Poinsettia is the most beautiful, growing in an apartment

Poinsettia is the most beautiful, growing in an apartment

According to the horoscope, the zodiac sign Aquarius (January 21 - February 20) corresponds to many indoor plants that are well known to flower growers. Among them are pleasant stromanta, calathea (striped decorated, wonderful), dracaena Gosfera, Rowley's cross, silver-veined fittonia, gouty jatropha, arrowroot tricolor (prayer tree), coleus (Blume, dwarf), striped abutilon (indoor maple) and poinsettia (Euphorbia is the most beautiful or beautiful).

The most beautiful poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) (family Euphorbiaceae) can be called one of the most beloved and popular plants among flower growers in the world. In the most interesting ("fighting") colors poinsettia is most often found in stores on the eve of Christmas. By the beginning of flowering (November-December), fiery red, pink, cream or white (depending on the variety) bracts of an elongated-elliptical shape are formed.

In the natural conditions of its homeland - Mexico (tropical forests of Central and South America), poinsettia is a perennial evergreen shrub with thick hollow branches and long (up to 12-15 cm) and wide (up to 6-7 cm) dark green lobed broad-lanceolate leaves (with reddish or silvery veins), with a rounded base and a notched or even edge, which are located on long (5-8 cm) petioles of red-coral color.

In indoor floriculture, she appeared in 1834. The inconspicuousness of inconspicuous, greenish-yellow flowers, collected in corymbose inflorescences at the ends of the branches and usually appearing in December-January, is more than compensated for by the staining of the bracts and nearby leaves by this time, which acquire a fiery red color. These bracts are shaped like a multi-pointed glowing star.

The flowering of milkweed continues from December to February, but with skillful cultivation and the use of certain varieties, it can last until March (especially if a plant with still small central inflorescences is purchased); bracts remain after flowering for another 1-2 months.

If a young plant is acquired in the spring, taking into account its photophilousness, it is placed on a window with a southern or southwestern orientation (shaded from direct sunlight), protected from drafts. This "sissy" is watered with slightly warmed water (as the topsoil dries up), preventing the accumulation of excess moisture in the ground.

The plant reacts very painfully to dry air, therefore, to increase its moisture, poinsettia leaves are sprayed. For successful development, the optimal temperature is considered to be 20-22 ° C. Since poinsettia grows with a short day, a ten-hour shortened day is created for it to bloom in the autumn months. In winter, during the flowering of poinsettia, a lot of light is needed (avoid direct sunlight). If the temperature is reduced to 17-18 ° C, the leaves of the bracts will be colored more intensely. However, this is fraught with a certain danger: you can not keep track of the temperature (it is unacceptable to lower it below 15 ° C).

It is beneficial for the plant to periodically spray the foliage during the flowering period, especially if the room has low air humidity. After the completion of flowering and natural fall of green leaves, poinsettia begins a period of short-term dormancy (February - March), therefore, watering is sharply reduced, but the soil should not completely dry out.

In order for the plant to bloom next Christmas, experts recommend doing the following. After the leaves are shed, the stems are cut, leaving 8-10 cm from the soil surface. The poinsettia is transferred to a cool, semi-dark place, almost without watering (but do not allow the earthen coma to dry out).

In early May, they are transplanted into a new pot with part of the old soil. Watering and regular feeding is done until young shoots appear, which, as a rule, grow back by the end of September. Of these, 4-5 of the strongest are left, and the rest are removed (they are sometimes used for reproduction). And poinsettias organize a specific lighting regime. It is covered early in the evening (in the afternoon) with a dark (completely impervious to light) plastic bag, and in the morning it is removed, since the plant should be in the dark for 14-15 hours a day (the length of daylight hours should not exceed 10 hours). Such complete shading is necessary for the establishment of flower buds and the subsequent staining of the bracts.

An excess of light (even the use of fluorescent lamps to illuminate the room) greatly retards the development of flower buds, while at the same time contributing to the rapid vegetative growth of the plant (that is, its design as a decorative leaf). This reception lasts two months, after which they switch to the usual regimen. In this case, the poinsettia blooms for Christmas. If you start shading in July - early August, you can get the plant blooming in October - early November.

For the successful cultivation of poinsettia, some amateurs recommend that the soil mixture be made from turf, leaf and humus (peat) soil with the addition of sand in a ratio of 2: 2: 4: 1, others suggest making it from the same components in equal parts. It should also be noted that this plant is able to tolerate high concentrations of salts in the soil quite normally. During the growth period, the poinsettia must be fed with a solution of complex fertilizers (with some predominance of nitrogen fertilizers). With the beginning of the growing season and before flowering, you can practice monthly fertilizing with infusion of slurry (1:10).

At low air humidity in the room (especially during the period of operation of the heating system batteries), the inflorescences may turn yellow, and the edges of the leaves may turn brown after yellowing. With an excess or deficit of moisture in the soil, the leaves wither, turn yellow and fall off. If the leaves begin to wither, the plant needs to be watered urgently. At too low a temperature, a draft or lack of lighting, the leaves can suddenly fall off. At low humidity and high air temperatures, a spider mite may appear on the plant.

More often, flower growers grow poinsettia varieties that have bright red bracts. Especially appreciated among lovers of the Lilo variety with dark green leaves and ruby-red bracts. According to experts, this variety has increased resistance to major pests and diseases. For relatively warm rooms, breeders obtained an early flowering variety Sapdzhibi: in a heated room, it can lose the bright red color of the bracts.

These varieties are characterized by a "traditional" Christmas color. But in the last 10-12 years, breeders based on the main species E. vulcherrima have significantly expanded the range of poinsettia and developed a fairly large group of varieties, forms and varieties characterized by bracts of different lengths (15-30 cm) and the most varied colors (scarlet, pink, white , yellow), even combined colors (among flower growers, interest in plants of pink and two-color colors is gradually increasing).

So, for Capri White and Sonora it is white, for Marbie it is creamy white, for Dorotea and Capri Pink it is pink, for Pink Pepermint it is apricot. For many amateur flower growers, the Lemon Drop form, characterized by the lemon-yellow color of the bracts, may be interesting, but it requires a relatively cool room.

More and more, marble colors of the bracts (Marblestar, Cortez Cream, etc.) are becoming fashionable. A remarkable variety of Jungle Bells with original spotted inflower leaves. There are mini-plants, in the form of a densely branched bush and in the form of a standard form. Thanks to this variety, for a room flower garden, you can choose cultivars - undersized, compact, for a window (30-45 cm high) and tall (for cutting).

It is better to propagate poinsettia by cuttings - in spring (March-April) or early summer. They must be taken from well-developed mother cells. To do this, the upper parts of the stems (10-12 cm long) with 4-5 leaves are cut off from the poinsettia. At the same time, milky juice begins to flow abundantly from the slices. It is for the peculiarity of highlighting this poinsettia juice that they gave the second name - "the most beautiful euphorbia", although it is completely different (and not a "relative") to another euphorbia (with thorns) - a crown of thorns.

The leaking juice can seriously slow down the rooting of the cutting, so it is washed off for 10 minutes with running water (or put in water with a temperature of 40 ° C for 20-30 minutes) - let it flow out in sufficient volume. It is believed that excess juice in the rooting substrate can also cause rotting of the tips of the cuttings. Then, for successful root formation, the cuttings are kept for an additional 5-6 hours in a cool, dark place, after which the remnants of the juice are carefully collected on the sections with cotton wool or a sponge; root (at 25 ° C).

A mixture of coarse sand and peat is used; it is especially good if the cuttings are covered with a glass cover to retain moisture and humidity. After 2-3 weeks, the cuttings take root, they are transplanted into small pots 5-7 cm in size, covered with a transparent plastic bag for a week; if necessary, tied to a peg. After a month, the plants are transferred into larger pots, and after another 4-5 weeks they are pinched. When the side shoots appear, you can make a third transfer of young plants into large pots. At the end of summer, they are moved to the windowsill and kept as usual.

The finest poinsettia can be used both as a single plant and in group planting. By the way, experts advise when buying it with small (unopened) real inflorescences located in the center of the star. Then the plant will bloom for a very long time, which means it will decorate the "company" of your indoor flowers on the windowsill with its beautifully painted leaves. It should also be recalled that poinsettia juice is poisonous, therefore, safety precautions are followed when caring for it: if it gets on the skin (especially on the mucous membrane of the eyes), it can cause severe irritation and sharp pain.

A. Lazarev, Senior Researcher, All-Russian Research Institute of Plant Protection, Pushkin


Popular poinsettia varieties

The growing popularity of poinsettia has led to the emergence of many varieties. Now there is an opportunity to buy pink, white, yellow and even two-tone poinsettia. In Russian stores there are varieties of Magep, Lemon Snow, Peterstar marble. The common variety Sonora White has noble ivory bracte leaves, while Monet Twilight has pink speckled leaves.

Irina V. Struchkov A, candidate of biology, sciences. G. Nizhny Novgorod. (based on materials from the magazine "my favorite flowers", 2013)


Diseases and pests of the Christmas star flower

  • Sometimes pests grow on poinsettia that kill the plant. The most common pest of poinsettia is the whitefly. Pests are similar to moths - the same small, white and winged. Whiteflies usually settle on the inside of the leaves. Whitefly is difficult enough to destroy, but, to the great joy of flower enthusiasts, these parasites do not cause severe harm to the plant (if there are not too many of them). As a rule, to get rid of whiteflies, they are sprayed with special insecticides.
  • When the humidity of the room is low, the poinsettia is captured by spider mites. But for poinsettia, they practically do not pose a threat. Mites, like whiteflies, are effectively treated with insecticidal soap. Spider mites are practically invisible, but small yellow spots near the tips of the leaves testify to them. If the plant has a large number of spider mites, the plant will have cobwebs.

  • One of the most dangerous pests for poinsettia is mealybugs. They are easy to spot, but they are also easy to deal with. These are the largest pests on the Christmas Star and are sticky white cotton bunches. To get rid of mealybugs, you need to treat the poinsettia with alcohol or insecticidal soap.
  • Fungus mosquitoes are the most annoying parasites that poinsettia owners can encounter. These parasites can damage the roots of the plant, so you need to fight them. They are brown insect mosquitoes the size of a pinhead. They usually live on the surface of the soil. Dealing with mushroom mosquitoes is simple, just treat it with insecticidal soap.

Poinsettia care is not very difficult, although it has its own characteristics. With the right approach, poinsettia will live with you for a long time and retain its attractiveness.

Read other interesting rubrics


The finest poinsettia varieties

The enormous popularity of poinsettia has inspired the creative imagination of breeders, and to date, flower growers are offered a huge selection of a wide variety of varieties with a wide range of bracts, shape and color of leaves, as well as the size of the plant itself. Below is just a small part of all this variety.

- fiery red bracts in ‘Peterstar Red’, ‘Red Diamond’, ‘Cortez Fire’
- bright red - ‘Olympia’, ‘Barbara’, ‘Angelica’, ‘Goldfinger’ (classic red)
- dark red - ‘Max Red’, ‘Freedom Coral’
- bright scarlet - ‘Sonora Fire’, ‘Galactica’, ‘Freedom’
- raspberry - 'Annett Hegg'.

- soft pink - ‘Freedom Pink’, ‘Dorothe’, ‘Festival Rose’
- hot pink - 'Pink Ell' (compact)
- creamy pink - 'Pink Ribbon' (miniature variety)
- salmon pink - ‘Cortez Pink’.

- snow white - ‘Eckes White’, ‘Freedom White’, ‘Princettia Max white’, ‘Silverstar White’ (compact)
- white with a greenish tinge - ‘White Star’
- ivory - ‘Cortez White’.

- with strokes and spots - 'Jingle Bells Sonora' (purple-burgundy with white strokes), 'Monet Twilight' (pink with white spots and stripes), 'Da Vinci' (with white-pink strokes), 'Cortez Cream' (marbled, compact), Sonora (bright red with white strokes), 'Sonora White Glitter' (bright red with white strokes, light green spots and burgundy green stripes along the veins)
- with colored edging - 'Strawberry & Cream' (pink-purple, with heavily jagged white edges), 'Jester Pink' (creamy pink with green edging), 'Silverstar Marble' (creamy pink with white edging), ' Marblestar '(pink with a wide, heavily cut white edge)
- with contrasting veins - 'Jester Red' (bright red with darker veins), 'Carousel Pink' (soft pink with green veins and a terry effect), 'Sonora White' (ivory with white veins), 'Regina '(creamy white with green streaks).

Another direction of selection is bracts of an unusual shape. Here you can distinguish the variety ‘Harlequin Red’ with bright red dense longitudinally corrugated bracts and ‘Carousel Pink’ with pale pink bracts with green veins, strongly wavy along the edge.


Pentas - Egyptian star

Pentas is one of the rare representatives of the plant kingdom, willing to delight the owners with flowers in the most cloudy months - from October to February. During this period, any greenery, any leaf or flower gives great joy, even if it grows only on the windowsill. It is impossible to indifferently gaze at the fluffy hat of the pentas, which is strewn with bright five-pointed stars. And more than one gardener fell in love with this plant because its flowers flash like New Year's lights in our gloomy rooms and help us forget a little about sadness in anticipation of spring.

In indoor greenhouses, they call him a bouquet in a pot, and also an Egyptian star. And I fully support such names, because only one flowerpot with this wonderful flower can dispel the boring monotony of everyday life and cheer up. The pentas inflorescences seem to have absorbed the entire color spectrum - we can admire the iridescence of milky, white, lilac, pink, flesh, red, crimson colors. There are several peculiarities in caring for this handsome man. Here I am going to tell you about them.


Poinsettia flowers are the most beautiful and their diseases

Due to excessive waterlogging of the soil or insufficient watering, leaves may wilt or even fall off. Also, the leaves can suddenly fall off without signs of wilting in a draft or when exposed to too low temperature. These are not all poinsettia diseases, some of them are affected by viral and bacterial infections, pests.

In insufficient light, the finest poinsettia flowers lose their turgor, the leaves wither and fall off.

In hot and too dry air in the room, the edges of the leaves turn yellow or brown, the inflorescences fall off.

Great harm is caused to the plant by worms covering the leaves with honeydew.

Yellowing and drying of the leaves and even the dying off of the plant are a sign of damage by spider mites.

Thrips cause the appearance of elongated wavy spots on the leaves and their folding.


How to care for poinsettia at home

The poinsettia is native to tropical deciduous forests located on the moist, shady slopes of the mountains of the Pacific coast of Mexico. There is always warm, humid, a lot of scattered light and organic matter in the soil. Therefore, we must provide the plant with a light (but without direct sunlight), warm (about + 20 ° C) room, frequent watering and spraying with warm (+ 22-25 ° C) water, as well as top dressing with complex fertilizer at least once a two weeks. Lack of phosphorus is one of the causes of leaf fall; lack of potassium leads to chlorosis.

Poinsettia is the most beautiful - a short-day plant, that is, it is the short days of our winter that encourage it to bloom. But until that time, the plant should gain strength, grow stems and foliage, which is possible only with a sufficiently long day. To help poinsettia in autumn, from the second half of September to the first decade of October, it is supplemented for two weeks from about 21 to 23 hours with 20-40 W lamps per 1 m2. When using conventional incandescent lamps, it is important to take care not to overheat the plant: your hand, brought to the leaves, should not be hot under the lamp. From the beginning of October, for 8 weeks, the plant is transferred to a different regime: no more than 10 hours of lighting daily. To maintain the lighting mode, it is very convenient to use timers, usually sold in electrical shops.

After two to three weeks, flower buds will form, and by December the plant will bloom. Some growers, before flowering, reduce the temperature to + 16 ° C for several days (but in no case lower!). This is believed to increase plant resistance and enhance the color intensity of the bracts.

After the blooming of the Christmas star, a period of rest is laid until the end of March - mid-April: the temperature is lowered to + 16 °, watering is sharply reduced, fertilizers are not applied. At the end of April-May, the awakened poinsettia is cut off by about 1/3, they begin to water and supplement, and, if necessary, transplanted. The transplant soil should be slightly acidic (pH 5.5 - 6.5) and contain equal proportions of peat, turf, humus and sand.


How to keep a flower

It is customary to give a Christmas star in winter. During this period, the plant produces bright bracts, attracting attention. Not many people know how to care for poinsettia at home, therefore, soon after flowering, the plant dies.

It is quite possible to save a flower purchased in a store, but for this you need to try. It is important to know that care for poinsettia includes several stages, the order of which must be strictly observed. After buying or receiving a gift, the plant must be watered, moderately moistening the soil. Regular watering should be provided as long as the bracts remain fresh. After their wilting, leaves begin to fall. During this period, watering should be reduced to a minimum.

As soon as the Christmas tree has thrown off all the leaves, the stems must be cut off, leaving sprouts 15 cm high. Watering should be stopped and the pot in which the poinsettia flower is growing should be removed to a dark, cool place. The sleep period lasts until May.


Watch the video: POINSETTIA PLANT CARE. Joy Us Garden