Caladium is a perennial evergreen plant. The basal leaves of Caladium are shield-shaped or heart-shaped, with beautiful colors and many varieties. The buds are green with the green-white upper part and shell-like; fleshy inflorescences.
Underground tubers, oblate, poisonous, numb mouthpiece after ingestion. Caladium is native to the Amazon River basin in South America. It likes high temperature, high humidity, and a semi-shady environment. It is not tolerant of low temperatures and frost and snow. It requires loose soil, fertility, and good drainage.
The leaves of Caladium are beautiful in color and there are many varieties. They are suitable for greenhouse cultivation and viewing. Summer is the main viewing period for Caladium, and the colorful leaves are full of coolness.
In autumn, the leaves gradually become chaotic. In winter, the leaves are yellow and enter the dormant period. In late spring and early summer, they begin to sprout and grow. May to September is its vigorous growth period.
Caladium is native to tropical regions such as Brazil, Thailand, and Guinea. In the early 20th century, China introduced two old-fashioned varieties, and more new varieties were introduced after the 1970s.
It likes high temperature, humidity, and half shade, but it is also resistant to strong sunlight. It likes slightly acidic soil with good drainage and water retention. The root system is shallow and well developed.
Morphological characteristics of Caladium
Leaves: The basal leaves are shield-shaped, arrow-shaped or heart-shaped, with beautiful color and many varieties; petioles are smooth, 15-25 cm in length, 3-7 times as long as the leaves;
The leaf surface is covered with transparent or opaque spots of various colors, the back is pink-green, halberd-ovate to ovate-triangular, the apex is narrow and convex, posterior lobes are about 1/2 of the anterior lobes, oblong ovoid, obtuse, 1 Combination of /3-11/5, deep, sharp or obtuse, the lower part of the anterior lobes I grade lateral veins protrude horizontally, the upper 2 pairs rise, the congregating veins are slightly away from the edge, the posterior lobes base veins intersect at 60 degrees angle.
Plant stem: underground tuber, oblate, poisonous, numb mouthpiece after ingestion;
Petals: The stalk of the inflorescence is shorter than the petiole, 10-13 cm long (in the estuary specimen). The bud tube of the buddha flame is oval, 3 cm long, green on the outside, green and white on the inside, and evergreen and purple at the base; the eaves are about 5 cm long, convex, and white. Flesh inflorescence.
Caladium growth environment
The hot, high-humidity, and semi-shady environment of Caladium lilac, not tolerant to low temperature and frost and snow, requires the soil to be loose, fertile, and well-drained.
The suitable temperature of Caladium is 20-30℃, and the optimum temperature during the growth period from June to October is 21-27℃; the optimum temperature during the dormancy period from October to June of the following year is 18-24℃.
No less than 10℃ at night, keep 10℃ during dormancy, do not like strong light, shade degree is 30-40%.
Caladium is fond of clay soil. It is made by mixing five parts of clay soil, two parts of hummus soil, and three parts of sand.
Germination of new leaves is more difficult. When the temperature is higher than 30℃, new leaves germinate quickly, the leaves are soft and thin, and the foliage viewing period is shortened.
During the dormant period of tubers, if the room temperature is lower than 15°C, the tubers are extremely perishable. The soil requires fertile, loose, and well-drained leaf mulch or peat soil.
Too much moisture or drought in the soil is detrimental to the growth of Caladium leaves, and the tubers are easy to rot if they are too humid.
Caladium likes to scatter light, the leaves are prone to burns when exposed to the hot sun, the leaf color is fuzzy, the veins are dim, and the appreciation is poor.
Cautions for Caladium
Pay attention to pruning
If you want Caladium to grow more vigorously, you must pay attention to pruning in addition to normal care. Cut off the old leaves, yellow leaves, and too dense branches in time, so that new branches can grow. In addition, pay attention to pruning the root system when changing pots, and cutting off old roots and rotten roots is more conducive to growth.
Watch out for pests
Diseases and insect pests of Caladium are rare, and care should be taken to protect the tubers, which are prone to dry rot during storage. Once they are found, spray germicides in time. Leaf spot disease is prone to occur during the growth period, so it is necessary to focus on prevention and spray bactericidal agents every month to protect the healthy growth of plants.
April to August is the peak season for the growth of Caladium, and sufficient nutrients are guaranteed at this time. After September, the leaves will gradually wither. At this time, reduce watering and stop fertilizing, so that the tubers can survive the winter safely in the soil. Wait until the spring flowers bloom the next year and continue to grow.