Cyclamen in a lovely pot

If you’ve received a Cyclamen as a gift or found one in your local grocery store at this time of year I’ve got some tips for you on how to make it look wonderful

It’s a unique way to make your cyclamen look eye catching in your home. Put the cyclamen in a terracotta pot that’s covered with shoots of pink heather.

It’s very easy to do – just follow these instructions:

1 TRIM the long, flowering shoots from the pink bud heather – being careful to make them slightly longer than the height of the 4-5in terracotta pot.

2 SOAK the pot in water overnight, then use all purpose glue to attach the heather shoots to the outside walls of the pot making sure the entire pot is covered.

3 POT up the cyclamen into the decorated pot making sure the corm (the underground plant stem) is at the same depth as it was in the original pot.

Cyclamen don’t like warm rooms so be sure to keep it in a cool room, on a North facing window sill if possible.






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Time lapse of Cyclamen blooming

I love the music that accompanies this video.

This is a time lapse video of a cyclamen blooming.

The plant starts out with no blooms and by the end of the video you’ve watched 5 or 6 blossoms develop and bloom. It’s beautiful.

I love cyclamen but they are very hard to keep indoors.

I had one once and when it started to do poorly in the house, it was spring, I planted it outdoors. It came up the next year, but I don’t recall seeing any sign of it this past year.

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Caring for flowering plants

The holidays will be upon us soon and one of the gifts that is given most often to friends, and relatives as we travel back and forth from dinner party to house party is the flowering plant. Flowering plants mark festive occasions, convey best wishes, and brighten our holiday tables.

Some of these gifted holiday plants may become members of your household plant family, others that are more difficult to care for or to get to rebloom will be discarded shortly after the holidays end.

Most gift plants will benefit from strong natural lights in order to help them grow and build up extra energy for reblooming. If given warm sunny conditions the plant will require more water than if they were to be kept in cool offices or stores that are illuminated by artificial lighting. In most cases you will need to keep the plants soil moist but be very careful not to over water or under water as over watering will lead to fatal root rot, and under watering will cause wilt. Foil wrappings and plastic-lined baskets are popular pot covers, but allowing water to collect in them keeps soil saturated and causes root rot. Water your plants with tepid or room-temperature water to avoid shocking roots.

If you keep the plants in cool locations the blooms will stay fresh and colorful longer. They wither or drop when exposed to cold drafts and the extremes of heat common near fireplaces and radiators. Dry air can reduce bloom time, too. Increase humidity by grouping plants on a tray of moist pebbles.

Christmas cactus is a long-lived plant that can bloom heavily each year if given the proper treatment. Keep its soil moist from now through next September, then let it go quite dry. Cacti grown dry and cool in fall will set buds in time for the holidays. However, flower buds may drop if Christmas cactus goes too dry or if humidity is too low.

Huge trumpet-shaped Amaryllis flowers perch atop a massive stalk. As flowers fade, remove them but leave the stalk to wither on its own. Then grow your amaryllis as any other sun-loving houseplant, fertilizing regularly from spring until late summer.

Provide amaryllis with a two month rest in late autumn. Quit watering and allow the foliage to yellow, and dry up, then trim it away and put the dormant plant in a cool, dark place until November. At that time, you can start to force new growth by giving it sun and water.

Gardeners seeking maximum bulb growth often plant amaryllis directly in a sunny garden outdoors, after the threat of frost in spring. Otherwise, leave your plants in potbound condition, repotting only every two or three years. Both amaryllis and Christmas cactus are among the most reliable indoor bloomers.

Cyclamen is an attractive flowering foliage plant that comes from the store with mature blossoms as well as buds in all stages of development. Give it a cool location and all the sun possible. Making it bloom again next fall is a challenge best reserved for experienced gardeners. Most plant hobbyists choose to discard the plant after the blooming period is over.

Christmas peppers are pungent-fruited ornamentals that remain colorful for weeks if given strong light and cool temperatures. Raised from seed, peppers are inexpensive and easy to discard once they lose their red fruit.

A pepper relative, Jerusalem cherry, is covered with round red fruit, poisonous if eaten. Care for it as you would Christmas pepper, discarding the plant after fruit drops. Keep its soil moist.

If your poinsettia still looks good after the holidays, place it near a sunny window and keep the soil watered. New shoots will appear as the weather warms. Cut back the stems after bracts fade or drop off. If your poinsettia has gone downhill, prune it back to about four inches, set it near a sunny window and water often enough to keep it moist. It should sprout new stems when spring comes.

Bringing poinsettias back into bloom next year is possible if you water and fertilize through spring and summer, pinching new growth to encourage good form. Around October first, give your poinsettia total darkness from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. every day. Anything less than complete, absolute darkness during these hours will interfere with blooming. Continue fertilizing and watering, and your plant will show color by December. When bracts start turning red, you can stop the dark treatment.

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