Pteris - the most unpretentious of ferns
Pteris managed to win the title of both the largest and the easiest to grow ferns of all types popular in indoor culture. It really is one of the most unpretentious varieties, but it also has its own moisture requirements. Because of them, the main advantage of the majestic pteris is the decorative greenery. Vayi of leaves with unusual contours of lobes and impressive sizes are a sight that simply cannot be found among indoor fossils. Juicy green or motley color, expressiveness of details, distinctive character and atmospheric effect on the interior turns pteris into a star among decorative and deciduous cultures. And the ability to adapt to different lighting conditions allows you to actively enter it into the atmosphere of the rooms.
Pteris - a roomy giant with a peaceful character
Indoor pteris at first glance do not seem to be ferns. But despite the not quite ordinary, atypical for other fellow greens, they belong to the most ancient plants on our planet. Pteris (Pteris) - plants surprisingly friendly, not only to flower growers, but also to other cultures. It is believed that this fern will be in harmony with absolutely any other indoor plant, decor and decor. We have this indoor fern most often called bracken.
In nature, pteris is represented by two and a half hundred species, each of which can stand out for its merits. But in room culture, they cannot boast of the same enviable diversity. As a houseplant, only a few species of pteris are grown, while only one species is widespread - Cretan pteris.
Cretan Pteris (Pteris cretica) produces vayi up to half a meter long. Spectacular sheets of cirrus-dissected type flaunt just six pairs of segments. Moreover, the lower leaf segments are also dissected into lanceolate lobes, and the upper ones, as a rule, are whole. The wyayam is unusual due to the wing of the leaf stem between the two upper pairs of lobes and a beautiful serrated edge. Thin, elongated lobes in varietal specimens are flaunted by a feathery structure.
Despite the fact that the ferns of this fern are amazingly dense and powerful, tolerate even extreme conditions, they are surprisingly fragile and break very easily.
Usually, several shoots of this plant grow in parallel, which provides the Cretan pteris with constant renewal and a very attractive appearance. This fern can boast of an unusual, compact compact short rhizome of a creeping type, while scales and hairs are clearly visible on the roots. The leaves of the Cretan pteris are wing-shaped in shape, which gave the name to the entire genus.
One of the advantages of Cretan pteris is considered to be a rich varietal palette, offering to choose varieties with a patterned, variegated, yellow-green or white-green color, unusually branching leaves or twisted peaks as an alternative to the classical greenery. At the same time, motley plants are a bit more capricious than ordinary ones. The best forms are variegated albolineata with a white stripe along the central vein and crispate with additional segments of leaves on irregularly shaped vayas.
Other popular types of pteris are:
- Long-leaved pteris (Pteris longifolia) - terrestrial rhizome fern, producing vayi up to half a meter long and 25 cm wide, once pinnate, with 30 pairs of segments and a rich grassy green color. The petiole of this fern is always shorter than the leaf blade, segments elongated-lanceolate, up to 12 cm in length.
- Pteris trembling (Pteris tremula) - the largest and most similar to other ferns, the representative of pteris. It can reach a height of 1 m, produces spectacular waii with heavily dissected lobes. The stems are very fragile and easily break off, but the plant grows so fast that it can double its size in a year
- Pteris tape (Pteris vittata) is distinguished by a beautiful bend of arched leaves reaching a length of 1 m, and long feathers-lobes, located not in pairs, but alternately.
- Pteris multicut (Pteris multifida) belongs to the spectacular ferns with an unusual dissection of wai. Twice-cirrus leaves grow to 40 cm in length and 20 cm in width and show off with linear segments, more like thin blades of grass. With the large sizes of the leaves themselves, leaf segments are limited to a width of only 2-3 mm, and the serrated edge gives them even more unusual.
- Pteris xiphoid (Pteris ensiformis) is considered to be the most beautiful plant of the genus, even though it is less common in Cretan pteris. Reaching only 30 cm in height, it flaunts with double-pinnate leaves up to 25 cm long with oval segments. This fern has varieties with silver or white stripes and patterns, for example, the magnificent variegated variety Victoria.
Pteris is very easy to grow and they are rightly considered the most unpretentious of indoor ferns. It is this plant that should be chosen by beginner gardeners and those who do not want to burden themselves with the scrupulous care of a large collection of indoor plants. Pteris perfectly adapts to normal room conditions and actually imposes strict requirements only on the parameter of air humidity. But growing pteris flowers only in flower cases would be a big mistake. These ferns easily tolerate fluctuations in illumination and even sharp jumps in temperature.
Pteris Care at Home
Pteris does not respond well to direct sunlight and strong shading, but adapts well to various conditions with diffuse lighting and partial shade. In this case, shading, as a rule, does not affect the attractiveness of this fern. Thanks to such good adaptability, pteris can be used in the interior, exhibiting not only on window sills. In the shade, pteris will not die, but become more friable and lose the characteristic features of the wai structure.
Optimal for this plant are the northern window sills, as well as places similar to them in lighting. Although pteris will feel good in eastern or western locations.
Comfortable temperature for pteris
Pteris is considered one of the most loving cool indoor ferns. This plant looks best if the air temperature in the room does not rise above 21-22 degrees. Pteris tolerates short-term heat very well, as well as sharp fluctuations in temperature indicators.
The minimum temperature for this fern is considered to be 10-13 degrees in winter, but at any time of the year it will not suffer, even if the temperature fluctuates sharply. But as average values for pteris, a temperature of about 18 degrees is most suitable (especially for variegated forms that do not tolerate a greater decrease in temperature). At the same time, fern prefers at least a small temperature change between daytime and nighttime indicators.
Pteris does not tolerate drafts too well, especially cold ones. The plant should not be taken out to fresh air, with the exception of balconies during the summer, but it is better to provide pteris with a stable content in the room.
Watering and humidity for pteris
Like all ferns, pteris is a very hygrophilous plant. He does not like waterlogging, but prefers that the substrate in the pot is always wet. In summer, plants need daily watering. The procedures are carried out, focusing on the degree of soil moisture and immediately draining the water from the pan.
Starting from mid-autumn, pteris should be gradually transferred to drier conditions, reducing watering so that the plant is watered about 2-3 times a week by winter.
Another strategy is suitable for this fern - saturating the substrate by immersing the pot in warm water. The pot is kept in water until air bubbles no longer appear, and then allow excess moisture to flow freely.
High air humidity is not a vital indicator, but the higher the humidity, the more beautiful the fern looks and the more intensively it develops. Contrary to myths, florariums and flower showcases are not necessary for him at all, even if pteris can be the star of collections in them. For pteris, any strategy to increase the standard room air humidity is suitable:
- fern can be put in an external container filled with wet peat or pebbles;
- pots can be installed on pallets with wet moss or expanded clay;
- daily spray the greens with a fine spray.
However, humidifiers and indoor fountains are perfect.
When watering and spraying, you should carefully select soft water several degrees warmer than room temperature. Watering pteris with warm water is especially important in winter and when kept cool. For pteris, ordinary water must be additionally filtered, making sure that it does not contain excess salts of calcium, chlorine and fluorine. Periodically for the plant, you can acidify the water with lemon juice or citric acid.
Feeding for pteris
The feeding schedule for pteris is no different from the fertilizing strategy for other ferns. He needs a not too nutritious substrate and usually fertilizers for pteris contribute half as much as for other plants.
The optimal frequency of procedures is 1 top dressing in 2 weeks. Fertilizer doses recommended by the manufacturer are halved. Pteris is fed exclusively during the warm period from May to September. For this plant, you can use either special fertilizers for ferns, or mixtures for decorative and deciduous crops.
Pteris tolerates pruning well. Damaged vayi can be cut as low as possible during transplantation or even at the stage of active growth. Even if the whole plant has dried up, you can radically cut the fern, cutting off all the shoots. Abundant watering or immersion of the pot for the whole day in water will lead to the appearance of young shoots and the full restoration of the fern.
Pteris transplant and substrate
For pteris, it is necessary to select a simple soil composition that is well suited for all garden ferns. An optimal mixture is considered to be an equal mixture of equal parts of sand, sheet, sod, humus and peat soil, but any nutritious loose soil mixture with a pH of 5.5-6.0 is also suitable. This plant can be grown in a simplified substrate - in a simple peat compost or in a soil mixture consisting of equal parts of fertile clay soil, peat and sand.
Since this fern develops very actively and produces several shoots at a time, it usually needs an annual transplant even at a significant age. For pteris, an early spring transplant is ideal. In this procedure, the main thing is to lay the drainage and not tighten the soil too much: due to the composition of the soil and the irrigation regime, compaction during planting can lead to a violation of breathability. For pteris, the capacity is increased by one size compared to the previous one.
The greatest difficulty in the procedure is handling the shoots and leaves of the plant, which break very easily. Pteris is preferably transplanted with an assistant. When transplanting, it is better to immediately clean the bushes, removing broken off, dried up or damaged shoots, cutting them down to the soil level.
Pteris loves additional light loosening of the topsoil, which will maintain the air permeability of the substrate. It is carried out regularly during spring and summer.
Pteris diseases and pests
Pteris is resistant to pests and diseases. Scabies, mealybugs or aphids very rarely appear on the plant, and even then in the vicinity of infected cultures. Pest control is better with insecticides.
Common growing problems:
- breakage of leaves with careless handling;
- stretching the plant in a dense shadow;
- decay of shoots during acidification of the soil;
- the appearance of brown spots, drying out of leaves in the cold or in direct sunlight.
Unconditional positive characteristics of pteris include ease of reproduction. This plant easily allows you to get new specimens from spores and the vegetative method. Pteris actively breed self-seeding. When grown in large pots and containers, they spill out spores, from which, with a large degree of humidity, small shoots regularly appear. But if you collect spores on your own or purchase them, you can sow the seeds in March and wait for seedlings to appear, maintaining a low air temperature of about 13-15 degrees and high humidity.
The easiest way to propagate this indoor fern is to divide the rhizome. This fern is not afraid of injuries, tolerates transplanting and is easily restored after separation. In adult plants, during transplantation, you can divide the rhizome into 2-3 large parts with a powerful bunch of roots and plant each as an independent plant. While maintaining at least medium air humidity and stable substrate humidity, the delenki quickly adapt and actively move to growth.