Columnea, Flying Goldfish Plant
Columneas (columnea hybrids) are demanding. They require high humidity and a lot of warmth. The location should be bright, at the same time, away from direct sunlight and draft. The flowers bloom in winter during a 30 to 40-day, cooler period. The plants should therefore be kept at temperatures of 53.6°F to 59°F in December and January. Temperatures under 50°F are damaging. In this case, put the plants back at room temperature.
Small, dark green, fleshy leaves sit in pairs on the long, drooping shoots of Columnea hirta. The flowers appearing on the leaf axils are vermilion, orange-red or yellow in color. Columnea gloriosa has narrow, elongated leaves that are covered with fine reddish hairs. The flowers are about 2.75 inches long and colored red with a yellow throat. Columnea microphylla is one of the most popular species. The leaves are small, hairy and brownish green in color. The flowers are orange-yellow with yellow markings. Variegated varieties are also available.
In early spring, the long overhanging shoots of the columnaes are covered with innumerable tubular flowers.
In the main growing season, watering should be done in such a way that the root ball is kept moist, but not wet. Lime-free water is recommended. During the resting phase, water to keep the root ball in the container from drying out completely. Only when the buds are 0.19 inches in size will the plant get used to the room climate again and then water it normally.
Only when the buds are 0.19 inches in size will the plant get used to the room climate again and water it normally.
Fertilize weekly in low doses. Stop fertilizing during the resting phase.
If the plants are kept too moist, they are prone to gray mold. Leaf fall is caused by air that is too dry, temperature fluctuations, too much shade or too much sun.
The magnificent hanging basket plant comes from the rainforests of South America.
The plants can be propagated by cuttings all year round, but the best time is spring or summer. Cut off shoot tips with a length of 2.75 to 3.93 inches and remove the lower pairs of leaves. Make sure that the cuttings are pushed deep in the soil that at least one leaf node is covered. They are best rooted in a mixture of equal parts peat and sand. The soil temperature should be maintained at 77 °F. Columneas can also be propagated by sowing in spring.
If necessary, repot in spring after flowering. Cut back the plants beforehand and pot them in hanging containers. Columneas need good, water-permeable potting soil. Mix coarse sand in the prepared potting soil.