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Rules for planting and caring for amorphophallus at home

The unusual scent of amorphophallus attracts insects Despite the exotic appearance, many types of amorphophallus do not require special efforts from the grower when growing and caring for them. Several dozen varieties of these tropical plants can be seen in the greenhouses of botanical gardens and even at home..

As a houseplant, amorphophallus can give its owner an unpleasant surprise. All members of the genus are pollinated by insects, which are attracted by the putrid smell of the plant’s flowers. The “aroma” acquires its maximum strength at night, gradually weakening by the end of flowering.

But the intensity of the unpleasant odor and its duration in different types of amorphophallus varies. Therefore, only a few varieties are suitable for growing at home, which can be found in specialized stores under the general commercial name “voodoo lily”. The flowers of the amorphophallus in this case are just as attractive and large, but almost odorless..

The voodoo lily flower does not smell too strong The main prerequisites for successful cultivation are:

  • the presence of loose fertile soil;
  • creation of penumbra;
  • constant feeding during the appearance of the amorphophallus flower and leaves;
  • pest prevention;
  • compliance with temperature and humidity conditions during the growing season and dormancy.

Temperature regime for home amorphophallus

For most species, the optimal daytime temperature is around 22-25 ° C. It can be slightly cooler indoors at night, up to 19 ° C. For example, often grown as homemade amorphophallus, cognac adapts perfectly to indoor living in temperatures between 20 ° C and 25 ° C. But there are also exceptions:

  1. For amorphallus kiusianus from southern Japan, air heated to 25 ° C becomes critical. In the heat, the plant quickly withers foliage, shortens the duration of flowering.
  2. And amorphophallus bulbifer plants are more hardy and grow well and bloom at 15-30 ° C.

Soil mix and feeding for amorphophallus

For rapid development, the plant needs minerals and nutrients.The rapid growth of a powerful inflorescence and the subsequent appearance of the leaf and children should be provided with a high content of mineral and nutrients. From this calculation, they compose the soil for a guest from the tropics..

The density of the potting mix depends on the type of homemade amorphophallus. For plants that naturally grow in climates with severe seasonal changes, a small amount of clay is included in the soil composition. These species also include the common domestic amorphophallus varieties A. muelleri, A. paeoniifolius and A. prainii. They are unpretentious, but if the soil is too dense, a lack of oxygen and root decay begins. Unfortunately, this is difficult to notice right away, since growth is supported by the nutrients of the tuber..

It is recommended to add to the soil mixture for a houseplant amorphophallus:

  • dolomite flour, which will enrich the mineral composition of the soil;
  • vermiculite and sphagnum moss to create structure.

But even with an abundance of organic matter in the finished soil, rapidly developing plants need constant feeding. For amorphophallus, fertilizers with a predominance of phosphorus are preferred, for example, in a ratio of 30:15:15 to nitrogen and potassium.

Observing the plant, you can choose the correct fertilization regime, as a result of which, by the dormant period, the tuber will not waste its strength, but will grow and increase its weight.

Planting amorphophallus tubers

Growing amorphophallus at homeThe development of roots on a home amorphophallus begins in the upper part of the tuber, therefore, when planting, the corm is significantly deepened. The growth of the root system horizontally located under the soil is very intensive and stops only when the top of the amorphophallus flower or its leaf appears above the soil surface.

For planting children and bulbs formed on a leaf of amorphophallus bulbous, shallow containers are used. Large adult tubers, especially those plants that regularly bloom, need a more spacious container.

Large tubers of the plant are planted in a spacious containerTo ensure active flowering and facilitate the care of amorphophallus, as in the photo, the size of the pot is selected depending on the caliber, type and weight of the tuber:

  1. If the pot is not deep enough, the growing tuber may deform or rot..
  2. A narrow planting container prevents the initial development of roots, so the pot is chosen with a diameter of at least twice the size of the corm.

At the bottom of the container, a powerful drainage layer is necessarily made, which helps to remove excess moisture and prevents the root system from rotting. It is better to use expanded clay or pieces of steamed bark as drainage. Sand in this case is not desirable due to possible compaction during watering.

Amorphophallus care at home

The flower appears firstOnly a few species of amorphophallus do not have a dormant period, the rest of the voodoo lilies need rest after the leaf dies off. This is due to the peculiarities of the climate in the homeland of the plant..

Young, not yet flowering specimens can be in “hibernation” from 3 to 7 months a year, but as soon as the tuber ripens, the dormancy time is significantly reduced. If flowering, which begins in spring, opens the growing season, then its completion falls on August or September. In some species, growth retardation or true “hibernation” occurs after the withering of the amorphophallus flower. This happens when the flowers are successfully pollinated, berries begin to develop in their place, and the leaves do not show up. If the inflorescence is removed, after a while a strong stalk will appear above the ground, crowned with a dissected leaf..

Leaf wilting means that it’s time to make seasonal changes in caring for amorphophallus at home..

After removing the inflorescence, a stalk with a dissected leaf appearsTo prepare the plant for the dormant period:

  • limit watering;
  • exclude additional feeding;
  • reduce the temperature of the content by 5–7 ° C;
  • create conditions so that the tuber during the dormant period does not dry out or, conversely, does not rot.

When the first signs of activity appear on the corm, watering and feeding are resumed. When the amorphophallus flower grows, leaves appear, the soil in the pot should be constantly moderately moist. Top dressing is carried out regularly, at least 1 time per month. In August, fertilizers no longer need to be applied.

Features of the reproduction of the indoor plant amorphophallus

Formation of daughter nodulesIn a vegetative way, home amorphophallus easily reproduce not only in nature, but also in an ordinary apartment. On an adult tuber during the growing season, several daughter nodules are formed, which are separated during transplantation at the beginning of the new season or after its completion..

Formed for independent life, children are easily separated and planted as independent indoor plants of amorphophallus.

From ripe amorphophallus berries, seeds can be extracted for plant propagationSome species produce viable bulbs on their leaves. After falling into the ground, they take root and the next year they take the form of young nodules. Both small children and leafy bulbs take root easily. The main enemy of young plants is drying out. Therefore, it is important to carefully monitor the soil moisture and the condition of the tubers during storage..

Often, when caring for amorphophallus at home, it is possible to obtain ovaries and seeds. Pollination of female flowers is carried out as early as possible, on the first day of flowering. When the berries are ripe, fresh seeds are extracted from them. Due to the thin outer layer, the drying of which threatens the death of the growth rudiment, sowing in sphagnum or a loose slightly acidic substrate is produced without delay, while still wet seeds. Seedlings should be expected in 1-3 weeks..

Pests of amorphophallus tuber

Before storage, the tubers are checked for pests and damage.The main pests for the inhabitant of the tropics are nematode worms and mealybugs. Since the signs of their presence in the soil are already detected by the painful species of plants, prevention should not be neglected:

  1. The soil for planting homemade amorphophallus must be disinfected.
  2. Damaged or diseased tubers are carefully examined and separated from healthy tubers.

Specimens with injuries, scars or warty formations are smoothed to healthy tissue, dried and treated with a broad-spectrum pesticide.

Since pesticides and other chemical plant protection products are harmful to humans, personal safety measures should not be neglected..

Tubers with extensive defects are destroyed. If you do not pay enough attention to the treatment of tubers, even in disinfected soil, re-infection of plants cannot be ruled out, as well as the occurrence of a secondary bacterial infection or colonization of the pot with an additional number of other soil insects and microorganisms..

Video about the indoor plant amorphophallus

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