Like all the genus it belongs to, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora is a succulent plant, highly resistant to drought, which does not like to live in a soil that remains moist for a long time. Despite this, during the hot months it is advisable to water the plant regularly, whenever you notice the soil well dry, especially if you move the pots to the open air.
During the cold months, the watering are to be suspended, even if it is advisable to slightly wet the soil when we notice that the foliage begins to wringe; cultivating the plants in apartment, in fact, we expose them to a warm and very dry climate, which prevents them from having a real period of vegetative rest. If you find a place with cool temperatures, less than 15°C, the plants can remain without watering until spring.
Cultivating the Kalanchoe thyrsiflora
Like all succulents, the Kalanchoe thyrsiflora plant is not very demanding and tends to develop at its best even under non-ideal cultivation conditions. They are plants which, in the wild, develop in southern Africa, in areas with a warm and dry climate. In the zones with very mild winters, with minimum temperatures over the 10°C, they can be cultivated in full soil, whilst in all the rest of Italy, in autumn, they must be placed in a sheltered place, or even in apartment.
They prefer a very well drained soil and fear the excesses of water, which can lead to a rapid rotting of all the foliage. The Kalanchoe develop very compact rosettes of leaves and, during the summer months, produce also short floral stems, which carry several pinkish buds, quite decorative.
If grown in a poorly-lit place, the leaves remain entirely green; if, on the other hand, they are allowed to enjoy at least a few hours of sunshine every day, the edge of the foliage assumes the classic reddish colour.
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Fertilization of the plant
Succulent plants, in general, do not like to have a very nutrient-rich soil; this is because they are very slow-growing plants which, in the presence of excessive amounts of nitrogen, tend to produce vegetation that is not very compact and disorderly. For this reason, it is advisable to avoid supplying Kalanchoe thyrsiflora plants with the classic fertilizers that are given to other indoor plants.
Fertilization is provided from April to September, only once a month, using special fertilizers for succulent plants, poor in nitrogen and very rich in potassium, the amount of potassium can be up to 3-4 times higher than that of nitrogen. If you do not find a suitable fertilizer, you can provide the classic universal fertilizer, but in a dose equal to a third or a quarter of what recommended on the package. In the winter months it is advisable to avoid fertilizing the plants.
Pests and diseases
The Kalanchoe thyrsiflora plants like to stay in bright positions, where they can enjoy at least a few hours of direct sunlight every day, but avoiding the warmer ones, especially during the summer months. Even if placed in an apartment, it is advisable to find a very bright place, with direct sun. They are plants that suffer from the attack of some diseases, especially if not properly grown.
Excessive watering and poorly draining soil can promote the formation of root rot, which can quickly kill the entire plant. In very dry places with little ventilation between the rosettes of leaves, cochineals nest, which can ruin the foliage in a showy way, as do the mites that create obvious punctuation, reddish or yellow in color. Against cochineal and mites, it is better to use special insecticides and acaricides products.
- The perennial plant originates only from the African continent and belongs to the vast and widespread family grouping.
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