Anthurium is a plant native to tropical regions where the climate is perpetually humid and very hot. For its well-being at home you have to try to recreate this type of habitat, especially during the winter when the heating system is active and the air can become very dry for people. In this case, the ambient humidity can be increased by frequently vaporising the foliage of the Anthurium with demineralised water, an operation to be avoided during flowering.
In summer it should be watered abundantly, but without exaggeration, the important thing is that the soil in the pot never stays dry. A good trick is to place expanded clay or gravel in the saucer, in this way the roots will never be in direct contact with the water but this will always be available to the plant, even simply as water vapor. To protect the roots you can also use moss to be kept constantly slightly moist.
for watering is ideal to use rainwater, while dusting the leaves with a damp cloth will allow them to breathe better.
How to Treat Anthurium
Keeping Anthurium between 16 and 18°C and ensuring it has the right amount of moisture is one of the few treatments this plant requires. It is sensitive to cold and, in particular, to air currents: in the summer, therefore, life in the open is welcome, but in the autumn, when the temperature changes start to be abrupt, it is better to repair it.
The temperature, from October to late spring, should not disturb the vegetative rest, settling at around 13 ° C: so you avoid subsequent flowering sparse and stunted. Every two and a half years or three L’Anthurium may require a larger pot, at least when the roots come out from the holes below the pot. In this case, it is best to decant, preferably at the end of winter, and you can use the same soil as the orchids, soft and porous and with an ideal pH.
The flowers may need a guardian, as the weight tends to fold the stem. It is a herbaceous plant, so it is not pruned, but it is better to eliminate the dried and yellowed leaves. Finally, to obtain new seedlings simply divide the head when repotting, taking care that each bud corresponds to at least one group of roots.
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Fertilizing the Anthurium
Anthurium has a strong and thickened root system, which originates from its semi-epiphytic nature, and uses it to draw nourishment from the mineral salts dissolved in the water it absorbs. Although home-grown species are generally soil-based, radical portions can remain on the surface and capture water vapour which contributes to the supply of necessary substances.
Rainwater also meets the need for nutrients thanks to the particular shape of the aerial parts or special devices that allow you to store the water absorbed. Home-grown Anthurium can be fertilised from April to September with liquid fertiliser every two weeks. The doses can be diluted more than those given in the package. The fertilizer must contain both the macro-elements (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium) and the microelements, i.e. iron, manganese, zinc, copper and boron.
Anthurium, on the other hand, is damaged by calcium. For this reason it is advisable to always use rainwater for watering, or demineralized water.
Exposure, major diseases and remedies
Anthurium is capable of prolonged flowering as long as it never lacks light, which is strictly diffused and never direct. Beware of windows: never forget that glass accentuates irradiation. Exposure too much in the shade, on the contrary, adversely affect the flowering, in summer and in the open, however, a position not too sunny, refreshed by the presence of foliage will be ideal.
As for the diseases, the major problems come from the cochineal which manifests itself with a white cloud of filaments on the lower page of the leaf. The intersections should be checked periodically and at the first sign of infestation, you can remove the insect and its honeydew with a cotton ball and alcohol. Another enemy of Anthurium is Tripid. The tiny insect pierces the leaf, sucks the sap and deforms the lamina of flowers and leaves.
The fight can only be preventive or based on colour traps, inserting blue cards soaked in glue between the leaves. Finally, an airy substratum, which does not remain too humid, will preserve the structure of the roots, stimulating their activity and development and preventing the proliferation of fungal parasites.
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