NASA CLEAN AIR PLANT #47
Cyclamen species are native to Europe and the Mediterranean Basin east to Iran, with one species in Somalia. They grow from tubers and are valued for their flowers with upswept petals and variably patterned leaves.
Taking care of a cyclamen properly is essential if you wish to keep your cyclamen plant lasting year after year.
Cyclamen care starts with the correct temperature. In nature, cyclamens grow in cool, humid environments. If the
Cyclamentemperature of your house is over 68F during the day and 50F at night, your cyclamen will start to die slowly. Temperatures that are too high will cause the plant to begin to yellow, and the flowers will fade rapidly.
Cyclamen that are sold as houseplants are tropical and cannot tolerate temperatures below 40F.
The next essential part of taking care of a cyclamen is to make sure that it is properly watered. Cyclamen are grown from tubers making them sensitive to both over and under watering. Make sure the plant has excellent drainage with a potting medium that holds water well. Water your cyclamen plant only when the soil is dry to the touch, but do not leave the plant in this dry state so long that it shows visible signs of not being watered, such as droopy leaves and flowers. Also do not allow this plant to sit in water, it will drown.
When you water the plant, water from the bottom in a saucer. Water on the stems and leaves can cause them to rot. Be sure that when you water the plant, you thoroughly soak the soil and let any excess water drain away. Dump out any water that is in the saucer after 30 minutes.
The next part of cyclamen plant care is fertilizer. Only feed once every one to two months with water soluble fertilizer mixed at half strength. When cyclamen get too much fertilizer, it can affect their ability to rebloom.
After a cyclamen blooms, it will go into a dormant state. Going into a dormant state looks very much like the plant is dying, as the leaves will turn yellow and fall off. It is not dead, just sleeping. With proper cyclamen plant care, you can help it through its dormancy and it will rebloom in a few months.
When taking care of a cyclamen after blooming, allow the leaves to die and stop watering the plant once you see the signs that the leaves are dying. Place the plant in a cool, somewhat dark place. You can remove any dead foliage, if you would like. Let sit for two months.
Once a cyclamen has finished its dormant period, you can start to water it again and bring it out of storage. You may see some leaf growth, and this is okay. Make sure to completely soak the soil. You may want to set the pot in a tub of water for an hour or so, then make sure any excess water drains away.
Check the cyclamen tuber and make sure that the tuber has not outgrown the pot. If the tuber seems crowded, repot the cyclamen to a larger pot.
Once the leaves start to grow, you can resume normal cyclamen care and it should rebloom shortly.