shade of tropical trees. Once or twice in the daytime around the bush it is necessary to make a fine spray from a spray bottle. Glossy leaves are wiped with a damp cloth.
In caring for calathea, a balance is constantly observed between excess and deficiency, and one should walk along a sharp ridge.
Soil, transplant and temperature of the content
Regardless of the time of year, the temperature regime should be 18-24 degrees, regardless of the season. At the same time, a sharp change in temperature and a draft can lead to the death of calathea.
Soil selection is one of the requirements for how to properly care for calathea. Considering that the roots of the plant are superficial, grow in breadth, you need to select the appropriate pots. In a deep bucket, a larger drainage layer is created so that the soil below does not sour.
The substrate is bought ready for calathea or saintpaulia, but adding coarse sand. You can take the composition yourself:
- leaf humus - 6 parts,
- peat - 3 parts,
- sand - 1 part.
The composition of the soil should be slightly acidic, pH 6.
How to care for a calathea flower as it grows? A transplant will be required, by carefully dividing the rhizome when planting. Moreover, each section must have a flower bud.
Usually the bush is divided in two, cutting with a sharp knife and disinfecting the fresh cut. After the plant has been planted, it needs to be covered, to create a microclimate near the leaves, but with ventilation. After new leaves begin to appear, remove the shelter. It is important that the temperature at this time is about 25 0 С, and the plant is in the shade.
Fertilizing and pruning calathea
When caring for calathea at home, only flowering ornamental plants are fed. For them, a composition of soluble fertilizers is chosen, in which there is an insignificant nitrogen content and there are no traces of calcium. Typically, such formulations are sold for the care of indoor flowers.
The peculiarity of kalata is that their roots secrete substances that change the composition of the soil and its acidity. The best feeding will be the timely renewal of the substrate. For young plants, transplantation is carried out annually. After four years, the adult plant is transplanted every two years.
To begin with, you can grow a beautiful calathea in a florarium, a tall vessel with transparent walls. So, it is easier to maintain a microclimate.
Description of Coleus
The homeland of Coleus is tropical regions, it grows in Asian and African forests. Locals use some of its wild species for food. In nature, it is an annual or perennial plant, most often it is a shrub up to 50 cm. The most important value is leaves of any color with a variety of patterns. They can have edging, various dots, various spots, stripes and matte white patterns. Varieties with several contrasting shades are very beautiful. The flowers are small and inconspicuous.
Coleus has several household names or nicknames: "nettles" and "poor man's croton". I got them for the individual shape and color of the leaves, which is especially appreciated by flower growers.
This is an undemanding and refined, wonderful and original plant that delights amateurs with a variety of colors. Feels great indoors and outdoors. It goes through a change of scenery well, is unpretentious in content and grows rapidly. Most often, polyhybrid species are planted.
Types and varieties of coleus
The mixed colors in the leaves gave direction to breeders who focused their efforts on obtaining unfamiliar varieties and species. Plants were bred with beautiful ornaments and a varied combination of shades. All the varieties obtained can make up a whole catalog, their main difference is in color. Only a few of them gained popularity.
The most common type. The basis for breeding many varieties. A semi-shrub up to 80 cm has a ribbed stem, and the leaves are shaped like an egg with a sharp top and large denticles along the edge, slightly lowered. About 200 hybrids have been bred with many variations of colors and patterns.
It includes varieties:
- Wizard - used in landscape design for border decoration. Its tiny size allows it to be planted in flowerpots and pots. About 35 cm. Not afraid of temporary drought and prolonged exposure to sunlight. Low light conditions result in a decrease in red color.
- The black dragon is the most decorative variety due to its deep red or black hue. A lush bush with a convex leaf and arched contours. Height 25-30 cm. Likes good watering, feeding and diffused light. Many signs and superstitions are associated with him.
- Henna is a golden dusting on top, and a dark red underneath.
The ampelous species has long, curly stems up to 50 cm long, slightly drooping. Velvety heart-shaped leaves with wavy red edges. Pale green edging and purple streaks are present. Popular varieties:
- lemon and red Brilliant,
- wavy Butterfly,
- raspberry burgundy Crimson Ruffles.
The species is popular in home floriculture. Can grow in the garden. Height up to 1 m. Elongated oval-shaped leaves have jagged edges and change color according to the amount of light received. The shaded area is green, high illumination is burgundy.
- Fantasy - twisted leaves
- Weasleys are green with a touch of burgundy.
The most compact version (up to 30 cm) with stems hanging down and elongated leaves, most often of a red hue. It has several varieties that differ in shape and color:
- cut and crimped at Firebird,
- folded at The Chief,
- yellow Golden Bedder,
- burgundy Volcano.
A low-growing bush that looks like a mint in appearance. Nice green color. Often used for medical purposes.
Lying stems allow you to give any shape to a lush shrub. Bright color of elongated leaves in the form of a heart. Refers to the ampelous type.
Calliandra is a genus of plants that includes herbaceous perennials, shrubs and trees belonging to the legume family. Their homeland is South America - in the wild, they are ubiquitous in Bolivia. Calliandra is popular among flower growers due to its spectacular appearance and the ability to bloom at any time of the year for a fairly long period. Subject to the necessary care recommendations, this attractive compact plant can delight its owner for many years.
Despite the fact that among calliandras there are trees up to 6 m in height, herbaceous perennials are mainly used in floriculture, the height of which, on average, is about 1 m.There are shrub varieties with a height of about 2 m.
Decorativeness is characteristic not only of calliandra flowers, but also of its foliage. The leaves of this plant are usually pinnate and include smaller green lanceolate leaves in pairs. Young leaves are characterized by the presence of a copper shade in the color. During the flowering period, which can last from 2 to 3 months, flowers bloom - red, white or bright pink. They form inflorescences of a cylindrical or spherical shape, the diameter of which is 8 cm. A feature of calliandra flowers is the presence of a large number of long and thin stamens, creating the effect of a fluffy panicle.
Calliander: growing and care
Caring for a calliander plant directly affects its flowering - if the necessary recommendations are not followed, it may not occur at all. This culture belongs to light-loving and moisture-loving plants, besides, it has certain requirements for the temperature regime. Also, an important condition for the successful cultivation of calliandra is its regular pruning, which allows you to maintain a compact and attractive appearance of the plant. In late winter or early spring, the longest shoots should be shortened - calliandra successfully tolerates this procedure, with which it can be shaped into a bonsai.
- Temperature regime
The optimal temperature for a comfortable stay of calliandra at home is about 21 degrees. As in the case with other southern plants, it will not be superfluous to take care of the daily temperature drops - it is desirable that the thermometer shows 13-15 degrees Celsius at night. Since it is rather difficult to achieve this in a room, it is recommended to take out the pot with calliander to an open balcony at night.
- Lighting mode
Despite the delicate fuzz crowning the calliandra inflorescences, one should not be afraid of harm from direct sunlight. It is important to choose the time when they will illuminate the plant wisely: it is better if this happens in the morning or evening hours. The duration of sunbathing in summer is from 3 to 4 hours, in autumn and winter it is equal to the duration of daylight hours. The calliandra plant loves sunlight, so in winter, its owners will not be able to do without additional lighting sources.
- Soil composition
Calliander flower loves slightly acidic soils - both nutritious and poor. The substrate for its cultivation can be prepared independently by mixing peat with coarse river sand and perlite. Loose components will make the soil looser and at the same time play the role of drainage.
In the spring and summer, it is recommended to feed the calliandra plant every half month with liquid fertilizers diluted to half the concentration.
- Air humidification
A high degree of air humidity is very important for the successful cultivation of calliandra. Dry indoor air during the heating season can cause this southern plant to feel unwell. Therefore, it is necessary to take care of air humidification. The easiest way is to place the calliandra pot on a tray filled with wet pebbles. Also, regular spraying with well-settled water at room temperature has a beneficial effect on the state of the foliage of the plant. The ideal habitat for calliandra can be created with a humidifier.
- Watering mode
In the spring-summer period, watering should be frequent and abundant - the earth in the pot with calliandra should not dry out. With the arrival of autumn, the frequency and volume of irrigation can be reduced, however, the soil should still not dry out in the intervals between them.
- Transplant recommendations
Due to its rapid growth, the calliandra flower needs to be transplanted annually into a larger container, since the lack of space for the root system will reduce the rate of development of the plant. Transplanting should be done very carefully, since the roots of calliandra do not penetrate too deep into the ground and are easily damaged. For adult plants that do not grow as vigorously as young ones, periodic replacement of the soil with fresh one will be enough. To do this, it is enough to remove 5-6 cm of the top layer of the earth from the pot and pour fresh soil mixture in its place.
- Reproduction methods
The best way to propagate a calliandra plant is by cuttings. To do this, at the beginning of summer, shoots with a length of 15 cm are cut from the top of the bush. It is necessary to cut off the lower leaves from them and place them in a powder growth stimulator of the root system. Then the cutting can be transplanted into a nutrient mixture consisting of moistened peat and sand.Future seedlings should be covered with a plastic or glass cover and placed in a warm room, protected from direct sunlight. Pretty soon, the cuttings will form an independent root system and will be ready to be transplanted to a permanent place without shelter.
Protection against diseases and pests
There are several fairly common ailments affecting calliandra. All of them are the result of non-compliance with the recommendations for caring for her.
- If flowering does not begin for a long time, the lighting mode should be adjusted - the calliander clearly needs sunlight.
- Yellowing of the foliage signals the stagnation of moisture in the soil - the number and volume of irrigation should be reduced.
- Dry and shriveled leaves are a sign of too dry air in the room where the calliander flower is located - it is necessary to increase the humidity of the air.
- Among harmful insects, aphids, mealybugs and red spider mites are dangerous to the calliander plant. You can get rid of them with the help of insecticides.