Pachistahis - the "golden ear" of the rainforest
Among the exotic plants that inhabit our window sills, pachistachis stands out for its original flowering. The inflorescences of the plant resemble spikelets, for which it received the popular names “golden ear” and “golden shrimp”.
Is it easy to grow pachistachis and what difficulties can arise with its maintenance?
Homeland of Pachistachis
Inhabitant of rainforests, pachistachis actively inhabits South America, the Caribbean. The plant can be found in East India and on the east coast of Australia, where the subtropical climate dominates.
The name "pachistasis" is composed of two Latin words: pachys - "fat" and stachys - "spike". The plant belongs to the evergreen species, in nature grows up to 1 meter. On straight shoots there are large leaves (10–12 cm) oval in shape with pointed tips.
Particular beauty is given to the plant by long (10 cm) spike-shaped inflorescences, in which the bracts are painted in saturated yellow and orange tones. Corollas are white.
The time of flowering lasts up to 12 days. Then they fall off, but the bracts remain, preserving the beautiful appearance of the plant. On one bush of pachistasis, up to 20 inflorescences can appear.
The main types
About 12 plant species have been discovered and studied today. Only two species belong to domesticated biologists: yellow and red pachistachis.
Pachistachys yellow (Pachystachys lutea)
Pachistachis yellow is a shrub with erect stems up to 1 meter high. In adults, the lower parts of the stems are lignified. The leaves are quite large with a length of up to 15 cm and a width of up to 5 cm.
Spikelets are painted yellow. This is the most popular species, actively bred by flower growers.
Pachistachis red (Pachystachys coccinea)
Pachistachis red differs from its yellow counterpart in larger sizes and an original form of inflorescence. The shrub can reach a height of 2 meters.
His bracts are painted in green tones, but the flowers do not get lost among them, like in the yellow species, but, on the contrary, rush up with thin beautiful red panicles.
Rules for the care of pachistachis at home
A tropic inhabitant needs the same conditions that naturally form in their habitats, that is, moist and warm air, good light and nutritious soil. The owner is required to create these conditions so that the flower grows and feels great.
It will be worthwhile to recall that various signs and superstitions are associated with pachistachis:
- If a healthy flowering plant suddenly begins to dry and fall off the flowers, they believe that this is how it warns the hosts about the imminent bad news.
- The bright color of the flowers, on the contrary, portends joyful news.
- Pachistachis recently brought into the house can increase passion between spouses. It positively affects family relationships, creates a positive atmosphere in the house.
- It is noticed that next to this plant, cholerae become calm, peaceful, complacent.
Realists who do not believe in mysticism will say to these assumptions that you just need to properly care for the plant, and then nothing will fall from it. Experts authoritatively claim that the flower does not have any healing properties, but with its bright appearance it improves the psychological situation in the house.
Accommodation in the house and lighting
For placement of pachistachis, eastern and western windows are suitable. However, it must be shaded from direct sunlight, because in the tropical forest the sun breaks through the foliage of tall trees in portions, and does not fall upon the flower with all its strength.
In winter, despite the relative dormant period, it is important to keep the plant long daylight hours.
The temperature regime for spring and summer is 23 ... 25 ° C. Starting from mid-autumn and all winter, the flower feels great at 16 ... 18 ° C.
Watering and humidity
Humidity and watering are parameters that should be strictly adhered to when caring for pachistachis. High humidity and constantly wet soil - these are the conditions for the successful development and flowering of a plant.
In spring and summer, you need to water the flower every day, in winter to reduce the frequency of watering, but make sure that the soil does not dry out much. Bad for plants and stagnation of water.
Reproduction of pachistachis
In the spring, when pruning is carried out, you can deal with its reproduction. The most effective and affordable way to propagate the "golden ear" is cuttings.
How to cut pachistachis? The material is obtained from the tops of the shoots. Cut them so that there are 2 or more internodes on the stem. Then the cuttings are placed in water, regularly sprayed and wait for the roots to appear.
How to root fast? The cutlery can be covered with a jar or film, not forgetting to air every day, and then the roots will appear faster.
The cuttings are cut, took root, it is time to translate it into a pot of soil. For the first place of residence, plants take a pot with a diameter of 12 cm.
Experienced gardeners are advised to plant 2-3 cuttings in such a small pot, and then the plant will bloom magnificently.
The depth of the pot should also be small. Ideally, there is no difference between diameter and depth or it is insignificant. In the first years of transplantation, the capacity is increased by 1-2 cm.
Important! The size of the pot can answer the question of why pachistachis does not bloom. In a clearly large capacity for it, the plant does not produce peduncles.
This tropical resident loves loose soil, so that moisture and oxygen freely pass into it and saturate the plant with the necessary substances.
The ratio of components in the soil should look like this: 1 part of peat, 1 part of large river sand, 1 part of humus and 3 parts of turf land.
Important! Full renewal of the soil should be carried out every 2 years.
Possible care problems
All the problems that can be encountered when growing pachistachis are associated with improperly organized care. For example, it’s easy to answer why pachistachis leaves curl: the humidity is clearly low.
There are other difficulties:
- Leaves fall. Most often, this is the reaction of the plant to drafts or a poor regime of watering. By eliminating one of these negative factors, you can stop the loss of leaves.
- Exposure of the lower part of the trunk. Loss of decorativeness can be corrected by trimming the plant.
- With a lack of light shoots are very elongated, and the leaves become small. Trim the elongated stems and rearrange the flower in the right place with good lighting.
This tropical guest has amazing resistance to various diseases. If he is properly looked after, he will remain healthy and flowering for a long time.
Sometimes pachistachis leaves fade and fade. This problem has three causes: poor watering, lack of nutrients and lack of light.
It is possible to reveal what exactly leads to such a reaction only experimentally, alternately correcting the rules of care.
From intense heat, the leaves begin to turn yellow and dry at the ends. In such weather, the plant must be shaded or rearranged in a cooler room. When the temperature drops below the mark of +14 ° C, the flower dies.
The pests of pachistachis are the same as those of other indoor flowers: mealybug, whitefly, spider mite and scale insect.
A mealybug is noted on the plant with fluffy white coating on the leaves. The appearance of small white dots on the lower plate of the leaf signals the arrival of whiteflies.
The spider mite leaves its marks on leaflets and stems in the form of a thin spider web.
Having noticed one of these pests, the flower pot needs to be separated from other plants, thoroughly rinse all the leaves and stems with soap and water.
If this procedure does not help, use special medications (Actellik, Karbofos, Aktara). They are bred in water and sprayed with a flower.
Video about the care and reproduction of pachistachis: