Home chrysanthemums are elegant plants that at first glance charm with their miniature and beauty. The time of their flowering usually falls in late autumn, when nature outside the window no longer pleases with bright colors. In this dull season, indoor chrysanthemums are covered with lush caps of fragrant flowers. What are these amazing plants? What nuances should a florist planning to grow and breed take into account?
Description of indoor flower
Pot chrysanthemums are one and perennial herbaceous plants or low ornamental shrubs, whose homeland is the countries of East Asia. The undeniable advantages of these indoor plants are flower growers unpretentiousness, endurance, attractive appearance, long and spectacular flowering. Depending on the variety, the height of adult plants varies from 15 to 65 or more centimeters. Stems and leaves can have a smooth or pubescent surface.
The size and shape of the leaves of potted chrysanthemums depend on the varietal characteristics of the plant. The most common are varieties with simple, dissected and serrated leaves. The color of the leaves can be pale emerald or gray-green. In most varieties, flowering occurs in late August and lasts until December. During this period, plants are covered with small, but very beautiful flowers. The shape of the flowers can be simple, anemone, terry, semi-double or pompom.
The color and size of the flowers depend on the plant variety. The most popular among flower growers are varieties of chrysanthemums with large and small flowers of milky white, cream, pink-red, golden yellow, raspberry, orange-brown and pale lilac color. The root system of plants is superficial, branched. As the chrysanthemum grows, its roots develop parallel to the surface of the earth.
Domestic chrysanthemums with bush and ampel form are very popular among gardeners. The formation of the aerial parts of plants is usually carried out by pruning or pinching the stems.
Species and varieties
The most popular indoor plants are Indian and Chinese chrysanthemums . These species are currently used by breeders to obtain new original varieties with various typical characteristics. So, both of these species were used by scientists in the cultivation of Korean chrysanthemums - a separate group of small-flowered varieties that are resistant to adverse environmental factors.
There are a number of significant differences between Indian, Chinese, and Korean chrysanthemums. They consist both in the external characteristics of plants and in their requirements for growing conditions. Below are descriptions of chrysanthemums of these varieties, as well as characteristics of the most interesting varieties.
Indian indoor chrysanthemums are a type of large-flowered chrysanthemums intended for cultivation exclusively at home. The average height of adult plants varies from 20 to 70 centimeters. The diameter of the aboveground part is usually about 15-17 centimeters. Chrysanthemums of this species are characterized by increased demands on the conditions of detention. They painfully tolerate temperature extremes, cooling, drafts, lack of moisture and sunlight.
Chinese or garden chrysanthemums are a variety of very attractive highly decorative chrysanthemums intended for growing both at home and in the open ground. For home growing, flower growers use low- and medium-sized varieties, the height of which varies from 20 to 50 centimeters. Characteristic features of chrysanthemums of this species are unpretentious care, long and colorful flowering.
Korean chrysanthemums are a group of perennial small-flowered varieties suitable for growing at home and in open ground. In floriculture, these plants are widespread due to their unpretentiousness, endurance, resistance to drought and temperature extremes. To date, breeders have managed to develop varieties of Korean chrysanthemums with flowers of medium and large sizes.
Anastasia is one of the most popular varieties of Indian indoor chrysanthemums, recommended for indoor cultivation. The average height of the bushes of adult plants can be 60-80 centimeters. Leaves pinnate, dark emerald hue. The flowers are large, lush, consisting of many long lobiform petals, combined in thick baskets. The color of the flowers can be different - milky white, lemon yellow, cream-bronze, pinkish-lilac.
“Crystal” is a very attractive variety of chrysanthemums, intended for growing at home. Pot chrysanthemum of this variety is a small compact bush with thin straight stems, directed upwards. The leaves are deep green, dense, pinnate. The flowers are large, lush, semi-double or anemone. The color of the flowers is milky white, with a pale yellow or yellow-green core.
"Zembla Mix" is an original variety of Indian chrysanthemums with large (6-12 centimeters in diameter) flowers. Plant height can vary from 30 to 70 centimeters or more. The beginning of flowering occurs in late summer or early autumn. The flowers are large, voluminous, often have a pompom or terry shape. Coloring can be dazzling white, pale pink, pistachio green, purple red.
Baltika is a group of varieties of very effective bush chrysanthemums of foreign selection. When grown at home, plants form compact bushes about 30-40 centimeters high. When grown in open ground, the height of plants can reach 60-70 centimeters. Flowering occurs in September-October. The size of lush terry flowers usually does not exceed 12-13 centimeters. Coloring of flowers can be bright white (Baltika White), lemon yellow (Baltika Yellow), coral orange (Baltika Salmon), pale pink (Baltika Pink).
"Alexandrite" is a spectacular variety of early flowering Korean chrysanthemums that can be grown both at home and in the open ground. Adult plants are low (up to 40 centimeters tall) multi-stemmed bushes with elegant pinnately dissected leaves. The beginning of flowering is the second half or end of August. Terry or semi-double flowers, reaching 5 centimeters in diameter. The color of the petals is lilac pink on the periphery, lemon yellow in the center.
"Evening lights" - a non-terry low-growing variety, suitable for growing both indoors and outdoors. The average height of plants is about 30 centimeters. Bushes are compact, hemispherical. Plants enter the flowering phase in the second half of August. The flowers are simple, chamomile, reaching about 5 centimeters in diameter. Coloring - crimson red, with a golden yellow core.
Knopa is a very attractive, abundantly flowering variety. The height of plants varies from 30 to 35 centimeters. Plants form compact multi-stemmed bushes. Flowering begins in mid-autumn and continues until frost. During this period, chrysanthemums of this variety form numerous small flowers of a rich yellow color.
Conditions of detention
Domestic chrysanthemums are considered unpretentious plants that do not impose specific requirements on the conditions of their maintenance. In order for these representatives of the decorative flora to fully develop, continuously and abundantly bloom, they need to provide optimal light, humidity and temperature conditions. In addition, the size of the pot (container) and the composition of the used soil mixture play a significant role.
The root system of these plants is superficial, located shallow in the ground. For this reason, in choosing a pot, preference should be given to wide and not too deep containers. Observations show that in tall and narrow pots stagnation of water more often occurs, leading to root decay. In addition, in such containers, the roots of chrysanthemums cannot receive the required amount of moisture.
For normal development, timely and long flowering, home chrysanthemums need full lighting. These plants prefer moderately bright, diffused sunlight. Direct sunlight is disastrous for these representatives of the decorative flora. Experienced flower growers argue that the timing of flowering indoor chrysanthemums largely depends on the length of daylight hours. It is noted that many varieties of these plants are able to bloom continuously for 3-6 months if they receive a sufficient amount of light during the day (at least 12 hours a day). Short daylight hours negatively affects both the duration and the quality of flowering.
Temperature and humidity
When growing chrysanthemums at home, it is recommended to maintain a stable indoor temperature at + 18 ... + 22 °. When the temperature rises to + 25 ° (or more), these plants stop flowering, stop the development of buds, and wilting and drying of the leaves begins. In very hot weather, flower growers recommend shading chrysanthemums and periodically spraying them with spray water. It is important to note that plants in the flowering and budding phase cannot be sprayed with water.
The humidity level in the room should be 50-70%. Dried air is equally harmful for the leaves and stems of chrysanthemums, as well as for their flowers and buds.
The soil mixture consisting of the following components is considered optimal for growing potted chrysanthemums :
- fertile garden land (3 parts);
- peat (1 part);
- leaf humus (1 part);
- clean medium-grained sand (1 part).
Suitable for growing these plants and ready-made store mixes intended for ornamental crops. Soil acidity should be around 6-6.5. The soil mixture itself must be loose, moisture- and breathable.
Transfer to another container
Transplanting plants is not recommended immediately after purchase. A new green pet needs to be given some time to adapt to unusual conditions. If the plant blooms or sets buds, you should wait until the flowering ends. The fact that the chrysanthemum has successfully adapted to an unfamiliar environment will be evidenced by the growth of its old and the development of new shoots. At this stage, the plant should be transplanted into a spacious wide container. The transplant is carried out carefully, removing the flower from the old pot along with an earthen lump. The dimensions of the new pot should be approximately 1-1.5 times the diameter of the root coma.
Before transplanting, a layer of drainage should be laid on the bottom of the pot. In its quality, you can use river pebbles, small pieces of polystyrene foam, gravel. Shop chrysanthemums purchased in winter can be planted with the advent of spring. A transplant carried out in the winter can adversely affect the dormancy stage in which the plant resides.
Young potted chrysanthemums are recommended to be replanted every year - until the plants reach the age of 3-4 years. The size of the new pots should slightly exceed the size of the old containers. During the transplantation, the old soil mixture is replaced. Damaged, deformed or dry fragments of roots and shoots during the procedure are removed with sharp scissors or secateurs. After transplanting, the plants are placed in a shaded place, protected from drafts.
In order for chrysanthemums growing at home to feel comfortable and bloom regularly, they need to provide competent care. Experienced flower growers argue that caring for these plants is not difficult at all.
Potted chrysanthemums need frequent but gentle watering. It is important to prevent strong drying of the soil surface in the pot. However, these plants should not be watered excessively. With stagnation of moisture in the soil, green pets can suffer from the development of fungal diseases. Watering is preferably carried out in the evening or morning hours. The recommended frequency of watering is 2-3 procedures per week. In cloudy and cool weather, the frequency of watering is reduced.
During the entire growing season, indoor chrysanthemums are recommended to be fed 1 time in 7-10 days. Most floriculturists use store-bought complex fertilizers as fertilizing (Fertika Lux, Bona-Forte). Some gardeners feed plants according to this schedule:
- in spring (in the phase of active development of chrysanthemums) - nitrogen-containing fertilizers;
- during the formation of buds and flowering - potassium-phosphorus fertilizers.
Feeding plants is allowed after 10-12 hours after watering. Nitrogen-containing fertilizers are applied only in the spring to prevent the intensive growth of green mass. Potash and phosphorus top dressing cease to be applied after flowering.
Pruning and pinching
Periodic pruning and pinching of the shoots allow you to create neat and compact bushes. Also, these procedures help to maintain the strength of the plants that they need to form flower ovaries. Pinching involves removing the tops of growing shoots. This procedure activates the growth of the lateral stems, contributes to the awakening of "sleeping" lateral buds. Small-flowered varieties pinch about 2 times per season, large-flowered varieties - about 3 times per season. Pinch plants should be before flowering. It is advisable to cut off all excess, elongated, excessively long shoots that violate the symmetry and proportions of the bush. Pruning is carried out in the spring, when the plants enter the phase of active development.
Be sure to perform the procedure of pruning plants before wintering. In this case, the bushes are shortened with sharp scissors or secateurs almost to the ground, leaving only small stumps above its surface.
After the potted chrysanthemum has faded, it needs to provide rest. This period is very important for restoring the resources spent by the plant on budding, flowering, and the formation of young shoots. The preparation of chrysanthemums for the rest period consists in pruning bushes to a height of 10 centimeters from the surface of the earth. Next, the pot with the plant should be placed in a very cool, but bright place. The air temperature in the room should not exceed + 5 ... + 8 °. This temperature range is considered the most suitable for wintering plants. Throughout the rest period, chrysanthemums should be watered no more than 1 time per month.
Why does not bloom and what to do about it?
Most varietal chrysanthemums enter the flowering phase in the fall. If this does not happen, you can try to make the plant bloom using various methods. The most popular reason for the lack of flowering is the lack of nutrients in the soil. In order to eliminate the problem, it is necessary to feed the plants with phosphorus-potassium fertilizers.
Another reason may be the lack of lighting. In this case, for the chrysanthemum to bloom, it needs to provide full lighting throughout the day. The lack of natural light can be compensated for with the help of artificial light sources - phyto-lamps or fluorescent lamps.
Many varieties of indoor chrysanthemums develop well and bloom in the open ground. The most adapted to the external environment are Korean chrysanthemums that are resistant to adverse factors - temperature extremes, cold snap, drafts, drought. Young and mature chrysanthemum bushes of cold-resistant varieties can be planted on the street (in open ground) only after the soil warms up and the threat of night frost disappears. Recommended time for landing is the end of May or the beginning of June.
Bushes should be planted in well-lit corners of the garden with a slight tenuous shadow. The soil at the landing site should be loose, fertile, moderately moist. It is not allowed to plant home chrysanthemums in places with a high level of groundwater. Before landing, pits with a depth of about 30 centimeters are prepared. The size of the pits is calculated based on the size of the root lump of seedlings. The distance between the pits should be about 50 centimeters.
A sand-gravel mixture is laid at the bottom of the pits, on top of which a layer of garden soil is covered. Next, the seedling is vertically placed in the pit along with a lump of earth on the roots. Twisted and knocked out roots carefully spread and fill the pit with nutritious soil mixture. At the end of the work, the earth in the near-stem circle is slightly compacted, the bush is watered and temporarily shaded from the sun.
Home chrysanthemums are usually propagated by cuttings or division of the mother bush. Florists resort to the seed method of reproduction in rare cases. The harvesting of cuttings is carried out in the spring, when the plant completely leaves the dormant phase. When the shoots of the bush reach a height of 13-15 centimeters, they begin to harvest the planting material. To do this, the shoots of the mother bush are cut into cuttings 10-12 centimeters long, which are immediately placed in containers with loose and moist soil, deepening the lower part by 1-1.5 centimeters. Next, the container with the cuttings is closed with glass or film. Throughout the rooting of cuttings inside the container, high humidity is maintained by spraying. Cuttings take root in a few weeks.
Separation of mother bushes is carried out in early spring. Separate the bushes manually or using a secateurs. As a rule, one adult bush of chrysanthemums is enough to get 2-3 full divisions. They are planted in containers and sent to a cool room where they maintain high humidity until the plants are fully adapted. In order to grow indoor chrysanthemums from seeds, it is necessary to prepare high-quality planting material, containers with a layer of drainage and a loose nutrient substrate. The recommended sowing time is the end of February or the beginning of March.
Seeds are sown in rows in containers with a substrate. The seeds of annual varieties are sprinkled on top with a thin layer of sand. Seeds of perennial varieties are slightly pressed with the fingertips into the substrate. After sowing, the ground is well sprayed from the spray gun and the container is covered with glass. The first shoots appear after about 3-4 weeks. When at least 4 true leaves are formed on the seedlings, young plants can be planted one at a time in separate cups.
Diseases and Pests
Indoor chrysanthemums often suffer from invasions of the spider mite and aphids that feed on cellular juices. A plant affected by these pests withers, dries, and discards foliage. You can get rid of parasites with the help of insecticides (Fitoverm, Actellik). In violation of the rules of care, home chrysanthemums are often affected by various types of rot. The development of these diseases is usually indicated by gray-brown, brown and brown-black spots on the leaves and inflorescences. Treatment is carried out using fungicidal and copper-containing drugs.
If the chrysanthemums initially turn yellow, and then turn black and drop leaves, this may indicate the development of Septoria. Treatment involves the use of drugs such as Fundazole, Hom, Bordeaux fluid.
To indoor chrysanthemum for a long time pleased with lush flowering, it is necessary to adhere to simple recommendations. So, experienced plant growers recommend timely removal of dried old inflorescences and leaves from the bushes. Another secret of long flowering is the timely removal of excess buds and inflorescences. Observations show that their excessive amount negatively affects the quality and duration of flowering of chrysanthemums.
For how to properly care for chrysanthemum in a pot, see the next video.