Seven popular types of callistemon for home growing
The birthplace of this tall tree is Australia. Callistemon is common in nature in Tasmania and New Caledonia, where the growth of individual specimens of 14 meters is not the limit.
When grown in an apartment, callistemon has a more modest size, but even in an apartment, a tree can reach two meters in height, given the long life of this representative of the Mirtov family.
Depending on the variety, callistemon can be an evergreen tree or a well-branching shrub.
Valued for its unique flowering., which falls at the end of spring - the beginning of summer. The spike-shaped inflorescences are very fluffy and bright.
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Several varieties of callistemon are suitable for home breeding, and all of them are very popular among gardeners.
Callistemon Lemon (Callistemon citrinus)
This variety is actively developed by breeders, and many varieties are developed on its basis. In the wild (southeast Australia) shrub can grow above 4 metersbut at home usually reaches 1 meter.
It is appreciated for its beautiful abundant flowering, which falls on June - early July. It has large (up to 9 cm in length) elongated sheet plates with a characteristic sharp tip. On the leaves, the central and lateral veins are clearly expressed, and there are also glands that emit a light lemon aroma.
Popular varieties of this variety: callistemon levis, white anzac, rivez pink, mauv myst.
Callistemon rod-shaped (Callistemon viminalis)
A beautiful tall plant is widespread in Australia. In nature can reach eight meters high.
Its foliage has an elongated oval shape with a sharp tip, can reach 7 cm in length. Flowering begins in June. Inflorescences are bright scarlet with darker stamens.
Callistemon loosestrife (Callistemon salignus)
It has impressive dimensions (up to 12 meters in height), a developed crown. Releases corollas of all shades of white and cream. Outwardly, it very much resembles a willow in bloom.
Callistemon hard (Callistemon rigidus)
It is not very similar to other representatives of the species - it is a compact shrub with straight shoots oriented vertically upward. Its inflorescences are very fluffy, painted in raspberry color.
Callistemon bright red (Callistemon coccineus)
It can reach 4 meters in height. It features narrow, rather long leaf plates with a pronounced sharp tip. The inflorescences are rather large (about 5 cm in diameter and up to 10 cm in length), densely pubescent, bright red.
Callistemon pine (Callistemon pityoides)
It is a stunted (about 1.5 meters) shrub whose foliage resembles pine needles. Its inflorescences are relatively small (a little more than 5 cm in length and about 5 cm in diameter), dense and very fluffy, have a yellowish-green color.
Callistemon beautiful (Callistemon speciosus)
This is a small shrub that prefers cool places to live. It differs from other varieties by rather narrow sheet plates (in width they do not exceed 60 mm).
Its leaves do not have sharp tips, and in length can reach 10 cm. Refers to highly decorative species. Flowering occurs in June-August.
Useful properties of callistemon
Callistemon's benefits are not limited to the aesthetic pleasure of an incredibly beautiful appearance: he beneficial effect on the space around you. Judge for yourself:
- Phytoncides come in large quantities from the tree. Due to this, pathogens die in the room, the air becomes noticeably cleaner and fresher.
- Pleasant aroma reduces stress, calms the nervous system.
- Cosmetic decoctions and tinctures are prepared from branches and leaves. Due to the high content of essential oils, such products help fight skin irritations, acne and their consequences.
In order for callistemon to grow into a beautiful healthy tree, you need to make some efforts and provide the plant with proper conditions.
Location and Lighting
Callistemon is very photophilous, while he tolerates direct sunlight on foliage. Shade it should only be on very hot sunny days.
If the weather was cloudy for several days, callistemon is gradually accustomed to bright sunlight, gradually reducing shading.
The best place for a bush would be south, southeast or southwest windows. If the window is oriented north, the callistemon may not have enough light, and it needs to be additionally illuminated with a phytolamp.
Optimal summer mode - 22 ° C. After callistemon has faded, it is recommended to gradually lower the temperature to 16 ° C or slightly lower. Such conditions will help the tree easier to survive the meager winter lighting and dry air of the apartment.
Callistemon needs air humidity about 75%therefore it is regularly sprayed. The water is taken soft, best defended.
For winter time, spraying is stopped, because low temperature and high humidity can trigger the development of fungal infections.
During the period of active vegetation the plant needs abundant regular watering. They focus on the topsoil and add a new portion as it dries.
In autumn and winter, the amount of watering is reduced to 1 time per week, so as not to provoke the development of the fungus.
Flowerpot should be deep but not too wideso that the roots are a little cramped. In a too loose tank, the plant will begin to actively grow green mass. You will not wait for blossoms until callistemon fills the entire pot with roots.
The substrate for the tree is chosen loose, with high gas permeability. In principle, callistemon develops well in a universal substrate for flowering plants, but no one forbids making a soil mixture on its own.
To do this, in equal shares take:
- sheet earth;
- peat or sand;
- turf land.
To improve the drainage properties, brick crumb or vermiculite can be mixed into the substrate.
Fertilizer and fertilizer
For active growth and flowering of callistemon fertilize with universal complexes for flowering plants. They bring them along with watering, preferably in the evening. Once a month, highly diluted organic additives can be added.
Attention! In the fall, top dressing is stopped and does not resume until spring.
Young plants are replanted annually in the spring, because the tree is actively developing and growing. After three years of age, the pace of development is somewhat reduced, and such frequent transplants lose their relevance.
A tree is replanted every 2-3 years - About this time, the root system will completely fill the pot.
How to prune callistemon
Since callistemon is actively branching, pruning is of great importance in the formation of a healthy crown and stimulates flowering. Trimming a tree is best in the fall after flowering.
Remove all elongated thin branches, cutting them to a third of the total length. All damaged and dried branches are also removed.
Important! Be sure to treat the cut points and use a sterile tool. Failure to comply with these rules provokes the development of fungal infections and death of the tree.
Callistemon is suitable for the formation of bonsai, its young branches are flexible enough to guide them properly. Beginners will need a more complete description, bonsai care - not a rush lesson:
- young plant, better already reached the age of 3 years;
- screeds are construction;
- sharp garden secateurs;
- a pot corresponding in size to the root system, but not exceeding it.
A young but not yet woody plant is planted in a suitable pot. There should be little space so that callistemon does not begin to actively develop the crown.
The wire is fixed at the base of the trunk so as not to damage the bark (it can be wrapped with paper or a soft cloth) and sent up to the branches. Using screeds, the wire is attached to the branches or simply wound on them, giving the bonsai the desired shape.
To create beautifully curved branches, you can use small weights suspended on the ends of the branches. After 2, a maximum of 3 months, the wire is removed and the plant is allowed to rest for about 30 days. Then the procedure is repeated.
Attention! To prevent the tree from growing up, pinch the tips of the branches and crown, thus stopping growth.
In spring or early summer (the timing depends on varietal characteristics) peduncles appear on the tree and it begins to bloom. The sight is amazing and very beautiful.
Its spikelet-like inflorescences amaze with its size and color (from whitish-green to raspberry). After flowering round fruits are formed.
So that the tree will bloom next year, it is very important to provide him with a period of rest. After the last flower wilted in autumn, they begin to gradually lower the air temperature and reduce the amount of watering.
Feeding is stopped. If additional lighting was used, then, on the contrary, it does not stop: a lack of light can cause a delay in the production of peduncles or a complete absence of flowering for the next year.
For reproduction, standard methods are used: vegetative propagation by cuttings or seed cultivation.
Seeds are pre-soaked in a weak solution of potassium permanganate to reduce the risk of bacteria. Sowing is carried out in the middle - the end of February.
The prepared material is laid out on a nutrient substrate without deepening, and covered with a film. The optimum temperature for germination is 21 ... 23 ° C. Daily arrange airing, opening the film for 15-20 minutes. Humidify as needed from a spray bottle.
After emergence, the film can be completely removed. For individual pots seedlings are planted when they are 6-8 cm long.
This the method is used in autumn, because after trimming it is easy to procure suitable cuttings in sufficient quantities.
To improve root formation and stimulate growth, cuttings are treated with special stimulants and planted in a nutrient substrate. If leaf buds appear on the handle, then the rooting was successful.
Attention! A tree grown in this way will bloom 2-3 years earlier than sprouted from seeds.
Callistemon is increasingly found among other domestic plants. Its unfading foliage, spectacular flowering and pleasant aroma help the exotic plant to win new fans among domestic flower growers.