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Akalifa is an extraordinary green shrub that attracts attention with beautiful bright red inflorescences similar to birch catkins.
The flower belongs to the euphorbia family, it does not require complex, but careful care. This article similarly describes how to care for a plant, and also gives recommendations for watering, pruning, breeding techniques and transplanting akalifa at home.
How to care for a flower at home?
Caring for a flower at home requires attention. It must be remembered that gloves should always be worn when caring for a plant, and tools should be processed after work, since the flower is considered poisonous.
The soil for the flower should be light and allow moisture and air to pass through well. The optimal composition for the soil should include:
- Humus and sand.
- The land is leafy.
Everything should be mixed in equal proportions.
The plant prefers a humid and warm climate., for this it is recommended to keep the room temperature from +17 to +26 degrees.
Drafts are forbidden to the flower, it may die!
Akalifa, considered a light-loving plant, needs a bright, but diffused light.
- During the period of solar activity, it is recommended to make a small shade for the flower.
- In the autumn and winter period, it is necessary to add additional lighting so that the daylight hours of the plant are at least ten hours.
The brighter the leaves of the Akalifa, the more light it needs. This applies to variegated varieties that lose their color in the shade.
- In the summer, at high temperatures, the plant should be watered daily (in extreme heat, 2 times a day), it is also necessary to spray the flower.
- The soil in the pot must not be allowed to dry out, and it is recommended to immediately drain the excess water from the pan.
- In the cold season (autumn and winter), the flower should be watered much less frequently (once every three days), excess moisture can lead to disease and death of the plant.
- For irrigation, soft, settled and warm water is recommended.
After watering, the soil should be loosened.
During the active growing season (from the beginning of spring to the end of September), the flower is fed once every 14 days with any fertilizer for flowering indoor plants. It is not recommended to use organic fertilizers, they can burn the roots of the plant.
It is recommended to replant the plant in the spring, while choosing a soil with high acidity. You should not choose a new spacious plant pot until the old one is completely cramped.
If there is a lot of space in the pot, then the plant begins to grow slower or may not bloom at all.
Determining that it's time to transplant a flower is not difficult:
- If the plant's growth has stopped abruptly.
- If there is not enough space in the pot, then the soil begins to dry out quickly.
- Roots may emerge from the bottom hole in the pot.
- When replanting a plant, it is necessary to carefully examine the roots of the plant for decay, and remove all dry, damaged and diseased roots. This must be done very carefully so as not to damage the healthy root system.
- At the bottom of the new pot, it is necessary to lay a layer of expanded clay, on which the Akalifa is placed; when replanting, the earth should be slightly compacted.
- At the end of the procedure, water the plant and put it in the shade for seven days. The transplanted flower must be sprayed daily. When the plant takes root and begins to grow, it can be returned to its original location.
Pruning has a rejuvenating effect on the flower, in order to preserve the decorative appearance of the plant, it is necessary to pinch the top of the shoots. Thus, the lateral buds will grow more actively.
The appropriate period for this procedure is February. After pruning, the height of the stem should not exceed 30 centimeters. To prevent the flower from getting sick, after the procedure, it must be sprayed with water and covered with a film to create a greenhouse effect.
For adult flowers, pruning is recommended annually!
You can propagate a flower in two ways: by seeds and cuttings.
- Seeds... The best time to sow is mid-spring. The temperature for germinating seeds should be at least +24 degrees.
- Cuttings... Cutting must be carried out in early spring according to the following algorithms:
- Prepare tree shoots 10 -12 centimeters long.
- Remove unnecessary leaves and put the cuttings in water, the water level should not exceed 5 centimeters.
- It is recommended to air and spray the cuttings every day.
- After 14 days, as the roots appear, the flower must be planted in the prepared soil.
- In order for the plant to bush, it is necessary to pinch off the upper buds after 1.5 months.
Here you can see a photo of the plant:
Diseases and pests
If the florist is attentive to the flower, then the Akalifa will rarely hurt. If you do not treat the plant properly, then you can face the following problems:
- Falling leaves... The cause of this ailment is the low air temperature in the room. With its increase, the Akalifa will again delight with its rich color.
- The leaves turned yellow... This says that the room where the flower is located has low air humidity.
- Plant growth is accompanied by pallor of leaves.... This problem occurs due to a lack of light in the room.
- Spots appeared on the leaves... The appearance of spots indicates that a fungus has appeared on the flower. To destroy the fungus from the leaves, it is recommended to treat them with fungicide.
- Slow plant growth... This suggests that there is not enough nitrogen in the soil. To restore the lack of nitrogen in the soil, it is necessary to dilute one gram of urea by one liter of water, and water the plant with the resulting solution.
Like many plants, Akalifa encounters harmful insects such as:
You can get rid of the pest as follows:
- Shield... This small insect sucks the life sap from the leaves, stems and fruits of the flower. After its defeat, red or yellow spots remain, and the lesions die off over time. To prevent their appearance, it is necessary to do frequent inspections in late winter and early spring.
It is also recommended to spray the flower with water and do frequent airing. To get rid of the scale insect, it is collected, and the affected areas are cut off and treated with chemicals (for example: Actellik, Fitoferm or Arrivo).
- Aphid... This pest occurs on the plant much more often than all others. In the fight against it, a soap solution helps.
For 1 liter of water, it is necessary to dilute a piece of laundry soap, and then treat the affected areas of the plant.
- Scorms... It is not easy to get rid of such a pest, for this it is necessary to take complex measures.
First, you need to wipe the leaves of the flower with soapy water to remove the wax coating.
You will also need chemical treatment, such as: Fitoferm, Metaphos, etc.
When processing a flower, you cannot wipe the leaves with one cotton swab, so you can transfer the insect to unaffected areas.
There are many varieties of this plant, so it's not difficult to find the one that you like. And proper care of the flower will help to get a lush blooming Akalifa all year round. To do this, it is enough to monitor the health of the flower and get rid of pests in time.
We offer you to watch a video about the features of the care and reproduction of akalifa: