Nightshade (Solanum) room - home care
Kind nightshade or, as it is also called, solanum (Solanum) is directly related to the nightshade family. In this genus, there are approximately 1000 species, among which there are both herbaceous plants and shrubs, as well as trees. They grow in a temperate and warm climate around the globe. Under natural conditions, nightshade can most often be found in South America, the homeland of eggplant, tomato and potato.
At home, only a few species are grown, which include the false nightshade (Solanum pseudocapsicum). This plant comes from several places at once, namely: from Ecuador, Peru, as well as the island of Madeira. Under natural conditions, today it can be met in a large number of countries, and in Australia over several centuries it has become a weed, which is not so easy to get rid of, which is a confirmation of the unpretentiousness of this nightshade.
Such an evergreen plant is compact and is not a very tall shrub. In wild conditions, it can reach a height of 100 centimeters, at home - a little less. Its lanceolate dark green leaves have slightly wavy edges, as well as short petioles.
Its white small flowers are collected in not very large racemose inflorescences or they are single. Flowering can begin any month. However, the main decoration of this plant are its hearths. The fruit is a round-shaped berry, the diameter of which can be from 1 to 1.5 centimeters. They are painted in red or saturated orange. The fruits do not fall for a long time, so the bush is "decorated" almost the whole winter. In order to increase the residence time of the berries on the bush, nightshade should be placed in a cool room.
The most popular are dwarf forms of this home plant. In height, they reach no more than 30 centimeters, and their lush bushes are covered with a large number of berries. This plant is unpretentious in care and can be purchased in almost every special store. Often they are sold in the winter, because it is during this period that nightshade is one of the few plants that look very impressive.
Is home nightshade dangerous?
Any part of the nightshade is poisonous. In no case should you eat berries. They taste unpleasant, bitter, but small children can eat them out of curiosity. Despite the fact that they most likely will not eat a large number of these fruits, they will certainly have an digestive upset. And it also happened that the child swallowed the whole fetus or stuffed it into the respiratory tract.
Indoor nightshade is a dangerous plant, and it is not advised to grow it in the apartment where there are little children, it would be better to wait until they grow up.
Caring for nightshade at home
This plant is very fond of light and is best if it is scattered. In a shaded place, he has a very poor flowering, as well as his shoots are stretched, resulting in a loss of decorativeness. In the autumn-winter period, a window located in the southern part of the room is perfect for him. Since April, nightshade must be shaded from direct sunlight. In the warm season, it is recommended to transfer it to the veranda or balcony.
In summer, she feels great at ordinary room temperature. It does not tolerate too high a temperature. And also the temperature difference in the daytime and at night will be very useful to him (it should be cooler at night). In winter, it is recommended to lower the temperature to 12-15 degrees. If the room is cool, then the fruits will last longer on the twigs. In the summer, nightshade must be removed from the south window, as it will be very hot there.
How to water
During intensive growth and fruiting systematic abundant watering is required. In winter, watering should be moderate, while the colder the room, the less the plant is watered. However, the drying up of an earthen coma should not be allowed. Recommended spraying with lukewarm water.
In order for the plant to bloom profusely and bear fruit, it needs a large amount of nutrients. The plant is fed in the spring-summer period 1 time in 2 weeks. Use for this complex fertilizer for flowering plants. In winter, you can not fertilize the soil or feed it once every 4 weeks (use should be ½ part of the recommended dose).
Cropping tolerates well. And they make it after nightshade ceases to bear fruit, so that it does not lose its decorative effect. In the last winter weeks, you can often see yellowing and falling leaves. A procedure such as pruning greatly improves the condition of the plant. Be sure to shorten the main stem, as this will provoke the growth of lateral branches. And you should also pinch their ends.
It is recommended to transplant in the first spring weeks, before intensive growth begins. The soil must be used loose, easily passing air. Do not forget about a good drainage layer, which may consist of expanded clay. It is needed so that excess fluid can freely leave the pot. First, the plant is pruned by about 1/3, and then planted in new soil.
This plant does not live very long. So, it grows soon enough and loses its decorativeness. Therefore, some gardeners advise not to transplant nightshade, but to root the stalk taken from it.
A suitable soil mixture consists of peat, sod and humus land, as well as sand, taken in a ratio of 1: 1: 2: 1.
It may happen that there is flowering, but there are no ovaries of berries. In that case, if the plant is on the street during flowering, then a small wind is able to pollinate its flowers, transferring pollen. Indoor use may require pollination with a soft brush.
Pests and diseases
A spider mite can settle on a bush, but this is only if the room is too dry and warm. To get rid of it, it is recommended to carry out a systematic spraying of nightshade, and the affected areas should be treated with an acaricidal agent.
Often harmful insects settle on a bush while it is in the fresh air. So, in the summertime aphids can settle. For preventive purposes, nightshade must be treated with insecticides.
You can propagate by cuttings or seeds.
Seeds can be sown on their own, after the ripening of a ripe berry, but the flower pot should be quite wide. Young grown up plants can be transplanted into separate pots.
Sowing the collected seeds is carried out in the spring, and a wide capacity is used for this. They should not be buried in the ground, but simply scattered on the surface and sprinkled with sand a little. To germinate, put in heat (20-22 degrees) and cover with a film.
In the spring-summer period, nightshade can be propagated by cuttings. A mixture of sand and peat taken in equal parts is used for rooting. Cover the container with foil. On the handle should be from 2 to 4 leaves. In order to form a branchy bush, you need to cut the plant several times in the summer.
Author's program "Home Garden". Topic: Caring for nightshade.
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