Schlumberger Christmas flower or Decembrist - maintenance and care
Schlumbergera is a wonderful flower whose buds open in early December and delight us almost all winter. Due to this flowering period, the flower has a second name - Decembrist.
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Decembrist's flowers often fall into the soul and many flower growers try to possess this plant, but in order to see it blooming it is necessary to follow certain recommendations for caring for the plant.
Decembrist care after purchase
First of all, you need to make sure that the flower is healthy. To do this, it is quarantined for 2 weeks separately from other plants.
During this time, he also undergoes acclimatization in the room where he was brought.
After which, making sure that everything is in order with the plant, it must be eliminated from the peat in which it grows.
To do this, pick up a pot 5 cm larger in diameter from the one in which it was purchased and carefully transplant it from the purchased soil.
When transplanting, it is necessary to completely eliminate the roots of peat.
To do this, it is either soaked in warm water, if it is summer, or by carefully combing the roots with a toothbrush, they relieve them of peat.
Having got rid of store peat and increasing the volume of soil, further care for the Decembrist will consist of:
- Weekly pest inspections.
Important! When doing the first transplant, it is necessary to inspect the root system well so that it is not infected with the fungus due to improper care.
Usually, among the fans of this plant, you can find many common species that are sold in flower shops of the country:
- Schlumbergera Buckley - this Decembrist has elongated segments hanging down. Growing, it becomes an ampel plant. It blooms with bright pink flowers that appear on the annual growth of leaves. Each individual flower consists of three tiers of petals and the stamens protrude quite strongly beyond the petals.
- Truncated Schlumbergera - this species has denticles along the edge of the leaf plate, flowers appearing at the ends of the stems are slightly deflected to the side and have different colors of buds:
- Decembrist Gertner - it is large in size with rather fleshy leaf plates; in an individual segment, the length can be 7 cm. The color of the buds is very diverse.
- Schlumbergera Russeliana - the branches of this bush reach 75 cm in length. Leaf plates are flat and clearly visible veins. Large flowers with sharp edges of the petals.
Such a variety has appeared due to the efforts of various breeders.
Actually any kind of Decembrist is an epiphytic plant that brings peace and tranquility to the house where it lives. His homeland is considered the moist forests of South America, where the flower grows on broken trees or at their foot. Since summer comes in tropical forests when December is in our latitudes, then the flowering on the window behind which the blizzard walks is very beautiful.
This plant is popularly considered a kind of filter of negative emotions, therefore, probably, it grows so well in crowded places. Or maybe there simply isn’t a grower who can “love” a plant almost to death. Indeed, excessive care can also badly affect the Decembrist, as well as its absence.
Air temperature is an important element in growing a flower.
Depending on the time of year, the flower makes various demands on this indicator.
- September October - at this time, the flower is at rest and at this time the buds are laying. The temperature of the content is reduced to +15 degrees. But it is worth remembering that at +10 a flower can discard small buds that have appeared;
- November-January - the temperature is within 18-25 degrees of heat;
- February March - there comes a period of rest before the start of the growing season and the temperature should be +15 degrees;
- March-September - the desired temperature is not higher than 30 degrees.
Important! It is necessary to observe this temperature regime, which will guarantee annual flowering.
Humidity does not play a special role. And we must remember that this is a cactus, albeit a forest one. Therefore, a warm shower and spraying is carried out only in the summer months.
Since this is an epiphytic forest cactus, it must be remembered that the flower may not tolerate direct sunlight, and therefore diffused light throughout the year is suitable for it.
It is not necessary to highlight it in the winter, this will be a natural condition.
For good shoot growth and flower buds for the next year.
Choose a place to put
This is a rather not whimsical flower that can be put on a light windowsill without direct sunlight. In the summer, it is better to take it to the open veranda, but also covering it from direct sunlight.
Important! If the windows of the apartment are oriented only to the southerly direction, then in the spring-summer time, the flower must be covered from direct sunlight or placed deep into the apartment.
How it looks in the interior
This is a fairly common plant and it is often presented for Christmas holidays, since it was at this moment that a lot of flowering pots with these plants appeared on the shelves of flower shops.
Since this flower does not have much decorativeness in summer, it will look good in the group of its brothers.
If there are only 1-2 representatives of the Decembrist, then it is better to put them near decorative and deciduous plants to create green mass. Well adjacent to Diefenbachia.
The plant is suitable for various types of interior, as it is universal:
In order for the flower to show itself in all its glory during flowering, one must adhere to the regime that he received when growing in his homeland. That is, four stages of plant development must be performed depending on the time of year:
- March-September - good vegetation in the fresh air without burning sun.
- September-november - a period of complete rest.
- November-January - flowering.
- February March - A period of complete rest, but with rare watering.
Without creating periods of rest, the flower will not bloom at all.
How to care for in winter after flowering
After flowering, the flower is very important to organize the correct period of rest. Therefore, the flower does not water 2-3 weeks.
After this period, watering begins, but very cautious, especially if the apartment has a low air temperature.
Until the flower shows signs of growth, fertilizer should not be applied. In spring, as soon as the active growth of young segments begins, the flower can be transplanted into new soil and begin to fertilize it with nitrogen-containing fertilizers.
In spring, you can take the plant outside, if the night temperature does not drop, below +10 degrees.
If the root system appeared from the lower drainage holes in the plant, this clearly indicates that the flower urgently needs a transplant.
To do this, take the right size tank and the necessary soil. Soil can be purchased in a specialized store, or you can compose it yourself by taking the ingredients in equal proportions:
- Sheet earth;
All parts are mixed and kneaded so that there are no large segments. The flower is removed from the old soil and transplanted into a new substrate.
Important! After transplanting, do not water for 3 days, so as not to cause decay of the root system of the Decembrist.
- The pot should be slightly larger than the root system of the flower;
- At the bottom, pour a layer of expanded clay;
- Then we put 3-5 cm. A layer of nutrient earth;
- We put the root system of the flower on this layer and spread the roots in different directions;
- We fill the empty space with prepared ground
- Lightly squeeze the earth around the bush to get rid of voids in the ground;
- The growth point should be at the same level as before the transplant.
Important! You need to follow the sequence of recommendations and be careful with the first watering, without doing it immediately after planting.
Propagating the Decembrist is quite easy. For this, in the warm season, top segments are cut. It is desirable that they be in 2-3 segments. They are not cut, but unscrew by turning clockwise.
With this method, they are least injured, as they are easily separated from the mother bush. Now they are dried for two days and planted in a nutritious and loose substrate.
When planting, the lower segment is buried in the ground at 1/3 of its length. For planting the cuttings, plastic cups with a volume of 100 g are best suited. The soil is poured onto a third of the glass and the prepared stalk is planted.
Important! It is necessary that the soil meets the requirement and be nutritious.
To make the flower look beautiful, it requires pruning, which is carried out annually in the spring.
In early March, it is necessary to unscrew clockwise each last segment of the plant, later two young leaves will appear at this place, and this will give the plant splendor and compactness of the crown.
Also, flowering occurs only on young leafy cuttings.
Cuttings that formed after pruning are used for propagation.
Rejuvenation is done only by strongly overgrown flowers, older than 6 years. In order not to increase its size, the flower is taken out of the pot, 1/3 of the roots are removed and, if possible, the soil in the pot is changed. After landing, the segments are unscrewed leaving only 5-6 pcs. in height. Watering after these manipulations begin only for 4 days.
The plant is watered as the substrate dries in half the pot. This can be determined by the weight of the container itself with the flower or by touching the soil with a finger at a depth of 3 cm.
In August, watering should be reduced so that in the first 2 months of autumn not to water the flower at all.
This, combined with a low temperature, will enable the flower to lay flower buds and bloom for Christmas. It is necessary to select the irrigation regime so that the root system does not dry out, but also is not constantly wet. It is necessary to find the golden mean of equilibrium.
Fertilizers are used depending on the phases of the plant’s vegetation.
In warm time, starting in mid-April, the flower is fertilized with such complex fertilizers, which contain more nitrogen.
In August, you need to spill the flower with potash fertilizer, which will help to plant buds.
During the flowering period from the moment of bud formation, the flower is watered with potassium-phosphorus fertilizers.
The regime of irrigation with fertilizers 1-2 times a month.
Diseases and Pests
Decembrist sometimes due to improper care can suffer from diseases:
Insect pests can also appear on the flower with poor care - a mealybug can come with the flower directly from the store. Therefore, quarantine and complete transplantation in the first 2 weeks after purchase are so important.
Important! If a disease or pest is detected, the flower must be set aside separately from the others and treated with appropriate chemicals.
How to reanimate?
If the flower dies and the cause is not known, the first thing to do is inspect for pests.
If they are, they are disposed of by chemical means.
If they are not identified, the flower is taken out of the ground and inspected by the roots.
Shrunken roots need to be re-grown in any convenient way. Rotting roots are cut and treated with what remains of ashes from deciduous plants.
So that after all the manipulations, the flower comes to its senses more easily and adapts, it must be processed with Zircon.
Common care mistakes
An inexperienced grower can sometimes experience errors in caring for this plant.
Leaf plates shrink
The reason most likely is unregulated watering.
If watering was rarely done, then most likely you just need to increase the amount of water supplied to the plant or increase the frequency of watering itself.
The situation is worse if the flower has been constantly flooded or its pot has no openings for draining excess water after watering.
In this case, the root system was most likely flooded and began to rot. In this case, the flower is re-rooting.
Redness of leaf blades
If this happened in the winter, then the flower is very cold and it needs to increase the temperature of the environment. If this is done, then the flower will return to its original form and turn green.
Buds don't hold on and fall off
After the appearance of the buds, the pot with the Decembrist is strictly forbidden to turn in relation to the sun's rays. If there is a need to transfer it to the house from the street, and there are already buds on the bush, then they put a light mark. This is done in order to put a flower in the room on the same side to the light with which it stood on the street.
Decembrist has not bloomed for more than a year
There can be many reasons, but the first and most likely the most important is the lack of autumn dormancy. It is also important that the pot in which the flower grows is slightly small. If you plant Schluberger in a large-diameter pot, then it will grow roots and begin to bloom only when the roots completely fill the pot.
Answers to popular questions
Florists growing this plant may encounter common questions that arise as the flower misses its flowering period or grows poorly.
Why is it growing poorly?
Poor plant growth can be caused by various reasons:
- Poor soil condition;
- Bay after flowering;
- The death of the roots;
- A small proportion of watering in the summer.
To correct the situation, you need to get a flower from the soil to inspect the root system, if it is in order, then you need to select the capacity according to the size of the root system and offer the flower an appropriate nutrient soil. If there are no roots, for various reasons, the flower needs rooting.
It is necessary to examine the root system, most likely it is lost and the flower does not receive nutrition. The solution is to root the flower again.
How often does it bloom?
The flowering of the Decembrist occurs annually. But this is only if the proper care is organized for him according to the seasons.
Learn more about caring for Decembrist from the video below:
Schlumbergera is not so difficult to care for, as beginner gardeners think about it, and therefore it is very pleasant to have a flowering bush for Christmas, because it creates a festive mood for the people around him. Even wandering around the flower shopping center, where they are sold in large quantities, a festive New Year mood is created.