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The Gesnerian family. Homeland Central America. More than 25 species are widespread in nature. All of them are perennial herbaceous plants, with a creeping rhizome (tuberous) and erect or slightly drooping stems. Those. the shape of the bush is usually semi-ample, so Achimenes can be grown in ordinary pots and hanging pots. The leaves are whole, with a jagged edge, dark green in color. Both leaves and stems are covered with fine, velvety pubescence. Flowers with a five-petalled corolla fused at the base into a narrow tube. The color of flowers is very diverse: purple, blue, bright pink, yellow, etc.
Ahimenes is very popular with flower growers for its abundant flowering and undemanding agricultural practices.
Achimenes erect Achimenes erecta is a shrub with erect stems, about 50-60 cm high. The stems are reddish, the leaves are dark green, oblong with a jagged edge, on short reddish petioles. Both stems and leaves are covered with dense short pubescence. The flowers are bright red, do not last long, only 2-3 days, but the flowering itself is abundant and long from mid-summer to autumn. There is the Achimenes erecta 'Tiny Red' cultivar with heart-shaped leaves (like mint leaves).
Achimenes longiflora Achimenes longiflora is a shrub with erect, sometimes drooping stems. The leaves are oblong, with a jagged edge, large, about 8-9 cm long and 3-4 cm wide. Stems and petioles are reddish purple. The flowers are large, about 7 cm in diameter with a corolla, the tube is about 5 cm long. The flowers are lilac, with a white throat, there are varieties with pure white flowers (Achimenes longiflora 'Hanging Gardens').
On sale mainly there is only Achimenes hybrid Achimenes hibridia - with different colors of flowers, mainly has a semi-ampel shape (at first it grows as a bush, then the shoots droop).
Temperature: Moderate or warm, during the growing period at least 17 ° C, optimally 22-24 ° C. After flowering, the achimenes is pruned, and the nodules are removed to winter storage at rest, and stored at a temperature of at least 7 ° C until about February.
Lighting: Bright light shaded from direct sunlight in summer during hot hours of the day. Direct sunlight possible in the morning or evening.
Watering: Abundant during the growing season. For the next watering, the soil should dry out in the upper half of the pot, but not dry out completely. After flowering (in September, October), watering is reduced, and then completely stopped.
Fertilizers: 1.5 months after the germination of fresh seedlings in the spring, fertilizing is carried out with fertilizers for indoor flowering plants, every two weeks (fertilizers: "rainbow", "fertika-lux", "uniflor-bud", etc.)
Air humidity: Achimenes does not like spraying leaves, but the air must be sufficiently humid, arrange wide trays of water or spray well the nearby plants.
Transfer: Nodules taken from winter storage are germinated in boxes in nutrient soil. Good drainage is necessary, and sprinkle the nodules on top with light leafy soil. Germination requires a temperature of 15-18 ° C and moist air. Sprouted nodules are planted in pots. Achimenes has short roots, so the pots should not be deep, but wide enough. A high drainage layer is poured at the bottom of the pot, occupying at least 1/3 of the volume of the dishes. This will protect the plants from overflow. The soil should be loose and nutritious - 3 parts of leafy soil, 1 part of peat, 1 part of sand, also add dry mullein (crumble dry cow cake, take 1 tablespoon per pot), charcoal.
Reproduction: Nodules, cuttings, seeds. When achimenes is propagated by nodules, flowering begins faster than when propagated by cuttings.