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A family of crockworms. Homeland - humid tropical forests of South Asia and Africa, naturalized (took root in the wild) of tropical America. A total of 10 species are known (according to modern taxonomy). In culture, one species:
Gloriosa luxurious Gloriosa superba is a perennial vine with a fleshy rhizome and shoots that require support. The leaves are light green, alternately located or in whorls, narrow-lanceolate, at the end spirally twisted like tendrils. Flowers are solitary, located at the tops of shoots, large. Perianth petals about 10 cm long, bright red, with a yellow wavy edge bent back to the peduncle, there is a variety with yellow flowers. There are six petals, the same number of long stamens with large anthers. Flowering in late summer - early autumn. While the gloriosa is blooming, pollination can be carried out (with a brush, smear over the anthers and then along the stigma of the same flower), and then the fruits are tied - multi-seeded capsules. Once ripe, the seeds can be planted.
Most of the Gloriosa species, previously classified as separate species, are referred to as synonyms of Gloriosa luxurious, these are: Gloriosa rothschildiana, Gloriosa angulata, Gloriosa caerulea, Gloriosa carsonii, etc.
Gloriosa is suitable for landscaping glazed balconies and loggias if they are not located on the north side. A tenacious vine can form a green carpet on the wall if it is light enough. You just need to know that all parts of this wonderful plant are poisonous! Therefore, make sure that your beloved cat does not chew it, and that the leaves and flowers are not cut off or touched by children. Toxic substances are contained in the juice, but are not released into the air, so grow and admire!
Temperature: Gloriosa is quite thermophilic; during the period of growth and flowering, a temperature of about 20-22 ° C is desirable. In the fall, gloriosa begins a dormant period. When it fades, the leaves and the entire aerial part die off. Then the tubers are taken out and placed in dry sawdust, or left directly in a pot with dry soil. You can store tubers at a temperature of about 5-10 ° C, but not higher than 12 ° C (you can in the refrigerator, cellar, basement, if only it is not too humid).
In spring, gloriosa tubers are planted in fresh soil and placed on a windowsill in a warm room. Moisturize slightly, and when sprouts appear, watering is done regularly.
Lighting: Good sunlight, bright ambient light. Shading may be needed only on the southern window on the hottest sunny days in spring and summer (from 11 to 15 hours). Gloriosa can grow on both the east and west windows, but it will be dark on the north.
Watering: Abundant during growth, after the topsoil has dried out. In autumn, when the leaves begin to turn yellow, watering is reduced. During the dormant period, the tubers are not watered.
Fertilizer: From April to the end of July, they are fed with a complex fertilizer for flowering indoor plants (uniflor-bud, fertika-lux). Fertilizers are diluted according to the instructions.
Air humidity: Gloriosa loves humid air, the optimum humidity is 60-70%. When the heating is off, the natural humidity does not drop below 50%, but when the weather is dry and hot in summer, gloriasis must be sprayed. Better in the morning or evening with soft boiled water. It is also necessary to spray during the growth of young shoots until May, while the heating is on and the air in the apartment is rather dry.
Transfer: Transplant the tubers at the end of winter, before the start of growth, since the roots of gloriosa are very fragile and brittle. If you start transplanting after the plant has started to grow, you can easily damage the roots. Therefore, it is better to plant earlier, at the very beginning of February.
Gloriosa tubers are long, fusiform or oblong, similar in shape to carrots or a slingshot, when planting they are placed slightly obliquely, it is possible almost horizontally (with a fork in the slingshot slightly up), so the gloriosa pot should be wide enough (30-35 cm in diameter) but not too deep (20-25 cm). Sprinkle the tubers with a layer of earth about 2-3 cm. When planting, it is important not to damage the blunt, rounded end of the tuber, on which the growth bud is located. Gloriosa does not have eyes, like in potatoes, on the surface of the entire tuber, and damage to a single growth point leads to the death of the tuber. If there are scratches on the tuber, the skin is peeled off, be sure to sprinkle this place with gray or crushed coal so that there is no decay.
You can plant gloriosa tubers vertically, placing the rounded blunt end up, but then the pot should be deep enough, it is at least a 5-7 liter bucket. But in containers that are too deep, the soil dries out for a long time, it is less ventilated and more likely to acidify the soil from long drying after watering.
The soil mixture for planting gloriosa should be nutritious and loose, weakly acidic, pH about 6. The approximate composition of the soil: 1 part of sod land, 1 part of leaf, 2 parts of humus and 1 part of sand, high drainage at the bottom of the pot. If the gloriosa grows quickly, and the pot is small, then, as a last resort, it can be transferred into a larger pot in the summer, preserving an earthen coma, trying not to damage the roots. By the way, you can use garden soil from the beds of cucumbers or tomatoes (where organic matter was introduced), add 2 handfuls of vermiculite or sand, and a handful of pine bark to it.
After planting, two days later, the soil in the pot can be watered, but little by little, so that it has time to dry out properly. And only when a sprout appears, watering is made more abundant. Germination time can be different - from three days to three weeks, it depends on many factors, including the temperature and moisture content of the soil, and the composition of the soil. In heavy clay soil, growth is very slow, in peat soil, faster, but the growing plants very soon use up all the nutrients from the soil, and chlorosis begins, and the flowering is very weak. Therefore, humus is needed as part of the soil. If not, you can use dry mullein (carefully crushed), 3 tbsp. spoons per 1 liter of universal soil.
Reproduction: Gloriosa seeds reproduce quite easily, but bloom only in the third year. Seeds are sown in February in bowls, in a mixture of leafy soil and peat. Cover with a glass or bag (airing several times a day), and maintain the temperature at about 22 -24 ° C. When the seedlings germinate and grow, they are thinned out and transplanted into separate pots.
You can also propagate gloriosa with young nodules. A tuber planted in spring forms new shoots during the season. They can be separated by sprinkling the cuts with crushed coal carefully. But make sure each cut has a growing point. The separated nodules are planted in disinfected and dry soil. Water only after 3-4 days little by little. Plants grown from tubers will flower earlier than plants grown from seeds.
Shaping and garter
Gloriosa grows very quickly, literally before our eyes, but its stems are rather fragile, easily break off, so you need to tie up gloriosa to a support immediately, as it grows. She herself is not able to firmly cling to the support, the antennae are weak. One single stick stuck into the pot will not be enough, besides, sticking it into the pot without looking, you can injure the tuber. The best support for gloriosa stems is a plastic mesh with a large mesh. A bamboo lattice is also suitable.
It is better not to put the gloriosa support in the pot, because if disturbed, it can injure the roots inside the pot. You can stretch a string along the perimeter of the balcony vertically from the railing to the ceiling with a pitch of 10-15 cm and tie the shoots of gloriosa to it.
You do not need to pinch gloriasis, it branches itself, although not much. To stimulate branching and, accordingly, increase the number of probable buds (gloriosa blooms at the tops of the shoots), the young shoot of gloriosa should not be pinched or cut off, but when it grows 70-80 cm, bend it to the ground, i.e. redirect the tip of the shoot down. Use woolen thread or jute for the garter, but not wire.
Problems of growing gloriosa
Gloriosa grows slowly and does not bloom - if there is not enough light, if the planted tuber was weakened or damaged, if the tubers were stored at too low temperature. Gloriosa can also stop growing, if damaged, break the stem, in this case, it begins to grow tubers, but not leaves.
Young shoots have slowed down growth, the leaves have darkened or wilted - with sharp temperature fluctuations (too hot or cold). From over-watering when the soil dries for a long time.
Leaves turn yellow or turn brown at the tips - if too dry or insufficient watering.
The stems are soft and lethargic, the leaves drooped and turned yellow at the base - excessive watering can lead to rotting of tubers. To prevent this from happening, provide the plant with good drainage and water as the soil dries.
Of the pests, gloriasis is more often affected by the scabbard and aphids, which can be dealt with by watering and spraying with Confidor or Aktara preparations.