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The pandanus family. The genus has about 700 species, common in tropical countries, mainly in Africa and Madagascar. The habitat is quite wide, but it is mainly coastal regions, tropical swamps, drained lowlands, even coral reefs, less often savannahs, rocky slopes and mountain forests.
Pandanus roofing Pandanus tectorius is widespread in culture - it has many varieties and subspecies. For example, we know Pandanus tectorius Parkinson ex Du Roi under the outdated names Pandanus Veitch Pandanus veitchii and Pandanus Sander Pandanus sanderi. It is native to Australia from Cape York to Port Macquarie, Indonesia and the Pacific Islands.
General description of the species: in nature, these are trees from 4 to 12 m in height with a thorny trunk and many aerial roots that support the trunk of the plant as props. Leaves are belt-shaped, from 90 to 150 cm in length, in apartment conditions at least 60 cm in an adult plant. They have sharp jagged edges that scratch the skin. Flowers are dioecious: male - small, fragrant, bloom only one day. Female flowers are collected on the cob, fragrant, forming large (up to 20 cm) spherical fruits resembling pineapples. In nature, roofing pandanus grows along rivers, its seeds are adapted for long (many months) swimming in water, until they are nailed to fertile soil by the current, or crabs are taken away. Another of the adaptations of this amazing plant to life in the coastal zone or on reefs - in mature trees, the lower part of the trunk dies off over time,only long roots remain - stilts, allowing you to stand "knee-deep" in water in the literal sense.
Pandanus in an apartment requires a lot of space and looks spectacular only as a single plant. In culture, variegated forms with cream or white stripes are most common.
Temperature: In the warm season, normal, optimal for growth around 20-24 ° C. In winter, pandanus grows well in normal room conditions, but it feels better in cool conditions - optimally 15-16 ° C, at least 12 ° C. Watering is reduced when the temperature drops!
Lighting: Pandanus likes a bright place with bright, diffused light and protection from direct sunlight at midday. In winter, when kept in a warm room, the lighting should also be very good. Due to the fact that the size does not always allow this plant to be placed on the windowsill, it needs additional lighting in the room with lamps.
Watering: Abundant in spring and summer, but the soil should have time to dry in the upper half of the pot. Since autumn, watering is reduced depending on the temperature, the soil in the pot should dry out almost completely. The pandanus does not tolerate excess water, especially in winter, during dormancy, when kept cool. Water for irrigation needs soft, boiled or filtered water. The paradox of pandanus in an apartment is that strong, resistant to high soil moisture, stilted roots do not have time to form. Only large old plants can tolerate high dampness. In addition, potted roots are poorly supplied with oxygen in a constantly damp environment, and therefore can rot.
Another problem - pandanus is one of the few plants that is critical of excess fluoride in water - dry brown spots form along the edges of the leaves, which are sometimes mistaken for low humidity. If spraying doesn't work, it's worth considering water quality.
Fertilizer: Top dressing with liquid fertilizer for indoor plants from March to August every two weeks.
Air humidity: Optimum humidity not lower than 60%, ideally about 80%. The main problem in apartments is the inability to create such high humidity. Spraying does not help; the ends of the leaves dry out from dryness. You can place the pot on a wide pallet with damp pebbles or expanded clay, turn on the humidifier during the heating season and ventilate the room more often.
Transplant: Young plants are transplanted annually, adults two years later in the spring. Soil - 1 part of sod land, 1 part of peat (or leaf), 1 part of humus and 1 part of sand. Good drainage is required at the bottom of the pot. The soil itself must be loose, so baking powder is added to it: 1 part vermiculite or 1 part coconut chips, you can use small expanded clay 2-3 mm, chopped coconut fiber, small pieces of foam.
Reproduction: With daughter rosettes, when they grow by about 10-12 cm, rooting is quite difficult, therefore it is better to use root formation stimulants, for example, heteroauxin (see preparations). In order for the daughter offspring to be guaranteed to take root, they must be cut off from the mother plant when they grow about 15-17 cm in height.