Growing hippeastrum hydroponically
Charming and graceful hippeastrum - one of the most beloved winter-flowered indoor plants. These bright representatives of the bulbous family have long won the status of classical culture and are found in almost every home. The popularity of hippeastrum is largely due to the simplicity of their cultivation. It is enough to provide the plant with the right rest period - and luxurious fiery gramophone of flowers on an elegant peduncle will decorate window sills. Hippeastrum are so unpretentious that they can be grown without soil at all.
The non-soil method of growing hippeastrum has many advantages. It allows you to get rid of dirt, use decorative transparent containers for growing plants, simplify plant care and actively introduce lush hippeastrum into the interior, using it as living bouquets even in the decor of the dining table. Hygiene, aesthetics and lightness are the main "trump cards" of growing hippeastrum without a substrate. The mobility and beauty of flowering in these plants does not suffer from a change in content technology.
From a technical point of view, there is nothing complicated in the hydroponic method of growing these bulbs. Capacities suitable for hydroponics, both with and without automatic irrigation systems, can be bought at any specialized garden or flower shop. For bulbs, you can even purchase pots already filled with expanded clay, ready for planting. There you can easily find special fertilizers for hydroponics, which are used to prepare a nutrient solution that provides plants with everything necessary for normal development.
Expanded clay or decorative primers should play the role of the substrate in containers, which will provide drainage functions and help to keep the bulbs and roots of the plant. Large and fleshy bulbs of hippeastrum are placed on top of moist expanded clay or another substrate, deepened only so that the plant is stable and can withstand the weight of a high peduncle during flowering. Usually, the same depth is observed during planting as when planting in ordinary soil, deepening the bulbs three-quarters or two-thirds of the height. Such a landing allows you to protect sensitive growth points from getting wet and at the same time prevents the plant from tipping over or bending under the weight of above-ground shoots. Usually new bulbs that are at a dormant stage “translate” to hydroponics, but you can change the method of growing and already developing plants in the soil by thoroughly washing the roots in water and carefully distributing them in the substrate
The substrate in which the hippeastrum bulbs grow is initially moistened periodically from above with a nutrient solution prepared according to the instructions for the selected fertilizer for hydroponics. Such irrigation is continued until the bulb releases a powerful root network or the plant adapts after transplantation. As soon as the rhizome is formed or the hippeastrums again start to grow, they begin to fertilize using the standard method, pouring a solution for hydroponics into an external container or flask for autowatering and maintaining the recommended level by indicators. Throughout the active development of hippeastrum need a standard level of hydration. Thanks to the hydroponic method, the plant receives as much moisture as it needs, without excess.
After the magnificent flowers fade and the hippeastrum completes the flowering period, they will begin the stage of relatively dormancy, or preparation for flowering. Peduncles must be cut to the ground, and plants that store nutrients and grow bulbs for the next year, continue to be kept in bright light and warm, maintaining a standard level of nutrient solution. In the summer, hippeastrum flaunting with bundles of narrow dark leaves can be transferred to the garden.
Since August, a period of complete dormancy sets in, a crucial stage for the successful flowering in the development of these bulbs. Over the next 3-4 months, hippeastrumas do not feed, just maintaining light moisture by periodically moistening the top of the substrate with clean water or pouring a minimal amount of water on the bottom of the hydro vessel. Full drying of an earthen coma should not be allowed. As the leaves wilt, they are removed. After the expiration of the full “rest” period, nutrient solutions in the usual dosages are again used. The bulbs gradually wake up and by winter, the hippeastrum again produce luxurious peduncles.