Decembrist is a fairly popular houseplant. But few know its real name - Schlumbergera (Zygocactus). The Decembrist - like Rozhdestvennik, Dekabrina, Christmas cactus - is just a nickname given by ordinary people.
Schlumbergera belongs to the Cactus family and is known for the fact that it does not have thorns, but this species blooms in the cold. It blooms profusely and beautifully, pleasing to the eye, when the rest of the plants are at rest.
There are several types of Decembrist. They differ not only in the appearance of the plant itself, but also in the appearance of its flowers. Flowers can be familiar raspberry or red, as well as orange, white, lilac or even coral. In addition, the flowers of the Decembrist can be two-tone.
For a beautiful and abundant flowering, you need to provide the flower with the most favorable living conditions.
Decembrist - a plant with character. He does not like tall pots, so the shallow and wide containers are the best option for growing it - this is due to the fact that the root system of the plant is superficial. Direct sunlight damages the plant, so it is better to put it in the shade. And despite its origin in Brazil, the plant does not like high temperatures - the most suitable temperature range is 17-20 ° C.
When does the Decembrist bloom?
The name of the flower was not given by chance: the plant blooms from late autumn and throughout winter, sometimes it can also bloom repeatedly closer to the beginning of spring. And the point is not that the plant likes low temperatures, but that it comes from the tropical latitudes of Southern Brazil, where the flowering period of plants falls on our calendar winter. In our latitudes, the Decembrist overgrows with buds by the end of November, then they bloom, and the end of flowering occurs at the end of January.
The Decembrist is a perennial plant: its life span can reach 20 years. And as soon as it reaches the age of flowering, it begins to bloom annually throughout all the years of life.
Why do buds die?
But there are times when a flower is provided with all the conditions, but the desired flowering does not occur. Ovaries form on the plant, but suddenly it throws off its unblown buds. This can be influenced by several points:
- moving the Decembrist pot to a new place is the most common reason of all;
- insufficient soil moisture or excess moisture in the soil;
- temperature differences;
- direct exposure to the sun;
- disease or pests on the plant;
- unsatisfactory plant care - not ensuring a normal temperature regime during dormancy, not carrying out planned plant pruning, ignoring annual transplantation and soil depletion.
How to prevent loss?
In order not to witness how the flowers of the Decembrist fall, you need to provide the plant with proper care.
As soon as the buds started on the Decembrist, the pot should not be moved, shaken, and generally somehow disturbed. Until the moment when the buds open, you need to leave him alone in the place where he stands. The pot can only be rotated lightly at the stage of ovary buds in order to achieve their uniform appearance. Otherwise, buds can appear only on one side of the plant.
Care must be taken to monitor soil moisture in the pot. During dormancy, the frequency of watering can be only 1 time in 2 weeks. But during the flowering period, you need to ensure that the soil does not dry out. Watering is at a time when the soil is just beginning to dry. In this case, the pot does not need to make a swamp.
An excess of watering at low indoor temperatures is especially dangerous. In this case, the roots of the plant can be severely affected. And the fact that it drops buds will be a lesser problem, because the Decembrist can die completely. The soil should always be slightly moist.
The buds dry with a lack of moisture. And in order for the humidity level to be sufficient, the Decembrist can also and should be sprayed during budding and flowering. Through leaves and flowers, the plant absorbs moisture just as effectively as it does with the help of the root system.
Decembrists are contraindicated in drafts, the sun and temperature changes. This should be taken care of not only during the flowering period, but also throughout his life. In the tropics there is no such problem as low temperatures, so the plant reacts negatively to them.
For healthy flowering, it is important to look after the Decembrist not only during this period. So, it will be useful to feed the plant at the end of the flowering period, so that it can restore strength and gather new ones. The best time for feeding is spring and summer. In the spring they feed the Decembrist once a month with half the portion recommended by the manufacturers. This will be enough at the recovery stage after prolonged flowering.
In summer, you can start giving a full dose of fertilizer twice a month. During this period, the Decembrist is gaining energy for the future winter period.