The plant Episcia is a member of the family Gesneria. It is quite popular among florists and is widely cultivated by them. This genus includes about 40 species. In nature, they can be found in Central and South America. When growing such a flower inexperienced florists, they should not have any difficulties, because it differs in its undemanding care and unpretentiousness.
As a rule, episcesia is grown as a decorative-leaved plant, but its flowers as well as leaves are quite beautiful. The shrub has a thick underground creeping stem and it often grows above-ground whiskers. On the surface of the stems there is pubescence. The flowers, which grow in bunches or singly, may be white or blue in color and are tubular in shape with a five-lobed arch. The oval leaf blades may be arranged in a suproposed or solitary fashion.
They may be colored in various shades of color.
- Flowering. Generally, flowering begins in June and ends in September.
- Brightness. Needs bright sunlight, but it must necessarily be diffused.
- Temperature. Episcea grows best at a temperature of 20 to 24 degrees, but the room should not be colder than 18 degrees.
- Watering. Throughout the growing season, water the bush abundantly through a tray. During the winter, watering can be done after the soil in the pot has dried to a quarter of the height.
- Humidity of the air. It should be elevated, and it is forbidden to moisten the flower from a sprayer. It is recommended to pour some expanded clay and some water into the tray. A terrarium is also suitable for cultivation.
During the period of intensive growth, feed the flower regularly twice a month using mineral fertilizer or organic fertilizer in weak concentration, taking half the dosage of that recommended by the manufacturer on the package.
- Storming period. Not pronounced. The flower grows and develops normally all year long under the same conditions.
It is carried out when the bush is in bloom.
- Transplanting. Every year in spring time.
- Mixed soil. It must be neutral or weakly acidic.
To prepare it must combine peat and leaf soil, and sand in the proportion 1:2:1. A little sphagnum and charcoal are added to the ready substrate.
- Spreading. By cuttings and seeds.
Aphids, scabs, whiteflies, thrips and mealybugs.
- Diseases. If the plant is not properly cared for or not given optimal growing conditions then it will not bloom and its leaves can also lose their decorative quality.
Episceum. Flowering and care.
Home care for episcesa
Because episcesa needs bright but diffused light it is recommended to grow on an east or west facing windowsill. On a northern window sill it can also be successfully grown. If the free space is only on the south window, the flower will have to shade with cloth or paper, or you can put it deep into the room away from direct sunlight. In winter time the flower should definitely have enough light.
For the whole year, make sure that the room where the culture is located is not colder than 18 degrees.
It grows and develops best at 20 to 24 degrees. During the fall and winter, do not expose the flower to cold drafts.
When watering, avoid getting liquid on the surface of the leaf plates. It is most convenient to water the episceum through a tray. Water should be well drained and soft and should be at room temperature.
During the winter time watering should be moderate, it is carried out after 2 days after the drying of the top layer of substrate. In spring and autumn, water the bush abundantly and immediately after the surface of the soil mixture in the pot has dried out. It is necessary to water the plant correctly, because it can cause significant harm as stagnant liquid in the substrate, and overdrying of the ground ball.
This flower grows and develops well in small greenhouses or terrariums because it needs high air humidity. You should not moisten the leaves with a sprayer because they have pubescent hairs and will rot if water gets on them.
In this regard, to increase air humidity it is recommended to pour moistened clay pebbles in a tray, and then put a pot with an episynthesis on it. Make sure that the bottom of the pot does not come into contact with any liquid.
Fertilize regularly, or rather twice a month, during a period of intensive growth. Both organic and mineral fertilizers can be used at half the dosage recommended by the manufacturer on the package. For example, if it says ¼, then dilute the fertilizer to 1/8.
Grown indoors episcea grows very fast. If you want the bush to be lush and compact, you have to shorten it when it blooms. The daughter rosettes from the cut shoots are planted next to the mother bush in the same container.
Ampelent varieties differ very fast growth, they sprawl strongly and can root in neighboring flower pots. To avoid this, the container with the flower is suspended so that its stems cannot reach the neighboring pots.
Transplant the bush systematically once a year in the springtime. Choose low but wide pots for transplanting. Substrate should be used slightly acidic (pH 5,5-6,5) or neutral, it should be composed of river sand, leaf and peat soil (1:2:1). In the ready substrate is recommended to pour a little moss and charcoal. At the bottom of the planting container, there must necessarily be large holes, which are necessary for good drainage.
Episcea. Transplanting. [Hope and Peace]
Propagation of Episcea
Episcea can be propagated by generative (seed) method and by cuttings. This procedure is done in spring. The easiest way to propagate a flower is to root its side stems.
The end of the developed stem without lateral shoots is placed in a glass with water to a depth of no more than 40 mm. The daughter rosette can not be cut off, and put next to the flower another pot with moistened substrate and bury it in the place where it bends, and deepen it only a few centimeters. The stem cuttings will give roots in about 7 days. For rooting to be successful, the temperature of the substrate should be about 25 degrees, while avoiding its strong cooling (to 18 degrees and below). Transplanting by the method of transplanting young bushes is carried out regularly 1 time in 4 weeks, and each time take a new pot, which is 20 mm wider than the old one.
An adult bush is grown in a pot that reaches no more than 20-22 centimeters across.
Episcea. Propagation and care . Episcia.
Brown spots appeared on leaves.
The appearance of brown spots on the leaf plates is due to the fact that the episcias have been watered with cold water. It is necessary to use well-drained water at room temperature for watering.
Yellowing of the leaves. Leaves turn yellow when the soil is very nutrient-dense. This can also be caused by very high temperatures, very low levels of humidity or direct sunlight.
If the substratum in the pot is very old and has become sour or if the room is not aired often enough the plant can be infected by a fungal disease causing a grayish coating on the surface of the flowers and leaves.
Episcea not blooming.If the plant is not watered properly, it will not bloom. The soil mixture in the pot should not be allowed to dry out often. Also flowering will be absent if there is a lack of nutrients or too much nitrogen in the substrate, as well as due to poor lighting, too low humidity and if the room is too cold.
If episcesia is not properly cared for during the dormancy period, it also may not produce flowers.
The biggest threats to this crop are aphids, scabs, thrips, mealybugs and whiteflies.
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Episces varieties with photos and names
Native to this perennial is Mexico. Its stems are divided into 2 types: the former are long and slender, darkening with time, they easily root in whiskers nodes and have daughter rosettes, and the latter are short with closely spaced leaf plates. The small, ovate leaf plates reach 30 mm in length and 20 mm in width.
There is slight pubescence on the surface of the dark green leaves, and their central vein is scarlet. The white flowers are fringed at the edges, and they have purple-colored spots in the pharynx.
Episcia cuprea (Episcia cupreata)
In nature, the species can be found in the tropical regions of South America at about 2,000 meters above sea level. The shrub size of this plant is much larger than that of the previous species. Flowing stems easily give roots in the soil mixture.
The surface of the elliptical leaf plate has strong pubescence and is about 30 centimeters long and up to 8 centimeters wide. The coloring of the front surface of the leaves varies from copper to brownish-green with a white stripe at the central vein; the reverse surface is red with a green stripe. The coloration of single flowers is red. The corolla tube is about 25 mm long; its outer surface is red, while the inner one is yellow with red spots. Flowering is observed in July-September.
Episcia creeping (Episcia reptans)
In the wild, this species can be found in the same place as Episcia copper-red. It is represented by perennial herbaceous plants. The leaf plates are about 80 mm long and up to 50 mm wide. There is strong pubescence on the surface, and they have a heart-shaped shape at the base, their lower surface is red and the upper surface is brownish green (closer to olive). Single flowers grow from the leaf axils on red pedicels.
The outer surface of the corolla is red and the inner is pink. Flowering is observed in July-September. This species is most often cultivated as an ampel plant.
Episces. Advice to all : the best varieties of my collection !