Caladium leaves will surprise
Caladium is one of the plants quite often found on the windowsills of flower lovers, the name of which we usually do not know. Caladium is appreciated, first of all, for its beautiful, unusual shape of leaves - green, white, yellow, pink, purple flowers. They can be monophonic or have unique color veins, impressive in their decorativeness. Spots, stripes, mosaic ornaments, dots, nets - which nature does not create on the leaves of Caladium! In the color of caladiums, you can find all shades, except for blue.
Caladium (Caladium) - a genus of tropical herbaceous plants of the Aroid family (Araceae) The genus includes about 15 species found in tropical America. Plants form a dense tropical undergrowth. Used in decorative horticulture for the sake of large brightly colored leaf blades of different colors.
By the beauty of leaves, caladium can only be compared with decorative-leaf begonia. The shape of the leaves of caladium is also unusual - thin, arrow-shaped or spear-shaped, up to 30 cm long. Flowers are nondescript, small, white, collected in small inflorescences in the form of ears. But the caladium has no stem. The plant grows in height and width to 30-50 cm. By the way, in their homeland in Brazil, caladiums reach 5 meters in height, and the leaves are so large that they can save people from rain.
The name Kaladium in the local language means "plant with edible leaves." Like all tuberous, it has a specific life cycle - it “falls asleep” for the winter. Therefore, they grow it as an annual culture and often, unfortunately, simply throw it away, thinking that the plant has died.
Caladium grows in partial shade or in bright places, protected from direct sunlight, which burn leaves. Northwest or eastern windows are best suited for cultivation.
The optimum air temperature for caladium is + 20..25 degrees. Humidity should be high, not lower than 70 percent, so the plant must often be sprayed from a finely divided unit. But you need to spray not on the leaves, but spray moisture over the bush, creating an "artificial fog". It is possible to place a pot with caladium on a pallet with wet gravel. Lack of moisture often causes the death of the plant.
Kaladium is watered with water at room temperature, in moderation, watering is limited in winter. Water must not be allowed to fall on the leaves, because of this they begin to rot. In summer, the plant every 2 weeks requires feeding. Caladium can be grown in a terrarium - such plants in the interior are especially attractive. Transplanted as soon as the roots appear in the drainage hole.
If the leaves wither and die at the caladium in autumn, they reduce watering, and in November they stop it. In winter, as a rule, there comes a period of rest. It is left in pots at a temperature of about + 15..20 degrees and, not more than once a month, moisturize. In March, caladium is put into a room with a temperature of approximately +25 degrees and periodically watered. Very quickly, the plant restores its decorative effect. The diameter of the pot should be twice the diameter of the tuber.
Caladium cultivation at home
Caladium is propagated by daughter tubers in early spring. In March, they are cut with sprouts into as many parts as the shoots of a tuber, like potatoes with eyes. Slices are treated with crushed charcoal, dried for 2-3 days, and then planted each in a separate pot, pouring a layer of drainage on the bottom.
The best for growing caladium is a mixture of peat, turf, humus and sand in equal proportions. However, it should be noted that growing tubers is difficult. If the soil is too wet, they can rot. For some time after planting, they are not watered.
Caladium can also be grown from seeds, but its germination requires a high temperature (25-30 degrees). Crops cover with glass. Spray from the spray gun. Caladium seedlings appear after 2-3 weeks.
At low temperatures (below 16 degrees) or in drafts, caladium can drop leaves. With a lack of light, it grows poorly, the leaves become smaller, lose their color. This also happens if the plant is not transplanted and not fed.