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Family of polypodiae (millipede). It is a genus of pronounced epiphytes that grow high on tree trunks in the rainforest, and it also occurs in a zone with a temperate climate. Homeland - South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, Australia, New Guinea. There are more than 15 species in total.
Platycerium Platycerium has a short rhizome, from which branch off bearded roots and two types of leaves. The first ones are basal, not spore-bearing, serve to protect the roots from drying out, in most species they are wide, like saucers, like umbrellas cover aerial roots. In addition, barren wai are ferns' collectors of nutrients. Rotten leaves, moss, dead insects, etc. fall into a trap. Over time, all of this decays and forms the nutrient medium that provides the fern with the necessary minerals. The second type of leaves is spore-bearing, usually forming a kind of rosette of spreading leaves.
Some species of Platitzerium grow in separate specimens. Other species form colonies when several bushes form on one long rhizome, in which case many plants occupy a fairly wide area, forming a dense green carpet on tree trunks. Such colonies are also formed from the germination of spores, they crumble and are carried by the wind to the nearest trees, under favorable conditions, in warmth and moisture, the spores germinate, forming dense thickets. All species of the genus Platizerium differ somewhat in the type of photosynthesis and the need for high humidity, this is due to the fact that in nature they occupy different niches in the tiers of the tropical forest.
As a house plant, two species are grown: the magnificent Platycerium superbum and the Platycerium bifurcatum Platycerium bifurcatum. Both species grow high on trees or in crevices of rocks, only the two-forked Platycerium often forms clumps, groups, and the magnificent Platycerium is more of a solitary plant. Both have a high need for fresh air, do not tolerate smoke, air stuffiness, high air temperatures with humidity below 60%. Under favorable conditions, they form bushes with a leaf span of 60 to 100 cm. They require block cultivation in hanging baskets.
Platitzerium - care and cultivation
Temperature: Platycerium is a rather thermophilic fern - the process of intensive growth at a temperature of 18-25 ° C, in winter 15-16 ° C is optimal. Does not tolerate cold drafts. Although in nature the Platycerium tolerates more stringent conditions - lowering the temperature to + 5 ° C, there is no need for an ordinary florist to risk such a rare plant.
Lighting: If your bathroom has a window that provides enough light, then Platitzerium will decorate it with dignity. This fern is placed in a semi-shady place, in diffused light, more precisely, protection from the sun is needed from 11 to 17 hours. In winter, the higher the room temperature, the better the lighting.
Watering: Platitzerium requires not so much abundant watering as high humidity. Watering is best done by immersion, lowering the basket or block with the plant in a container of water - the roots should not dry out too much, the immersion should not take more than 10 minutes. Water for irrigation is only soft, at room temperature; if necessary, it should be boiled or softened with means for preparing aquarium water. Watering frequency depends on the temperature - the hotter the more often.
Air humidity: Platiterium requires high humidity - about 70-80%. This is the most important factor and can be adjusted either with a humidifier or by placing the plant block over a very wide pan of moist sphagnum moss. Do not spray the leaves once again: firstly, they are covered with small hairs, and water droplets roll off them, and secondly, the humidity of the air during spraying does not increase for a long time and can be considered as a temporary measure: when spraying, use a very fine spray and do not allow the moisture to remain on the leaves in drops.
Top dressing: Since at home nutrients do not crumble from the ceiling with withered leaves, the Platizerium must be periodically fed. Especially if the plant grows on a block with little or no substrate. The best option is to add orchid fertilizer to your watering water. You can spray a nutrient solution of the same fertilizer over the leaf, spreading it according to the instructions for foliar dressing.
Transfer: This plant needs soil, more precisely a substrate consisting of coarse-fiber peat, or leafy soil, as well as pieces of pine bark and sphagnum moss. If the platycerium does not rest on a piece of bark, then it is advisable to add decayed deciduous trees taken from the forest to the soil. All fractions for planting must be sterilized in the oven (at 200 degrees for at least 30 minutes). You can fix the platycerium on a large piece of pine bark or a block of cork, cover some of the roots with sphagnum moss, and some with coconut fiber. You should not use a lot of moss - it is too moisture-consuming, and the roots, completely covered with sphagnum moss, can suffer from hypoxia. In nature, the roots of the flathorn are covered not with moss, but with basal leaves, under which air passes. It is necessary to fix the platitzerium on the block with a soft plastic material, for example,stripes of cut nylon tights.
Reproduction: Propagated by spores and embryonic buds developing at the roots. However, the reproduction of this fern is only possible for a very skilled grower.
- Leaves turn yellow, brown spots appear on them - too hot, temperatures above 25 ° C require an increase in air humidity. The reason may also be waterlogging of the substrate, too long immersion during watering, poor aeration.
- The leaves turn yellow, the plant grows poorly - the humidity in the room is too low, the proximity of the heating system.
- Leaves are faded, translucent, lethargic - too intense sunlight.
- The leaves are pale or dull, the ends turn yellow or turn brown, the plant does not grow or grows poorly - lack of nutrition, too small or too large a pot, improperly selected substrate.
- Leaves can turn yellow, brown, curl and fall off, young leaves wither and die off - if the room temperature is too low, from exposure to cold drafts, watering with cold water, when watering with hard or chlorinated water.