Stapelia - 10 types of bright stars on the windowsill
Stapelia is a representative of a large group of succulents. Its thick trunks without leaves are distinguished by a peculiar shape, and the plant is valued for large flowers in the shape of a starfish.
Description of the slipway
Perennial succulents grow in the form of tetrahedral shoots. At the very base, they branch several times, then they are directed vertically. The total height of the plant does not exceed half a meter.
Stapelia is sometimes called a cactus. for frequent cloves on each side of the branches, but they are not prickly. Foliage is completely absent.
The color of the slipway is mostly plain green, and there are varieties with a bluish or burgundy hue, especially noticeable in sunlight.
Flowers solitary or paired, large. They always have 5 petals arranged in the shape of a star. The color is plain or colorful depending on the variety, the core is contrasting or surrounded by a roller, on the surface there is hardly noticeable or pronounced pile.
Interesting! In contrast to its beauty, the flower smells very bad. The aroma is more like the smell of rot and in especially sensitive people can cause lightheadedness.
Types of slipway, photo and description
The Dutchman Johann Bode van Stapell is considered the discoverer of the slipway, in whose honor the genus was named in the 17th century.
All varieties of slipway (pictured below) differ in color and size of flowers.
Star-shaped (s. Asterias masson)
The size of the star-shaped slipway reaches only 20 cm. The denticles on the light green shoots are small in number, grow on thickened tubercles.
A flower of a rich burgundy hue, against its background are pale yellow stripes. Petals are covered with a thick pinkish pile.
Giant (s. Gigantea)
Perennial succulent with erect branches that reach 3 cm across. The denticles on the shoot faces are rounded at the ends. The name of the species corresponds to the size of the flower - the diameter may exceed 30 cm.
The opened petals are very pointed at the ends and slightly tucked around the edges. Their yellow primary color is diluted with wavy transverse stripes of a reddish hue. The pubescence is scarce in the form of a translucent pile along the edge of the petals.
Variegate (s. Variegata)
The stunted succulent reaches a height of only 10-15 cm. The shoots do not have clear edges, and the edges are formed by cylindrical tubercles with a sharp point at the apex.
Buds are formed at the base of the branches and bloom on long peduncles. Petals of a triangular shape, the core is framed by a thickened roller. The color is mottled due to brown small spots on a yellow background.
The highlight of this variety is a pile of about 2 cm long on star-shaped flowers. The yellow-green petals are practically invisible behind him, since their entire surface is covered with hairs with club-shaped thickenings of white color at the end.
Golden Magenta (s. Flavopurpurea)
The height of the succulent usually does not exceed 10 cm. Green shoots with rounded edges, on which are thickened denticles. Several flowers bloom at the top of the shoots.
Their petals seem narrow from the rounding of the edges back, and the color is contrasted due to the main yellow color and pink core.
Interesting! When this variety blooms, it exudes a rather tolerant smell resembling candle wax.
Volatile (s. Mutabilis)
On the long shoots of a variable slipway, upward denticles resemble thickened spines. Brown-yellow buds bloom at the base of the branches on long peduncles.
A roller forms around the core of the flower, and burgundy cilia are located only along the edge of the petals.
A hairy stapelia blooms a large single flower of a red-burgundy hue. Its petals are pointed and deviate in different directions, and the entire surface is covered with a long pubescence to the tone of the flower.
An interesting feature of this species is that a bright red star is formed as if from a core, and it is surrounded by fleecy spherical petals of gray-white color.
The diameter of the flower is small, not exceeding 4-5 cm.
Guernia shoots are short, but the teeth are elongated. Small flowers of about 5 cm of solid red color bloom at once in a few pieces.
Large-flowered, or grandiflora (s. Grandiflora masson)
The tetrahedral shoots grow up to 20 cm. The flowers are large, with the sharp tips of the petals bent back. The color is burgundy on top and greenish from the inside, and the surface is covered with ciliary pile.
In order for the slipway to bloom and show all its beauty, you need to properly care for it and maintain a suitable microclimate.
Air temperature and lighting
So that the succulent shoots do not stretch, he needs an abundance of scattered and bright light. Such lighting is observed on the eastern or western windows.
Despite the lack of leaves and African origin, the succulent does not like the direct rays of the sun and in the summer needs shading on the southern windowsill.
In a pinch, the plant can also be placed in the northern part of the apartment, but then lighting with lamps is mandatory.
Important! Rearrangement in different places is a big stress for the succulent, so it is better to choose a permanent location right away.
The optimum temperature for stapelia growth in summer is in the range of 21 ... 25 ° C. She will feel best in the fresh air of a balcony or garden. Sharp changes in daily temperatures and cold drafts should not be allowed.
In winter, the succulent goes into a dormant state when the temperature is reduced approximately up to 15 ° С. You can not overdo it with air cooling, since the thermometer already at 12 ° C will become critical and will lead to the death of the flower.
Stapelia loves moisture, but not in large quantities. Considered moderate weekly soil moisture during the growth period (March – November), and in winter it is worth reducing watering to 1 time per month.
It is not necessary to spray the slipway, because it grows actively in low humidity. An increased indicator of this parameter in the house is a contraindication to stapelia breeding, since succulent will cause more trouble and be affected by fungal diseases.
To remove dust, rinsing the entire plant in the shower is recommended., it is desirable that water flow past the ground. Any water procedures are stopped during the formation of buds and flowering.
Top dressing is carried out during growth in small portions at each watering. Use as fertilizer ready-made composition for succulents is recommendedtake half the indicated dose.
Advice! To avoid root burns, top dressing is diluted separately and applied a couple of hours after the main watering.
In winter, the stapelia stops its growth, therefore it does not need additional nutrition.
Stapelia is actively growing in width and quickly masters the entire area of the pot, so it often has to be transplanted. Best to do it at the end of winter before the beginning of vegetation.
Young succulents are recommended to change the pot every year, but a mature bush can be transplanted 2 times less often.
- First, soil is prepared from equal parts of sand and turf land, or a ready-made substrate for succulents is bought. Important neutralize it in the oven at 90 ° C for about half an hour before transplantingthat destroys pests.
Advice! Powder from charcoal added to the soil (5% by volume) also serves as protection against fungus.
- A new pot is covered with a quarter drainage, a layer of substrate is laid on top.
- The stapelia is gently shaken out of the flowerpot and set in the center of the new one.
- In the process of relocation, an adult cactus can be rejuvenated by removing the central (oldest) shoots that can no longer produce flowers and are too long.
- Free space is filled up with soil. If it is even a little wet, then it is better to water the flower 3 days after transplanting.
Stapelia propagates by cuttings or seeds after flowering.
Reproduction in this way is best done in late spring - early summer. Cuttings are cut from faded shoots at the base with a sharp and sterile knife (wipe with alcohol or hold over a fire).
Before rooting the stalk, it left for 2 days at room temperature and treated with a growth stimulator ("Kornevin"). Then it goes deep into the wet sand and is covered with a greenhouse.
Ripening of seeds in a flower is long - at least a year. After collection, they need to be sown in sand, moistened and covered with a film. Germination is expected for about a month in a warm place and in good light..
Young shoots are planted separately in small containers no larger than 6 cm in diameter, where they are grown for a year. After this, a strengthened slipway is grown as an adult plant.
Young sprouts during transplantation can be separated from the overgrown bush. To do this, they cut off with a knife and sprinkle the wound with coal powder. A new plant is planted immediately in the ground for succulents.
At first, young slipway should be watered less often and protected from the sun.
With improper maintenance, the shoots begin to change their color or structure.
- Softening and lethargy of branches is a manifestation of intractable root rot. This is a fungal infection of the soil due to constant stagnation of moisture and low temperature.
- From a lack of light, the branches stretch, deform, and lose color brightness.
- From sunburn, brown spots remain on the shoots.
- From rare watering, the stems are wrinkled.
Why stapelia does not bloom
With seemingly complete care, the question may arise, why is the stapelia not blooming? The reasons are hidden in the nuances of the plant:
- It is important to provide succulent enough light. It is not recommended to rearrange the pot; if necessary, change the location twice a year.
- The key to health and flowering stapelia - optimal watering. In winter, do not water the land in cool, and in the spring gradually increase the intensity of moisture. It is most convenient to navigate to dried out soil.
- For slipway required rest period at low soil temperature. Staying warm for the winter, the plant does not lay flower buds.
- Excess fertilizer as harmful as excessive watering. The main component in them should be potassium, before flowering, you can increase the dosage of phosphorus, but nitrogen should be avoided.
- The soil needs a light flower high in sand.
Subject to these rules, the long-awaited flowers will certainly appear during the year.
Pests and diseases of stapelia
The main diseases of stapelias are associated with excessive watering. This parameter needs to be adjusted first of all before treatment of the plant.
Interesting! In the natural environment, succulent is practically not sick and resistant to pests.
Most often settles on a slipway aphid or mealybug. The fight against them comes down to spraying with an insecticidal solution according to the instructions.
Stapelia is a rather peculiar succulent. The efforts to grow it may not be justified if the smell of flowers will cause disgust. In the case of tolerance to smell, the room will be decorated with an evergreen and beautifully flowering pet.