Description of Pellionia, requirements for placement, choice of soil for transplanting, possible difficulties in caring for a plant, pests, advice on reproduction, species. Pellionia (Pellionia) - ranked among the Nettle family (Urticaceae), which has 50 representatives. The native habitat is tropical East Asian territories, as well as island Polynesian areas. It bears its name in honor of one of the members of the round-the-world sea voyage at the beginning of the 19th century - Pellion. Unlike real nettle, Pellionia will not do any harm at tactile contact with the surface of its leaves. Indoors, no more than two species are generally grown.
It is a perennial herbaceous plant. The leaves always remain the same color regardless of the change of seasons. The shape of the leaf plates are oval and varying in size, they are painted in green shades or covered with mottling. There may be slight jaggedness or smoothness around the edge.
The flowers of Pellionia, as in this kind of plants, are very nondescript and fine-grained, but they are multiple and umbrella-shaped inflorescences are collected from them. Used as a groundcover or as a miniature climbing bush. Fleshy, easily breaking stems cover all the soil around them, forming a carpet of foliage. The plant does not have a dormant period and grows at the same rate all seasons.
Pellionia has an excellent property to purify the air in the room in which it is located; the entire atmosphere is also purified and has a detrimental effect on pathogenic microbes and harmful microorganisms. But she does not tolerate the carbon dioxide generated from the burning of the burners in the kitchen. He does not like to touch the leaves and shoots of cold glasses in winter.
Recommendations for the cultivation of Pellionia
- Lighting. Bright, soft lighting is essential for the successful growth of Pellionia. In this case, the pot with the plant must be installed on the window sills of the windows of the western and eastern directions, south-western or southeastern expositions are also suitable. But if the plant is on the windows, where the sun shines throughout the day, then it is necessary to arrange a shade, since the leaf plates begin to darken and deform. On windows, where the sun's rays do not fall at all, the drawing becomes expressionless and loses its decorative appeal. It is also recommended to install the pot a meter away from windows, somewhere on a coffee table or shelf, but the room should be bright. But if in winter the pot is on the windowsill of the northern window, then it is necessary that it be carefully insulated - cold air is very harmful to the plant. Pelléonia is also afraid of drafts or sudden changes in temperature. For normal growth, you can use special phytolamps if there is not enough lighting. From a long time of midday rays on the plant, its leaf plates will turn brown and the growth of pelleonia will stop.
- Pellionium content temperature. It is necessary that the indicators do not rise above 25 degrees during the spring-summer period, and with the arrival of autumn, the thermometer does not fall below 16 degrees. Although the plant loves warm indicators, it can hardly endure hot weather. It is important not to place the pot next to central heating radiators or heaters, as the leaf mass will begin to yellow and discard.
- Air humidity. Since Pellionia is a full-fledged inhabitant of humid and warm forests, it requires an increased moisture content in the air, almost 70%. Therefore, it is recommended to carry out daily (and in the heat it is necessary twice a day) spraying the plant with warm soft water (boiled or filtered). But overflow should not be allowed, since it is detrimental to the roots, and increased dryness will lead to drying and falling of the leaf plates. To increase the humidity around the plant, you can install vessels filled with water next to the pot, evaporating, it will increase the moisture readings. Alternatively, place the pot with pellionia in a deep stand under the flowerpot, on the bottom of which expanded clay or pebbles are laid, then the stand is filled with water, but care must be taken that the water does not reach the bottom of the pot.
- Watering. With the onset of spring, before the arrival of autumn, regular and abundant watering is necessary, at this time the growth of the plant increases significantly. As soon as the outside temperature starts to drop, soil moisture is reduced. It is necessary to ensure that the soil in the pot is constantly moist, but not waterlogged. Overflow will cause rotting of the root system of Pellionia. As soon as 2–3 cm of the top soil in the pot has dried, it is necessary to water it immediately. For irrigation, it is best to use "snow" or rainwater, but if it is not possible, then soften it by settling, filtering or boiling. You can also use the peat softening method - a handful of peat soil (with an acid reaction) is placed in a cloth or cloth bag and dipped in a container of water overnight. After that, the water will be suitable for irrigation. Water temperature during irrigation should be measured 20-23 degrees.
- Top dressing of Pellionia. This plant needs regular, but rare feeding. This may be a monthly operation. Fertilizers are used for ornamental indoor plants. Pellionia need not be fertilized in winter. The concentration of fertilizers must be reduced by half or a little more than indicated in the dosage by the manufacturer, otherwise the roots of the plant can be burned. It is impossible to allow the solution with fertilizers to get on the root system of Pellionia - first, watering is done with plain water, and only then top dressing is applied. Fertilization with solutions containing organic matter will contribute to the good growth of leaves and their beautiful color.
- Pellionia pruning. Since the plant has a tendency to lose its decorative effect over time by stretching the shoots, it is recommended to carry out planned pruning. Young plants can simply be pinched as soon as active growth has begun (with the arrival of spring), older plants are cut off, leaving the length of the branches within only 10 cm from the base.
- Soil selection and replanting. It is recommended that you change your Pellionia pot annually - this is best done during the spring months. The container must be chosen wider, this will contribute to the good growth of the bush. Vase pots or wide containers are used. Older plants can be replanted if necessary, if the root system has completely filled the container provided to it. Small expanded clay or pebbles are poured almost to half of the pot, holes must also be made in it for the outflow of excess moisture that has not been absorbed by the plant. Once the transplant is complete, the plant is placed in a warm and dark place to wake up.
The substrate for Pellionia must have a sufficiently acidic reaction, so a little peat soil must be added to any soil. If this is not adhered to, then neutral soil indicators will slow down the growth of Pellionia. Also, the plant prefers nutritious soils saturated with vitamins. You can use purchased land for indoor plants, but lighten it with perlite or finely detailed bricks. But you need to remember that it must be light and loose enough so that it can pass air and water well. The soil mixture can be composed independently based on the following components:
- compost soil (you can replace greenhouse soil or their mixture in equal parts), humus, fine sand, peat (proportions 2: 1: 1: 1, respectively);
- rotted sheet earth, humus earth, peat, coarse sand (proportions 2: 1: 1: 1, respectively);
- sod land, leaf land, peat, coarse sand (proportions 1: 1: 1: 1, respectively);
- greenhouse land, perlite, river sand, peat land (proportions 1: 1: 1: 1, respectively).
Reproduction of Pellionia at home
Reproduction can be carried out using air layers, apical cuttings, dividing an adult bush and rarely seeds.
During the transplantation of Pellionia, shoots that are too long can be rooted if they are buried in the ground by pressing them into the soil with a stiff wire. Next to the pot of an adult bush, smaller pots are installed, filled with a substrate that is suitable for adult specimens. The shoot is neatly pulled out, pinned in a pot and covered with soil. After a certain time, the branch will take root and it will be possible to separate it from the mother plant.
In the process of planned pruning, pieces of the stems can be used as planting material. The stalk of the top of the stem should be no more than 10 cm in length and with several nodes and leaves. The cuttings are immersed in a vessel of boiled water and covered with polyethylene to maintain high humidity. After about 2 weeks, the cuttings develop roots and they can be planted in several pieces in pots with a diameter of no more than 10 cm, using soil suitable for adult Pellionia. Rooting of cuttings can also be carried out in a peat-sand mixture immediately, bypassing water, but you still have to create conditions for a mini-greenhouse with a constant warm temperature and high humidity. In this case, cuttings are treated with a root growth stimulator before planting.
Reproduction using the method of dividing the bush occurs during the transplantation of Pellionia. When dividing the root, you must use a well-sharpened knife. Next, the root is examined, it is necessary that during division, each part has a growth point and a sufficient number of roots. Then, the root is carefully cut, and the cut is sprinkled with crushed charcoal (or activated) charcoal, this will prevent putrefactive processes from developing and the cut is disinfected. Each shrub is planted in wide, shallow pots with soil suitable for mature plants.
After the flowering process, it is possible to harvest the seed. The seeds must be put in some kind of growth stimulant (for example, Kornevin) - this will increase the likelihood of germination. Then shallow containers are prepared for planting. Next, the seeds are planted in the substrate using the covering method. After that, the soil must be sprayed and the container must be covered with a plastic bag or a piece of glass. It must be remembered that the sown pelionia are regularly ventilated, the soil is sprayed. As soon as 2-3 true leaves appear on the sprouts, you can transplant plants into pots.
Potential pests and difficulties in growing Pellionia
The plant is most often affected by aphids or whiteflies, but it happens also by spider mites and mealybugs.
Indicators of plant infection can be yellowing of the leaf plates and on their back side there is a light cobweb - a spider mite pest. When a mealybug is affected, the plant stops growing, and a cotton-like bloom appears between its nodes. Aphids and whiteflies are expressed in the coating of a sticky composition of leaf plates.
In any case, you can initially treat Pellionia with a soap or oil solution (100 grams of laundry soap is dissolved in a bucket of water, the solution is infused for 3-4 hours, and then filtered), you can also use an alcoholic tincture of calendula. These solutions can be used to treat the leaf plates of the plant. If these funds did not help, then you will have to use modern insecticides, which are sprayed on the entire plant, the pot and the place where Pellionia stood. It is important to ensure that the solution does not get on the roots of the plant.
For the prevention of these pests, warm shower procedures are periodically established for the plant.
Among the difficulties are the following:
- too bright lighting - the sheet plates will begin to deform, curl and darken, the edges curl up strongly;
- low humidity will lead to drying of the ends of the leaves;
- rotting of the stems occurs due to the lack of sufficient acidity of the soil, a decrease in temperature indicators and an increase in humidity at this time;
- shoots that began to lengthen too much, increase the distance between nodes, or even die off, indicate insufficient lighting.
Types of Pellionia for home breeding
- Pellionia daveauana. The native habitat of the territory of Southeast Asia. The stems of this plant begin to branch from the very base. They are completely naked with a brown tinge, quite juicy. The flowers are completely inconspicuous, from which inflorescences are collected in the shape of umbrellas, which are in the axils of the leaves. Flowers are distinguished by greenish shades and small shapes. Leaf plates can grow up to 6 cm in length, attached to short petioles in succession. They are distinguished by an obliquely elliptical shape (one of the vertices is rounded more than the other), with a heart-shaped base, obliquely attached to the petiole. Leaf color is greenish-brown, light green in the center, the surface is glossy and shiny. The reverse side is gray with a green tint, diluted with reddish tones.
- Beautiful Pellionia (Pellionia pulchra). The native territory of growth is rocky and mountainous South Vietnamese areas. It resembles Davo's Pellionia in appearance, but differs in a shorter length of leaf plates - 2–4 cm. The shape of the leaves is elliptical, has a silvery background along the top, and along the veins it is emerald-colored, slightly pubescent. The reverse side of the leaves has a pink-green tone and purple-red veins.
- Pellionia short-leaved (Pellionia brevifolia). The plant is a perennial with a creeping stem, has flowers of both sexes or can be monoecious. Stelae are slightly pubescent, rather branched. Leaves grow alternately with styloid stipules 1–2 mm, petioles can reach 2 cm. The leaf plate is elliptical or egg-shaped, with a top attached to the petiole. The leaves have large lateral veins that are asymmetrically located. Inflorescences are staminate up to 1.5 cm in diameter, located on a 4 mm peduncle, staminate flowers have 5 petals. Pistillate inflorescences are 4 cm in diameter, with a peduncle of 3 to 10 mm. There are 5 perianth petals. Seeds are elliptical, in the form of a narrow egg, covered with small tubercles.
- Creeping Pellionia (Pellionia repens). It grows mainly in Burma, Vietnam and Malaysia. The lifespan of this plant varies from 4 to 5 years. Stretches out to a height of more than half a meter. Very sensitive to drafts. The length of the leaves is 4–5 cm, rather fleshy, elliptical in shape with a bronze-green tint and a light green center. Flowering is observed only in natural nature. Possesses bisexual flowers. Stems can be slightly pubescent or bare, often branched, have a rounded shape. The leaves are arranged alternately, the stipules are triangular in shape, varying 4–10 mm in length and up to 5 mm in width. The petiole grows up to one and a half centimeters. The leaf plates are papery to the touch, have an ovoid shape and are attached to the petiole with a sharp edge.
You will learn about the maintenance and care of Davo's Pellionia from this video: