Indoor myrtle – subtle scent and exquisite silhouette – Care

The delicate aroma of myrtle leaves and its strict classical appearance have captivated the hearts of flower growers for more than a century. And the bloom that brings graceful silhouettes to life seems like an amazing surprise. Despite the fact that myrtles are quite capricious and suitable only for experienced flower growers, they are always popular. The ability to shape the silhouette at your discretion and resistance to drafts make myrtle a unique green accent not only for the interior. And the ability to improve the air of myrtle should not be assessed only as a pleasant bonus. After all, there are simply no plants equal to it in terms of the content of essential oils.

Indoor myrtle – subtle scent and sophisticated silhouette. Farmer thelittlepotting

Description of the plant

Myrtles are most often grown by those who can afford to bring their plants out into the fresh air in the summer or who are looking for a luxurious tub decoration for their gardens and terraces. These are recognized garden and indoor favorites. Long-lasting and fast-growing, myrtles only get more beautiful with age.

Common myrtle, or Adam’s tree (myrtle common) – evergreen indoor or garden-indoor shrubs and trees, which are valued not only for the combination of evergreen foliage with unexpectedly abundant and fragrant flowering. First of all, the luxurious classics myrtles attract attention with their graceful silhouettes. Dense branching is evident without their formation, and the light bark and thin branches create a unique contrast to the densely located greenery.

Myrtle leaves, with their impeccable elliptical-lanceolate shape, pointed tip and up to 5 cm long with a special shade of grayish-green tone, look elegant and delicate. Leathery, glossy and opposite, they will not exceed 5 cm in length and only 2 cm in width.

Common myrtle in rooms is represented by varieties, which are better to choose according to the shape and size of the leaves. Most often, the choice comes down to small-leaved and large-leaved options, but some varieties deserve special attention – “twisted” lanceolate ‘Boetica’, as well as flaunting with a very dense crown and unusual berries Full bloom ‘, La Claps’, Tarentina’, Alhambra ‘… The variegated foliage is always indicated by the Variegata prefix in the name.

Myrtle flowers are single, very elegant due to long pedicels, with beautiful golden stamens and whitish-pale petals. They are very aromatic. After spring or summer flowering, with cross-pollination, ornamental fruits-berries of a bluish-black, white or purple color ripen.

Myrth has unique phytoncidal properties. The essential oils secreted by the leaves are an excellent means of preventing colds and infections and a natural antidepressant. The aroma of myrtle soothes, promotes relaxation and healthy sleep.

Common myrtle (Myrtus communis), cultivar 'Boetica'Common myrtle (Myrtus communis), cultivar ‘Boetica’. Farmer valentina3
Common myrtle (Myrtus communis), cultivar 'Flore Pleno'Common myrtle (Myrtus communis), cultivar ‘Flore Pleno’. Farmer jardin-ecologique
Common myrtle (Myrtus communis), cultivar 'Tarentina'Common myrtle (Myrtus communis), cultivar ‘Tarentina’. Farmer theoriginalgarden

Growing conditions for indoor myrtle

Myrtle can be both super-capricious and amazingly hardy, problematic and durable at the same time. It all depends on the conditions: in an ideal environment, myrtles seem to be almost the simplest woody ones to grow. But as soon as you deviate from their requirements, problems begin to arise in the development of the plant.

Lighting and placement

For indoor myrtles, both “free” growing and formed in bonsai, only one lighting mode is permissible – a lot of light, but without the direct sun. Shading will not allow even very old and hardy bushes to develop normally. For the winter, it is advisable to increase the lighting (or organize additional lighting).

Read also our article Pledge of myrtle longevity.

Temperature control and ventilation

Myrtles endure heat only with constant access to fresh air. Even in summer, they prefer coolness, the indicators are not higher than 20 degrees, but any increase in temperature can be compensated for by airing and blowing out to the balcony or garden.

A cool wintering for myrtle is not only desirable, but required. And not only for flowering: in the warmth, the myrtle will begin to deform and become much more vulnerable to neglect, pests and diseases. The permissible maximum is 15 degrees Celsius, but it is desirable that the temperature does not rise above 13 degrees with an optimal range of 5 to 8 degrees Celsius (but not below 0).

Any myrtle needs ventilation even in winter. All warm seasons he will prefer to be outdoors. It is worth avoiding the proximity of heating devices, near which shoots and leaves will begin to dry out.

For all the previous restrictions, myrtles have prepared a pleasant surprise – they are not only not afraid of drafts and temperature changes, but also more actively release essential oils in an unstable environment. If you protect them from frosty air, there will be no problems either indoors or in the garden. The only exception is bonsai myrtle. These beauties are much more sensitive to fluctuations in content indicators.

All warm seasons, myrtle will prefer to be outdoors.All warm seasons, myrtle will prefer to be outdoors.

Caring for myrtle at home

This is a plant for experienced florists who are able to track all plant signals in time and create a stable environment for it. Any slip reduces the stability of the myrtle and affects the appearance. Special attention should be paid to watering.

Watering and air humidity

Almost unchanging substrate moisture is an ideal, but an ideal is difficult to achieve. Myrtles require a special approach to watering and are afraid of even a single overdrying of the soil or overflow, immediately starting to shed their leaves. To find the ideal strategy for them, you can set indicators or manually check the condition of the soil, allowing no more than 2-4 mm to dry out from the top.

The water from the pallets must be drained immediately, protecting the plant from any risk of decay. If the soil accidentally dries out, it is possible to try to rehabilitate the myrtle only by completely immersing it in water for several hours. For myrtle, watering with hard, cold or too warm water is unacceptable.

Myrtle will prefer air humidity between 55 and 65%. Spraying is usually sufficient, they are carried out at temperatures above 18 degrees in the early morning or evening.

Top dressing and composition of fertilizers

It is not worth experimenting with this plant either with the frequency or with the composition of the fertilizers. Top dressing can be applied only in liquid form, preferably one day after abundant watering. You can fertilize the soil only during the period of active growth – every 2 weeks – and additionally after each pruning, the standard dose recommended by the fertilizer manufacturer.

For myrtle, universal fertilizers for indoor plants with a complex composition of macro- and microelements are used. They will not tolerate organics, artisanal or concentrated long-lasting fertilizers.

Myrtles grow so fast that regular pruning is essential.Myrtles grow so quickly that regular pruning is indispensable. Farmer the topiary house

Pruning and shaping myrtle

Myrtles grow so quickly that regular pruning is indispensable. This is a unique plant that tolerates shearing well at any age and at any stage of development, with the exception of the dormant period. But you will have to “pay” for the formation of poor flowering or its absence, so the choice of compactness is a matter of taste.

You can cut myrtles:

  • only once a year, in early spring, after the appearance of signals of regrowth;
  • several times over the summer, adjusting the shape.

Pinching, trimming in third, half or more dramatic haircuts – myrtle can be given any silhouette and shape you want.

Transplant, containers and substrate

Myrtles are overloaded, not transplanted, and only as needed – when the plants really have nowhere to develop. In years without replanting, 5 cm of soil is changed from above. It is critical for them not to deepen the root collar.

Myrtles require quality, breathable containers with a depth greater than width, with large drainage holes that allow for a normal outflow of water. The deepest models are chosen for bonsai. The pots should be compact, without a strong increase in volume and excess free soil (the golden rule is the diameter of the container, equal to half the diameter of the crown).

The substrate can be used universal, slightly acidic or neutral – subject to additives to maintain friability (perlite, coconut fiber, sphagnum, etc.). A high drainage layer (up to ⅓ of the pot height) is required.

Diseases, pests and problems in growing myrtle

Myrtles are one of the favorite plants of scale insects. They are also not uncommon for spider mites and aphids, but even more often they lose their decorative effect due to improper keeping conditions. Deformation of the plant indicates insufficient lighting, curling of leaves – about its excess. And the absence of a cool wintering leads to the shedding of leaves.

Read also our article The most useful indoor plants, or the Healing air of our home.

The most popular way to propagate myrtle is by cuttingsThe most popular way to propagate myrtle is by cuttings

Reproduction of myrtle

Myrtles are not the “fastest”, but still easily propagating plants. They can be grown both from seeds and propagated vegetatively. The seeds require shallow sowing, unusual for woody ones, and stable greenhouse conditions with a cool temperature.

The most popular way to propagate myrtle is by cuttings. Semi-lignified shoots of the plant take root for about a month under a hood in a light shade.

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Anna Evans

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