Houseplant care – care

Experienced growers follow certain rules. One of them is to put potted plants in the brightest place, since sufficient illumination and the length of daylight hours are necessary for their normal development, lush flowering. However, most plants in spring and summer do not live on a hot southern window, midday heat is contraindicated for them, but the morning and evening sun is especially favorable.

Houseplant care. Farmer Storm Coat

Novice amateur flower growers act differently and reason like this: my palm tree or geranium will do well on a high stand in the center of the room. And some, having acquired blooming cineraria and hydrangeas, put them in poorly lit, even dark corners. Maybe it is convenient for someone, but not for plants. It’s bad when they are forced to huddle in the twilight, with a lack of light, sooner or later the stems will elongate, bend, droop, the flowers will fade, lose grace.

Illumination in any room is distributed very unevenly, it drops sharply with distance from the window. Experts have determined, for example, that in a small room with one window, the illumination on the windowsill is 40% of the outdoor (street) illumination, and three meters from the window – only 5%. Even in a room measuring 6,5 x 4,2 m with two windows, the illumination in the center is only 5-10%, and darkness reigns in the corners – there is no more than 1% light compared to street illumination.

This means that ornamental plants must be placed against the windows, and no further than 1,5 m from them, to the left and right of the windows against the wall, in the walls where there is enough light. In “shallow” – not very dark corners, only the most shade-tolerant can be placed: aspidistru (“friendly family”), philodendrons, clivia, ficuses, variegated begonias, Antarctic cissus, some ferns, arrowroots.

We need to think carefully about the arrangement of colors. Light-loving succulents – succulent plants (aloe, gasteria, havortia, fat women, cacti), as well as blooming azaleas, krinums, hippeastrum, bells (“bride and groom”), roses, fuchsias, lead (plumbago), calla lilies, coleus (colored nettles ) are installed on window sills or in the immediate vicinity of windows on stands and tables.

Ampel plants with hanging shoots are hung in a flowerpot in the central part of the window, but, of course, not at the top – there is very little light under the ceiling. Baskets and pots are tied up with thin nylon fishing lines that will not be conspicuous, like laces or coarse twines.

Flowers on the windowsill
Flowers on the windowsill. Farmer Lynda

If you have gathered a lot of different flowers and they are cramped on the windowsill, it is good to make a ladder-stand from thin boards and strengthen it on the side of the window or lean on the windowsill. Flower pots are placed on the steps, and light-loving species are placed in the lower tier of the ladder, shade-tolerant ones – on the upper steps.

It is bad when pots of flowers are placed on high cabinets, it is dark there, almost under the ceiling, in addition, the plants will be content with only lateral low light. The shoots will stretch out towards the light, weaken, become rickety – is this a decoration of the room!

Even violets, geraniums, balsams and other plants standing on the windowsill are always directed towards the window glass. Curved specimens, one-sided rosettes are not decorative. To avoid this, the pots must be periodically turned in different directions towards the light, the plants then develop more evenly. However, not all cultures tolerate such manipulation. For example, zygocactus (“Decembrist”), camellias, various succulents react poorly to movement and rotation, shed their buds and flowers, or even do not tie them at all.

Most plants will not be lopsided if the pots are set slightly tilted towards the light. To do this, it is enough to place a wooden block (or wedge) under the pot so that the angle between the window sill and the bottom of the pot is 10-15 ° C. With the same inclination towards the light, you can hang baskets with ornamental plants.

Well, if you still need to put some flowering light-loving plant in a dark place, for example, in a hallway, corridor, etc., then this can be done, but only for a short time (no longer than 2-3 days). After that, you need to move it back to its original place, closer to the light.

All indoor plants need to be transplanted from time to time, since the amount of food they have is limited by the size of the pot. Young plants are transplanted annually in spring, and old ones after a few years. For example, palms up to 3 years old are transplanted every year, from 5 to 7 years after 3-4 years, and over 10 years old only when the tub rots.

The need for transplanting is due to the fact that there are gradually fewer nutrients in the ground. Some of them are consumed by the plant for nutrition, some are leached during watering. The physical properties of the earth also change – water permeability, moisture capacity, the acidity or alkalinity of the soil increases, and the pot becomes cramped for the plant living in it.

Plants for the most part have a hard time transplanting, so often it is not necessary to do it, but only as needed.

I do not water the flower intended for transplanting for 3-4 days
I do not water the flower intended for transplanting for 3-4 days. Farmer Donald Vantine

The need to transplant an adult plant is recognized by the following signs:

  • 1. The plant blooms worse, there are fewer flowers and they become smaller.
  • 2. The earth is squeezed out of the pot from the excess of roots.
  • 3. The roots come out of the bottom hole of the pot.

One of these signs or their combination indicates the need for a transplant.

I do it in February – March – April before the plant leaves the dormant period or with the appearance of the first young leaves.

Of course, diseased plants have to be transplanted at any time, without observing favorable terms.

I do not water the flower intended for transplanting for 3-4 days, so that the earthen lump easily comes out of the pot. I remove the top layer of the earth to a depth of 2-3 cm and throw it away.

I pick up another pot with a diameter of 2-3 cm larger than the previous one. I wash the old pots with soap, scald with boiling water, and then wipe the inside with a strong solution of potassium permanganate.

I cover the bottom hole of the new pot with a shard (with a crochet upward) and fill it 2-3 cm with broken brick or pebbles, or washed slag with an admixture of sand, or other material suitable for drainage.

I prepare a suitable earthen mixture for the plant, pour it with a cone (slide) to half a new pot. So, both pots for transplanting are prepared (the new one and the one from which I will transplant). Now, with a blow of my right hand on the bottom of the pot, I shake the plant out of the old pot and with scissors I cut off the roots that braid the earthen ball. Then, with a sharpened wooden stick, I remove the earth from the roots from below. I cut off large and rotten roots and sprinkle the cuts with coal dust.

Without completely shaking off the soil from the roots, I transfer the plant to a new pot, carefully spread the roots along the earthen cone and gradually fill it with the soil mixture, shaking and lightly tapping the pot on the table so that there are no empty spaces between the roots. I compact the earth near the walls of the pot, then water it abundantly, mulch with dry earth and transfer the flower to where direct sunlight does not fall, but not into darkness. I do not water the transplanted plant for 5-6 days, but I spray it daily. I resume watering as the top layer of the earth dries up and the plant grows.

Author: E. Nazarov.


Houseplant care - care
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Anna Evans

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