Hamedorea elegans: how to care at home
Indoor palm trees have always been highly appreciated by gardeners, because they fit perfectly into any interior and are relatively unpretentious in care. This statement is true for the Chamedorea elegans. To get acquainted with the requirements for the placement of this palm, the features of its reproduction and further care at home, this review will help.
Botanical description of the plant
"Hamedorea elegans" is not the only name for this palm. Information about it can also be found in the description of the nianta of graceful, reed and bamboo palm trees, and a colliny elegant. All these names designate the same low plant, which came to us from the tropical forests of Guatemala and Mexico.
Young specimens have a thin green trunk, but with age its color changes - it becomes chestnut. In a natural habitat, a tree can grow up to 2 m, but when grown at home, its height rarely exceeds 1.5 m. Dark green complex palm leaves are thin, cirrus (usually no more than 7-8 in the crown).
Each such leaf forms a rosette with smaller sheets assembled in pairs on the petiole. The flowers that appear during flowering are yellow, small and fragrant, form a panicle. A little later, berries take their place, no more than the size of peas. All of them have only one seed.
At home, for the formation of fruits, the plant is pollinated manually. Hamedorea refers to shrub plants with many shoots emerging from a creeping trunk. All of them have one growth point and do not branch.
Did you know? The described palm tree got its name because of the low growth and affordable height of the fruit. Translated from Greek, “chamai” means “ low, ” and “dorea” means “ gift . ”
Benefit and harm
Like all palm trees, the slender chamedorea elegans performs a cleaning function in the house, cleansing the air of harmful impurities: formaldehyde, ammonia, xylene and benzene. Increases humidity, making other indoor flowers feel much better. This plant cannot be called poisonous — it is completely safe for humans and for any pets.
Regardless of the type of room, chamedorea will always be attractive, and it does not matter: you only grow it or create a composition from several indoor flowers at once.
House growing conditions
The temperature, lighting and humidity in the room play a paramount role in the successful cultivation of any tropical plant, so before buying a hamedorea, this issue should be given due attention.
Important! To prevent plant symmetry, once every 2 weeks, rotate the plant 180 ° around the axis.
Placement and lighting
Often, palm trees become one of the key elements in the interior design of a house or apartment. When choosing a place to place a flower pot, you should give preference to slightly shaded areas, without exposure to direct sunlight. The ideal solution in this case would be areas near the eastern, western or even northern windows.
The optimal temperature indicators for growing chamedorea directly depend on the season. So, in the summer, values within + 20 ... + 23 ° С are considered acceptable, and in winter they should not fall below +13 ° С. During the growing season, it is desirable to maintain a temperature of + 16 ... + 22 ° C, and if for some reason these figures are higher, you will have to increase the humidity and increase the intensity of watering.
Important! When wiping leaves, never use detergents.
It is worth paying attention to the temperature of the soil during winter dormancy. With a decrease in indicators to + 15 ° C and below, the palm starts to hurt (which is expressed in curling leaves). Sharp temperature fluctuations or periodic exposure to drafts can also trigger problems, so it is not recommended to open windows next to this tropical plant in the cold season.
Like all representatives of the tropics, Chamedorea elegans prefers high humidity (over 65–70%). However, in urban conditions, achieving this indicator can be very difficult, so gardeners should be patient and from time to time moisturize the leaves of the plant on their own, wiping them with a napkin dipped in warm water.
Arranging suitable growing conditions is not the only thing worth paying attention to to ensure the good health of chamedorea. The plant also needs proper care, including timely watering, top dressing, pruning and transplanting.
Important! It is impossible to dig chamedorea into the soil. The soil level after transplantation should coincide with the soil level before the procedure.
For tropical plants, drying out the soil is unacceptable, however, excessive moisture can lead to rotting of the root system, which in some cases can destroy the palm tree. To prevent this from happening, you need to put the pot with the plant in a container with wet pebbles or moss, periodically moistening them. In the summer period, the regularity of applying liquid to the soil should be at least 1 time in 2 days (with additional spraying of leaves).
It is advisable to feed this type of palm only during the period of its intensive growth - from mid-spring to autumn. For this purpose, once every 2 weeks it is appropriate to water the soil with complex mineral compounds (these can be Agricole, Scotts Everis, Pocon) or special concentrates like the Palma preparation. In winter, fertilizers are either canceled altogether, or they are applied to the soil only once a month, because during dormancy the plant does not need a large amount of nutrients.
Find out how and how to feed indoor plants at home.
Chamedorea elegans has only one point of growth of shoots that are not branched. This means that by trimming the upper part, you will stop the growth of the plant, and eventually it will die. Therefore, forming cutting is not used in this case.
A palm transplant is performed in several cases: shortly after purchase (if you need to replace the shipping container with a permanent pot), when the root system decays (this happens due to frequent and excessive watering) and in a planned manner (about 1 time in 2-4 years when the roots of Chamedorea are already breaking out of the drainage holes of the old pot).
Planting capacity change is usually carried out in April – March, after the plant is fully awakened. But an unscheduled transplant is possible in the autumn, after providing the palm with all the necessary conditions for recovery. Between planned transplants, it is advisable to change the top soil layer several times.
The following actions are performed according to the standard plan:
- Pour a little soil into the new pot (directly on top of the drainage layer), leaving room for the old earthen coma.
- Using the transshipment method, remove the palm from the old container and, cutting the spoiled roots (if any), place together with the earthen lump in a new pot.
- Pour the prepared substrate, leaving at least 1 cm of free space to the edge of the container. Water the plant.
- Place it in a well-lit and warm place for better adaptation to new conditions.
Video: how to transplant Hamedorea elegans
The propagation of chamedorea elegans is often performed by the seed method or by the method of root layers. In some cases, the separated part of the bush can be used as planting material. Each of the options has its own characteristics and nuances.
When grown indoors, the root of the palm rarely grows to a length sufficient to perform the division procedure. This is the main reason for the rare use of this method of reproduction. Large and overgrown chamedorea tolerate such reproduction. The main thing is to use only a sharp and well-sanitized knife for cutting. Sometimes plants bought in the store are also subject to separation (in order to increase the decorativeness of a bush growing in a pot, sellers often plant several palm trees in one container at once).
Did you know? Palm trees are long-lived plants that live in natural conditions for hundreds of years. For example, the trees of the most famous coconut variety often overcome the five hundred-year milestone.
The division procedure is relatively simple: after removing the plant from the old pot, the grower needs to carefully cut the connecting roots closer to the center of the plant, and then plant both parts in separate pots. All slices sprinkled with crushed charcoal. If the bush turned out to be very large, with an overgrown strong root system, then it can be divided not into 2, but into 3 or more parts.
The propagation of chamedorea with root layers is much like the previous method, only in this case you have to wait until the processes have several own roots. It is impossible to break off the layering - they are always carefully cut with a knife, and then planted in a peat-sand mixture for further rooting. This process takes an average of about 4 months, after which the established plants can be planted in a permanent pot. As in the previous case, it is advisable to perform the procedure in the spring, before the active growth of the palm begins.
The seed method of propagation of Chamedorea elegans is the most time-consuming of all those listed and will require not only certain skills from the grower, but also considerable patience. Difficulties begin already at the stage of purchase of seed material, because it is far from always possible to be sure of the quality of the finished product and its further germination. To increase the chances of success, some gardeners decide to independently prepare seeds during flowering, performing cross-pollination of flowers of an existing plant. If everything is done correctly, then soon fruits will appear - with seeds ideally suited for further germination.
Read more about how and when to plant indoor plants.
Regardless of how exactly you received the seed, before sowing, it must undergo pre-treatment in solution to stimulate growth. Usually it is soaked for no more than 5–6 days, then it is dried a little and planted in seedlings (one seed for each container). It is advisable to place the glasses covered with polyethylene in the most warm place, leaving them there for 2–5 months. All this time, the soil in the cups needs to be moistened periodically, avoiding any drafts. You can transplant young plants into a permanent pot when the first leaf of seedlings reaches a length of 4 cm.
All tropical plants when grown in the middle strip are distinguished by increased demanding care. Therefore, it is not surprising that the slightest violations can adversely affect health, and therefore the appearance of a palm tree.
The most common problems of flower growers in this case include:
- Yellowing and drying of the tips of the sheet plates, which is most often associated with dry air in the room. Try to cut off damaged parts and increase humidity.
- Decay of leaves at the level of the soil line. The cause of the problem is also in violation of the rules of care, only this time the humidity and regularity of watering should not be increased, but, on the contrary, reduced. Do not forget to make sure the temperature conditions are optimal for the plant, because in a cold room the leaves will not be able to dry quickly.
- The appearance of yellow spots on the leaves is a frequent result of prolonged exposure to direct sunlight. Find a new place for palm trees. It is likely that soon her appearance will return to normal.
- Withering and twisting of leaf plates. The cause of this problem often lies in the heat. The plant is very hot and should be moved to a cooler room.
- Slowing the growth of green mass. If the leaves grow very slowly and the palm tree looks bare, it may be lacking in nutrients, or the temperature in the room is too low (this is often observed in winter).
- The appearance of brown spots on the leaves is sometimes found with a sharp change in temperature, as a result of drafts. Take the plant to a more secure place.
- Drying of young leaves is the result of decay of the root system of the plant, due to an excess of soil moisture. If this is true, then the further viability of the palm will depend on the degree of damage to its root.
It should not be excluded from possible problems that the palm tree is affected by diseases and pests, among which the spider mite, aphids, scale insects and mealybugs, which often cause a change in the color of leaves, the appearance of characteristic cobwebs and spots, are especially active. In this case, only specially developed chemical compounds (for example, Actellik) will help to solve the problem.
As for possible ailments, the fungal infections that cause yellowing and falling of leaves, rotting of the root system are often overwhelmed with chamedorea elegans. With partial infection, fungicidal preparations ("Khometsin" or "Kuprozan") and plant transplantation into a new substrate will help to relieve the palm of the fungus. If the fungus damaged most of the rhizome, then the palm can no longer be saved.
Omens and superstition
All popular beliefs associated with the chamedorea elegans are based on its energetic activity. Many gardeners believe that in a house where this palm grows, conflict situations occur much less often, and all households are more cheerful and cheerful. The calming effect of the plant is also useful at the workplace (it does not matter if this is an office or a production room).