Planting gloxinia and caring for it at home
Gloxinia is one of the brightest and most elegant flowers with a pleasant aroma, rich in a variety of colors: that is why the plant often becomes a real decoration of the living room. To grow this indoor flower in the house is not difficult, but for this it is necessary to create optimal conditions for it, as well as an appropriate microclimate. This article will help every gardener to successfully grow gloxinia, as well as ensure its safe reproduction.
Gloxinia often reproduces during the warm season. At this time, daylight must necessarily form with intense solar radiation for at least 10 hours a day. That is why, depending on the climatic characteristics of the growing region, a flower is planted from late February to late May. When planting gloxinia, it should also be taken into account that in the case of propagation by parts of the plant at the time of planting, the flower must necessarily go through the period of winter hibernation, otherwise it will die when rooted in the ground.
Did you know? Gloxinia got its name in honor of the German botanist Peter Gloxin, who first discovered this plant in Brazil in 1785 .
Preparation for landing
Before starting flower cultivation, every gardener must carefully prepare for the process: this measure provides for the choice of capacity, as well as the right soil. In addition, before planting the plant, it is imperative to take care of the appropriate microclimate, since adverse conditions can not only inhibit the growth of the flower, but also lead to its death.
Ensuring optimal conditions
Gloxinia is most demanding for lighting - for successful growth, it necessarily requires a sunny day for at least 14 hours. In this case, direct sunlight causes burns of the delicate tissues of the plant, so the plant is kept in partial shade. Until the end of spring, young flowers are kept on the southern windowsill: the most optimal partial shade conditions are created here.
Subsequently, the flowers are transferred to windows located in the southeast or southwest. In this case, the plant will receive uniform and smooth lighting. It is not recommended to equip gloxinia on window sills in the northern part of the house, as this will lead to uneven lighting of flowerpots and stretching of its stems. Important! In order to preserve the correct shape of the bush, flowerpots must be turned - at least 1 time per week. The flower is thermophilic, therefore, an appropriate temperature regime should also be created for it. The minimum temperature in the zone of its cultivation should not fall below + 20 ° C, otherwise the flower will hurt. It is best to grow gloxinia at a temperature of +22 ... + 25 ° C: in this case, it will bloom profusely and quickly grow green mass. He loves gloxinia and moisture, so the soil is watered regularly, in large portions, since drying of the substrate inhibits the metabolism of the plant. For irrigation use purified and settled water.
Most beginner gardeners are wondering in which pot gloxinia should be planted. To do this, use any garden containers prepared both from natural (ceramic, glass, metal, wood), and from artificial materials. Most often they are small flowerpots, cups or general containers. At the same time, it is imperative to ensure that such a container has a drainage hole, since stagnation of moisture is detrimental to the plant.
Read about how to plant indoor flowers in a pot.
When choosing a pot, most attention should be paid to its size. The ideal capacity in diameter should be 4–5 cm larger than the planting material, but not more than 9 cm. At the same time, its height should cover the entire underground part of the plant without damage, and also allow the creation of a 3-4 cm thick drainage layer.
Consider the land in which gloxinia should be planted. A light, well-fertilized soil with low moisture capacity is suitable for these purposes. Therefore, when planting, they use special floral substrates diluted with river sand (2: 1), or home-made soils consisting of a mixture of leafy soil, deoxidized peat and river sand (2: 2: 1).
Soil preparation begins 10-14 days before the flower propagates - the procedure provides for the disinfection of the substrate, which protects seedlings from damage by infections and pests. Most often, the following methods are used for these purposes:
- soil freezing - at a temperature of –20 ...– 25 ° С, for 2–3 days;
- roasting the soil in the oven - at a temperature of 120-130 ° C, for 45 minutes;
- wetting the substrate with disinfectants - 1% formalin or a solution of potassium permanganate.
Propagation of the plant at home
Gloxinia is propagated both vegetatively and generatively, therefore absolutely all parts are suitable for growing this indoor plant. Most often, seeds, leaflets, tubers and cuttings are used for these purposes. Reproduction by parts of the plant is considered more preferable, since seed germination requires a lot of related skills.
For propagation by seeds, both pure seeds and seed used in a special capsule are used. In the second case, the seeds in the factory were spared from all kinds of pathogens, as well as treated with growth stimulants, so this seed does not need preliminary preparation. But if you use clean or personally harvested seeds, they must be sterilized and treated with growth activators.
Most often sterilized seeds by soaking in:
- 1% solution of potassium permanganate - about 20 minutes;
- 70% alcohol - for 15 minutes;
- 3% hydrogen peroxide - no more than 30 minutes.
Most often used in the procedure:
- fresh aloe juice - the seeds are soaked for about 24 hours;
- heteroauxin solution (25 mg / l of water) - the procedure is carried out for no more than 12 hours;
- succinic acid solution (15 g / l of water) - soaking lasts about 20-24 hours.
- Sterilize the seed container with a solution of 1% potassium permanganate, and then rinse off the remaining fluid with boiled water.
- Fill the bottom of the vessel with fine gravel or expanded clay (layer thickness - not more than 1 cm).
- Fill the tanks with prepared soil, and then thoroughly moisten it.
- Sprinkle seeds evenly over the soil surface and moisten them with a spray bottle.
- Cover seeded dishes with a transparent lid or plastic wrap, and then put in a warm and well-lit place.
Leaf propagation is one of the most common ways to cultivate gloxinia. The procedure does not require special skills, and also gives one hundred percent opportunity to get a plant that is full, resistant to various environmental challenges, from just one leaf.
To do this, follow these steps:
- Carefully inspect the adult plant and reveal the smallest leaves on it.
- Gently cut the smallest leaf at the stem level.
- Dip the planting material in a 1% potassium permanganate solution for 10-15 minutes, and then rinse it with clean water.
- Cut the leaf into the thickest veins, and then remove the stalk from it. Thus, a small leafy stalk should be obtained with a length of not more than 2 cm.
- Place the cut leaf in a container with well-moistened soil and cover it with a transparent film or a lid.
- Transfer the sheet container to a warm, well-lit area.
- After new leaves appear on the leaflet, gradually remove the protective cover.
- Dive the leaf with the root into the main pot.
Did you know? The first houseplants appeared on the territory of Ancient China about 5 thousand years ago.
Tuber propagation often becomes the next step in the annual gloxinia development cycle. Before the dormant phase, the plant dumps the aerial part and concentrates all the genetic material in the tubers. Despite the fact that this part of the flower almost always gives full shoots, in order to get a really healthy plant, tubers must be activated.
- Carefully inspect the tubers - specimens with spots or putrefactive inclusions must be rejected, as they are often not viable.
- Wash planting material in warm water and remove old roots from it.
- Pour warm water into a deep plate, add a few drops of Epin or another interchangeable growth stimulant to it.
- Soak the tubers in solution for about 1 hour.
- Dip the soaked tubers in a 1% potassium permanganate solution for 10-15 minutes (for disinfection) and lightly dry them naturally.
- Cut the prepared tubers into small slices and process them with chopped wood ash. Moreover, at least one process must be present on each piece.
- Put the tubers in small pots with well-moistened soil at a distance of 3-4 cm.
- Fill the planting material with soil, while the shoot must be above the ground.
- Transfer planted containers to a warm and well-lit area. In a few days, the tuber will grow, and a full-fledged sprout will come out of it.
Video: Tuberous gloxinia propagation
Planting the cuttings is considered one of the easiest ways to propagate gloxinia. In addition to the fact that it is almost 100% effective, special theoretical knowledge is not required for growing cuttings. To what depth should planting material be planted is the main question, since not only the rooting duration, but also the immunity of the future flower depends on this.
To propagate gloxinia by cuttings, do the following:
- During the period of growing buds cut from the flower a few of the smallest leaves along with the leg. Thus, small cuttings up to 4 cm long should be formed.
- Soak the cuttings in warm water (about + 25 ° C) for an hour.
- Dip the planting material in a warm 1% potassium permanganate solution for 20 minutes, and then rinse it in clean, warm water.
- Insert the leaf cuttings with the foot into a separate pot with well-moistened soil to a depth of 1-2 cm, and then cover it with transparent polyethylene or a lid.
- Transfer the containers with the cuttings to a warm, well-lit place. After a few weeks, the dome can be removed - during this time, the cuttings are completely rooted.
After the planted plant has given rise to a young sprout and is well rooted, it should create optimal conditions for its maintenance. First of all, the flower is demanding on temperature, lighting and watering, without which it will not be easy to achieve abundant flowering. In addition, in order to get a truly spectacular bush, gloxinia must be cut off and shaped.
Fertilizer and watering
Gloxinia is watered regularly, avoiding excessive drying of the soil. To do this, use clean and settled water. It is best if the liquid for watering the flower is slightly warmed, 2-3 ° C higher than the ambient temperature. Otherwise, cold water can be detrimental to the root system of the flower. Watering is carried out from a shallow saucer, under the root. Humidification of the green mass of the flower is undesirable, as often this leads to putrefactive lesions of the leaves and stem. Watering is carried out every 2 days, but at the end of summer and winter the number of procedures is reduced to 1 time in 2-4 days.
Find out how and how to feed indoor plants at home.
Gloxinia loves well-fertilized substrates, so it is fed regularly. During the active vegetative period, top dressing is carried out every 10-14 days. During preparation for rest, the flowers cease to fertilize, until the next season.
Video: How to water and fertilize gloxinia
As a top dressing for this flower, various complex fertilizers are used for garden and flowering plants. The most popular among them is Kemira Lux fertilizer. Saturated solutions (0.5 tsp / 2 l of water) are prepared from it, which are used for root watering of gloxinia.
Pruning and transplanting
A flower transplant is carried out annually, at the beginning of the growing season. Most often this time falls at the end of winter, when the first young shoots appear from the tubers. The flowerpot is selected based on a strict requirement: the new container should be no more than 2-3 cm wider in diameter than the previous one. In this case, it is imperative to ensure that the tubers of the flower are only half-immersed in the substrate, otherwise the plant will gradually die.
Despite the fact that gloxinia practically does not require trimming, this procedure is carried out as necessary. Due to the fact that at home the plant suffers from a lack of lighting, the flowers often stretch upwards, so to preserve a presentable appearance, elongated shoots are removed. Perform the procedure before flowering or during the formation of the buds.
How to care during the flowering period
During the flowering period, the plant requires regular watering, as well as top dressing. By the end of June, the plant needs to stimulate flowering: it is carried out by updating the shoots. To do this, on gloxinia, after the flowers wither, a part of the stem, which is located above the pair of the first leaves, is removed. After that, for 2-3 weeks the plant is given enhanced dressing: every 10 days - with the help of complex fertilizers (Kemira Lux or analogues).
In the end result, this procedure makes it possible to obtain a second generation of flowers, as well as to avoid stretching the shoots. Despite the fact that the second phase of flowering is less spectacular than the first, repeated stimulation of flowering helps to speed up metabolism, and with this, improve the immunity of flowers.
Diseases, pests and methods of dealing with them
Gloxinia is often affected by many infections and pests. The most common of these is fungal disease late blight. The infection causes putrefactive lesions of the stem and leaves, which leads to the death of the flower. The disease is difficult to treat, therefore, thorough disinfection of planting material and soil before propagating the plant will help to prevent the detrimental effects. But if the infection managed to develop on gloxinia, the damaged parts must be carefully removed, and the plant should be treated with a 1% solution of potassium permanganate or Bordeaux liquid once every 10 days before the restoration of healthy growth.
Important! Measures against late blight are also effective in the elimination and prevention of other fungal infections. Among pests on gloxinia, you can often find thrips or parasitic ticks. Developing on the green mass, they cause wilting, twisting of foliage and small shoots, which subsequently leads to the drying of the entire aerial part of the flower. To eliminate parasites, the plant is treated with complex insecticides. The most effective of them are the preparations "Aktara", "Aktellik", "Karate" and "Fitoverm".