Cyclamen & Kalanchoe

Cyclamen

 

Cyclamen are traditionally sold during the Christmas season and into the winter as a florist plant.  Most will bloom from mid-November until spring, provided conditions are satisfactory.

 

Most of the blooms are white, red, pink or lavender and appear to hang upside down over the heart-shaped mottled green/gray foliage.

 

Cyclamen prefer cool temperatures and bright indirect light.  Ideal daytime temperatures are 60-65 degrees F. with night temperatures around 50 degrees.  An east window provides adequate light.  High humidity during the winter indoors is also crucial.  To maintain humidity, fill a large plate or broad, shallow pan or tray with water.  Set the cyclamen on an inverted dish, just out of the water.  Pebbles could be placed on a plate, pan or tray with the pot setting on the pebbles.

 

Plants prefer to be kept moist.  Most are planted in a peat moss soil that dries quickly.  Plants can wilt quickly.  Make sure pots have drainage holes.  Repot if drainage holes are not present.  Avoid watering the crown or center of the plant.

 

Fertilize

 

Use 20-20-20, half strength while flowering.

 

After Flowering

 

Feed full strength every 2 weeks while new leaves form.  Reduce water as leaves die.  Do not feed then.  Replant dry corm into new soil and keep corm showing above the soil.  Begin watering again and feeding every 2 weeks.

 

Bud blasting or aborting as well as yellowing leaves result from hot and dry conditions, lack of water or insufficient light.

 

After flowers start fading, gradually withhold water.  When the foliage is withered, remove the “bulb” (actually a tuber) from the soil, clean off all soil from it and store it in unmoistened peat moss or vermiculite in a plastic bag at 50 degrees F.

 

Replant in good potting soil in May or June, keeping the upper half of the tuber above the surface.  Grow that plant in a cool, bright, protected spot outside, with a partial shade during the hottest part of the day, and with the pot sunk in a bed of moist peat moss.

 

Water adequately and feed about twice a month with a complete liquid fertilizer.  Bring indoors before cold weather, and provide full sun and the temperature suggested above.

 



Kalanchoe

 

Kalanchoe blossfeldiana blooms in the winter and is designed to display vividly colored flowers for a very long time with minimal care.

 

Naturally spring flowering plant.  The leaves turn reddish in sunlight and the large flower heads last for many weeks.

 

Temperature

 

The Kalanchoe prefers 68-72 degrees during the day and 50-55 degrees at night.

 

Light

 

East or west facing windowsill from spring to autumn – a south-facing windowsill in winter.

 

Water

 

Make sure to water your plant thoroughly--allowing the surface dry between watering.

 

Humidity

 

Misting is not necessary.

 

Fertilize

 

Feed every 2 weeks with 20-20-20; do not feed while flowering.

 

After flowering care:  Prune the tops and place the pot on a shady windowsill.  Keep the soil nearly dry for a month, then put in a well-lit spot and water normally.

 

Re-Potting

 

Repot every year after spring rest period.

 

Tolerates drought conditions and low light.  Easy to reflower:  cut stem back to first pair of leaves and keep in bright light.