Thursday, October 30, 2014

Majestic, Exotic And Elegant : Medinilla


             The medinilla is аn astonishing plant - sublime, magnificent and monumental are just a few of the superlatives we can use. A great detail in your home. Even when it's only green ( not blooming ) is beautiful. It origins are the Philippines islands, and especially Java Island - at about 500 sq.m sea altitude. So, wet and hot atmosphere are the best conditions which suits the plant. It comes from the Melastomataceae family and includes more than 400 species. The most popular variety around the world is Medinilla Magnifica. This is an evergreen plant, and in nature is an epiphyte, which means that it grows non-parasitically upon another plant (such as a tree), and derives its moisture and nutrients from the air, rain, and sometimes from debris accumulating around it instead of the structure it is fastened to. It reaches 100-150 cm length. The stem of the plant is a 4 cornered, and gets thicker and stronger like a tree by the years. The leaves are big, with diameter around 30 cm, long and oval shaped. The flowers are small, but gathered in one strange shaped pink "roof". The whole blooming process is so interesting , like a real adventure. How the flower changes it's shape, size, colors, it takes about two months, and it is an exciting time for every flower admirer. At the beginning it is a very compact, with a pale color hidden at the leaves of the plant. Gradually the truss, grows up, and the stem gets longer while it starts bending from it's weight. The tinge becomes brighter and saturated, while it fully opens and we can see the pink/lila floweret. The blooming period of the plant is from the spring till end of summer. In nature you can see on one plant more than 10 blooming stems, with length around 1 meter, and it is a really spectacular view.  

Taking care of Medinilla - It is a light lover. It needs to be touched by the rays of sun directly  before noon or late afternoon ( avoid the strongest lunch sun , especially during the summer ). It won't bloom if it is placed on a shady place. The temperature in the room should be not less than 15-16 degrees. If suddenly the temperature changes  it would be very easily to  die. But also is very important for you to know, that if it always stays in a room ( about 20-25 degrees)  the plant could no be able to fall in its sleeping process and might not bloom , so move it in a little cooler room ( еspecially if you wonder why it is not blooming ).  No matter what plant  you are watering, always imagine what it is like in it's nature environment. So , medinilla's root system is weak though it's sizes and weight.   Тhe superfluous water could not be pumped. The soil should be always wet, but not soaking wet,  In winter you can even dry it, it is better.  A "not enough water" sign is when the leaves screw and start falling. If the water is too much, laters gets darker and black spots appers and fall down again. The plants loves the humidity in the air , so it will be great if you sprinkle it once or twice per week.  When moving in a new pot, we should remember its epiphyte way of living. It needs a small pot and less soil, and a good drainage.  The young plants should be moved every year, the older could be moved in 2-3 years.  It is good to be fertilized from spring till august.  The last advice I could give you is, don't move or change the position of the plant after starting the blooming process.



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