Akalifa -perennial evergreen and ever-blooming dwarf shrub, with drooping branches. This rather rare plant comes from the tropical forests of India: for good growth it needs high humidity and temperature. Akalifa loves bright light, but not direct sunlight, they can spoil its beautifully colored leaves, which in many ways determine the decorative properties of this plant.
The leaves of Akalifa are large, oval-shaped, and because of the short, hard hairs covering the plate above and below, rough to the touch. Their coloring is also very original - olive with pink pattern. During the period of intensive growth - from the beginning of spring to the end of summer - Akalifa is a large, bushy ornamental and deciduous plant. Some varieties are of interest because of the flowers, combined into long, drooping inflorescences. Akalife’s reddish-red flowers resemble foxtails.
- For the cultivation of Akalifu need a spacious tank, because the plant forms a fairly large and branched root system.
- The soil should be acidic and nutritious. Option soil mixture: leaf, humus and sod land with peat. Good drainage is required.
- The temperature should not fall below 15 ° С. The optimum temperature for summer is 20-24 ° С, for winter - about 18 ° С.
- For normal growth, the plant requires a lot of light, if the illumination is insufficient, flowering stops, the stems are drawn out, and the leaves lose their attractive color.
- Regular abundant watering is needed, it is slightly reduced in the fall, but the ground should always remain wet.
- Every day Akalif needs to be sprayed with water at room temperature. It is useful to keep bags filled with wet peat, moss or sawdust in pots to maintain the humidity of the air.
- Top dressing in the summer every two weeks, for this purpose use mineral fertilizer for room floriculture.
- Every spring a transplant is necessary, however, if the plant is too large, it is enough just to remove the top layer of earth and replace it with fresh.
- In late autumn or winter, all wilted inflorescences are removed from the plant and the young shoots are cut off by half.
- Important! This plant is from the family of euphorbia, so when you take care of it, remember that it is poisonous!
As a rule, after 2-3 years Akalifa loses its original attractiveness, it is recommended to grow new young plant specimens annually.
Reproduction is carried out by the apical cuttings. Spring or summer is best for this, but can be done at any time of the year. Twigs are taken approximately 15 cm in length, always with a "heel", i.e. with a piece of bark at the base. They are rooted in water or in a wet sand-peat mixture. Air temperature not lower than 20 ° С is required, be sure to cover the landing with plietilen film or glass. After rooting, the cuttings are seated in a container with an earthen mixture of the following composition: leaf, humus and sod land, peat and sand, taken in equal proportions.
2 months after landing, the young begin to actively grow. During this period, for the formation of a more magnificent look, it is necessary to pinch.
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