Apartment plants

Eustoma grandiflorum


Eustoma grandiflorum


Eustoma grandiflorum, also called lisianthus russelianus, is a plant belonging to the family of Gentianaceae, which includes annual and perennial species. Eustoma is a perennial plant native to South America and the Caribbean islands. In the original places the eustoma can also grow spontaneously, while with us it is grown as an annual or biennial both as an apartment or garden plant and for the production of cut flowers. As an indoor plant it is used to make flower corners or have bouquet flowers.
It is a perennial herbaceous plant native to South America and the Caribbean islands. It has ample basal leaves, of bluish-green color, very decorative, throughout the summer it produces numerous stems that prune some buds, from which, in succession, large campanula-shaped flowers bloom, purple, pink, lilac, yellow or purple; the botanical species have purple or lilac flowers, the other colors are due to the breeders. These plants are grown as houseplants, but they are also very common as cut flowers, or they are placed in the garden, where they are grown as annuals. It is also known by the name Lisianthus.

History of Eustoma


In European countries, the import dates back to a fairly recent period, and its diffusion as an ornamental plant or the sale of cut flowers is even more recent. But quickly it has gained an important place and has become one of the favorite flowers both for the bouquets and as a plant to grow thanks to the variety of colors, the particular grace and the durability of the cut flower.

















The eustoma calendar

Sowing

January-February, March-July
Planting January-February, March-July
Flowering June September

Exposure



To have good growth and abundant flowering it is good to keep them eustoma grandiflorum in a very bright place, but not exposed to direct sunlight for too many hours a day, especially during summer days that can have very high temperatures; these plants fear the cold, so in winter they should be kept indoors, possibly close to a window, but away from direct heat sources, such as radiators.
The eustoma plant it can be kept indoors, in a bright room, in a greenhouse, on a veranda or outside (on a balcony or a terrace in large planters, or in the garden near other plants): it will make any space where it is placed more beautiful. However, it should be emphasized that it can withstand the summer heat, even high temperatures, but does not like the cold, therefore it is grown as an annual or biennial plant. Usually the plant has a short duration and dies after the last flowers have withered.
The eustoma plant loves light, but it must be protected from the winds and, in the hottest months, it is better to place it also away from the sun.




















































General characteristics


The eustoma plant produces a kind of beautiful and delicate wildflower like a poppy, whose buds and flowers generally resemble those of the rose, however the aspect changes considerably in virtue of the numerous existing cultivars and the many hybrid species, created above all by the Japanese. The first crossings were made in the first decades of the last century and the remarkable variety of colors and shapes is due precisely to the activity of the Japanese.
The beauty of the flower, the very particular colors of the delicate petals (from white, to blue, pink, salmon, violet, purple), the long and robust stems (they can reach 60 cm), and the duration as a cut flower (if provided to change the water in the vase with a certain frequency, the duration becomes greater), make the eustoma suitable for floral arrangements and bouquets. The flowers with a simple or double corolla, depending on the intersections, of a single color or with streaks of more different colors, are suitable to create splendid floral decorations.
Eustoma is also appreciated for the unique oval leaves with a bluish green color on which the beautiful flowers with bright colors are even more evident.

How to grow eustoma



Eustoma or lisianthus can be grown in pot or in the open ground, but it must be exposed to the sun, so it is necessary to choose a position that ensures sufficient light and mild temperatures. To have an abundant flowering, sun and night temperatures above 150 degrees are required.
The soil should be fertile, fresh, rich and well drained. If eustoma is planted in the open ground, place the plants at a distance of at least 30 cm from each other.
The plant grows rapidly, but does not reach elevated heights. On each flower stem in summer, 2 to 4 flowers or 6 flowers bloom. The plants on the market generally undergo treatments and remain rather low (20-40 cm), while those sown and then planted on their own become much higher (up to 60 cm). Therefore, if you prefer smaller varieties to be cultivated in pots, indoors, buy the plant instead of sowing it.

Watering



As for the correct supply of water, from March to October water regularly, but without exceeding and letting the soil dry slightly between one watering and another; in the cold months water sporadically, when the soil is dry. It is good to be careful that water stagnations do not form because they can be very harmful to the health of plants of this type.
When temperatures are quite high it may be a good idea to proceed with the nebulizations, often spraying the leaves with demineralized water. Be careful, even when watering, to avoid wetting the flowers as they may have stains and marks.
They can easily withstand short periods of drought.
In the growing season, eustoma needs regular watering since the soil must remain constantly humid, above all potted plants must be watered regularly throughout the summer since the soil must never dry too much. In winter, in case of biennial cultivation, the waterings must be very limited. If the plants appear slightly withered, pour water into the saucer. If you notice that the water supply is insufficient, soak the jar for a few minutes in a container full of water. To maintain an adequate degree of humidity, it is possible to mulch on the ground. But be careful not to overdo it because the eustoma fears rot caused by excess water.


Ground



For the planting of these specimens use a rich and well-drained soil, consisting of balanced soil, mixed with shredded sand and pine bark, to slightly maintain moisture but ensure a good degree of drainage, a fundamental factor to avoid problems with rot.
To obtain a luxuriant plant it is advisable to repot the eustoma grandiflorum every 2-3 years proceeding with the operation in the spring period.
Topsoil
The eustoma needs a fertile and fresh garden soil, with good drainage. The plant purchased can be kept in the pot if you intend to grow it as an annual plant and do not want to create flower arrangements. If instead eustoma is grown at home as a perennial plant, it is advisable to carry out repotting every 2-3 years.
Composting
During the period of growth (June-end of August), administer liquid fertilizer every two weeks.


Multiplication



Reproduction of these plants to obtain new specimens occurs by seed, in autumn or at the end of winter, keeping the seedbed in a temperate place until germination has taken place; the new plants can be transferred to pots in late spring. It is also possible to proceed by dividing the tufts, using fertile soil to plant the new seedlings obtained and keeping them in a sheltered place with a constant temperature until they are rooted.


From sowing to seedlings


The sowing is carried out between November and February if you want to have a flowering in the first year, because it takes at least 5 months for the plant to reach the development necessary for the flowering process.
THE Plant seeds are very small therefore, to distribute them more evenly, mix them with sand or coffee grounds.
Prepare a seedbed with soil suitable for sowing. Spread the seeds on the surface, covering them with just a little soil, but very little, since the seeds need light to germinate. If you want to avoid the risk of it rotting, sprinkle some charcoal powder on the seeds.
Place the seedbed in a place where the average temperature is 200-250 degrees, and does not fall below 150 degrees. The process of germination is quite difficult. Generally a sort of miniserra is needed, which you can make by covering the seedbed with a plastic sheet at least until you see the first sprouts appear. Do not moisten the soil too much as the seeds may rot.
When the eustoma seedlings have 3-4 leaflets, must be transplanted into jars that should be placed in a bright place with a temperature of 150 to 180 degrees. While the planting in full earth or in pot is carried out in spring. In the colder regions, it is advisable to wait for the end of the frosts before proceeding to transplant the seedlings. If you intend to plant them in the ground, start placing the pots with the seedlings out a few hours a day when the risk of frost is absent, so that they begin to get used to. In the planting phase pay close attention to the roots because they are extremely fragile and the plant reacts badly to any damage to the root system. For seedlings in the open ground, in some cases it is necessary to help the plant with a guardian.
If, on the other hand, you do not want to get flowers from the first year, wait for spring or early summer and you can sow eustoma directly outside to flower the following year.

Pests and diseases



Eustoma grandiflorum are often attacked by cochineal and mite. They can be effectively contrasted with the use of special insecticidal products, or, manually intervening to eliminate scale insects, with the use of a cloth with alcohol. In case of excessive humidity these plants can also develop fungal diseases which, if not treated properly, can also lead to the death of the plant.
The leaves of eustoma can be attacked by aphids: if you notice their presence, try to eliminate them with an insecticide.
The plant can be affected by the rot: too much water or soil with insufficient drainage can cause root rot or the gray rot at the base of the stem. The rots are caused by fungi which cause the withering of the leaves, the progressive weakening of the plant and death.

Eustoma temperature


Flowering requires temperatures above 150 degrees, and cultivation must still take place at temperatures between 150 and 250 degrees. The climate of the Mediterranean regions characterized by mild winters allows the cultivation of eustoma outdoors, in the open ground or on a balcony or terrace.


Pruning


Eustoma does not need to be pruned, but in very high varieties, cut the tips of the stems before flowering so that the plant becomes stronger and has more flowers. Periodically remove the damaged parts and the withered flowers.


Eustoma grandiflorum: Advice and curiosity



The seeds of eustoma grandiflorum can be recovered from withered flowers and then dried. If kept in proper conditions, they have a duration of about three years.
Curiositа
Eustoma grandiflorum or lisianthus is a plant native to some territories of the United States where it grew spontaneously. The first seeds arrived in Europe in the first half of the nineteenth century. The plant's first appearance with a German seller dates back to 1902. Subsequently the great hybridization activity carried out by the Japanese began, and in the eighties of the twentieth century the many varieties of colors and corollas with single or double petals cultivated for commercial purposes appeared in Holland. In the following decade, eustoma spread to Europe, but this plant is now very different from the original American specimen. In the nineties it began to be commercialized and appreciated above all for the creation of multicolored bouquets, but it is still not very widespread as an outdoor plant to embellish flowerbeds or borders, although it lends itself very much to the association with plants that do not fear humidity.
Eustoma is the most suitable flower to express our gratitude and our thanks, so offer it to express your gratitude.


Eustoma for short

Family

Gentianaceae
Gender Eustoma
Type of plant From flowers, from cut
Origin North America, northern area of ​​South America
Vegetation Annual, biennial
Foliage caduco
Habit erected
Use Greenhouse, veranda, vase or cut flower
Height at maturity From 30 to 60 cm
Growth rate rapid
Diseases and pests Aphids, gray rot
Temperature Between 15 ° and 25 ° degrees