Thursday, 23 February 2012
Cyclamen Plant Care
I recently bought a very sad cyclamen plant but I figured I could nurse it back to health. It was only $3 (in comparison to the $10 it usually is) so I thought it was a cheap risk. So as usual, I'm out looking for how to care the best for my plants. Here's what I found about this plant. So far I have 2 flowers growing and lots of new growth for leaves so that's very exciting!
The florist cyclamen is derived from Cyclamen persicum, a Mediterranean plant. In nature it goes dormant during the summer months, comes into growth as cooler, damper weather starts, flowers in autumn, winter or spring, and goes dormant again as the summer becomes warm. Cyclamens grow from tubers that are round and rather flat. The tubers are the storage organs that keep the plants alive during their summer dormancy.
These plants like temperatures around 20C during the day and around 10C during the evening. (I'm going to see how this plant does in my 25C house and let you know if it can handle it!)
Water your cyclamen plant only when the soil is dry to the touch, but to not leave the plant in this dry state so long that it shows visible signs of not being watered, such as droopy leaves and flowers. When you water the plant, water from below the leaves so that the water does not touch the stems or leaves. Water on the stems and leaves can cause them to rot.
Cyclamen like bright light but do not need direct light. Put your plant near a east/west window, but not directly in a south facing window.
Only fertilizer once every 1-2 months with water soluble fertilizer mixed at half strength. When cyclamen get too much fertilizer, it can affect their ability to rebloom.
After a cyclamen blooms, it will go into a dormant state. Going into a dormant state looks very much like the plant is dying as the leaves will turn yellow and fall off. It is not dead, just sleeping. With proper cyclamen plant care, you can help it through its dormancy and it will rebloom in a few months.
When taking care of a cyclamen after blooming, allow the leaves to die and stop watering the plant once you see the signs that the leaves are dying. Place the plant in a cool, somewhat dark place. You can remove any dead foliage, if you would like. Let sit for 2 months.
Time to Rebloom
Once a cyclamen has finished its dormant period, you can start to water it again and bring it out of storage. You may see some leaf growth, and this is ok. Make sure to completely soak the soil. You may want to set the pot in a tub of water for an hour or so, then make sure any excess water drains away.
Check the cyclamen tuber and make sure that the tuber has not outgrown the pot. If the tuber seems crowded, repot the cyclamen to a larger pot.
Once the leaves start to grow, you can resume normal cyclamen care and it should rebloom shortly.
For a bit more info here's another great site.