Gloriosa (Gloriosa) is a flowering plant that was previously attributed to the Liliaceae family, but the modern classification ranks it among the Bezvremennikovs, sometimes the Melantievs. In any case, all three families are classified according to the highest classification to the order Lilyaceae. Gloriosa has only 10 species and originates from the tropics of Africa and South Asia. Once in Australia, it is so acclimatized there that it crowds out local species and is considered a malicious weed.
Gloriosa is a winding perennial with elegant flowers of an unusual shape, bright green leaves and branched shoots that reach 2 meters in nature. The leaves are elongated, located opposite one at a time or gathered three in a whorl, at the tip have a kind of tendril or claw, with which gloriosa holds onto the support. If there is no support nearby, it grows like a creeping plant.
Single flowers have an actinomorphic (regular) shape and are located on elongated pedicels. Perianth gloriosa is brightly colored, has six elongated leaves bent upwards. Their outer side is usually painted pink, the inside is red, with a yellow base. Spectacular lush flowering continues throughout the summer.
Gloriosa has underground non-wintering tubers, very fragile, elongated or U-shaped. The roots do not develop at the tubers, but at the base of the stems.
Types of Gloriosa
- Gloriosa Luxurious - This is a climbing plant with shoots of 1.5-2 m. The leaves reach 15 cm, peduncles up to 20 cm in length. Large flowers of regular shape can reach a diameter of 20 cm, their petals are narrow, with sharp tips and wavy edges, painted in yellow and red colors.
- Gloriosa Rothschild is the emblem of Zambia. It blooms from June to August, reaching 10 cm in diameter with raspberry flowers. Petals of this species are very corrugated around the edge. There is a species with yellow perianth.
- Gloriosa Carson has a thin knotty stem. Flowers of her dark red hues.
- Gloriosa Yellow with flowers of pale yellow color.
- Gloriosa Simple - her flowers are small, barely reaching a diameter of 5 cm. A characteristic feature of this species are petals not bent up, but bell-shaped, painted in green, yellow, red and green.
- Gloriosa Modesta with small, up to 5 cm bell-shaped flowers of yellow-orange color.
- Gloriosa Yellow Green - Endemic of Angola. Dwarf species with stems no longer than 30 cm, leaves up to 6 cm and yellow-green flowers.
- Gloriosa Grena - the flower is like a Chinese lantern thanks to smooth lemon-yellow petals, curved upward.
The plant is not easy to care for, it requires increased attention to itself.
Temperature and lighting
Gloriosa needs a bright diffused light, it is covered from direct rays of the sun. If the plant has been in the shade for a long time, it is gradually accustomed to the sun.
During the growing season, gloriosa is kept at 20-25 degrees. Drafts can cause significant damage to the flower.
Humidity and watering
The plant needs both regular plentiful watering and high humidity. The earthen lump should not dry out in spring and summer. When the plant leaves the dormant period, before the shoots appear, the soil is moistened a little, gradually increasing the amount of watering, in autumn, on the contrary, watering is reduced.
When the gloriosa blooms, it must be sprayed carefully, as spots may appear on the flowers from moisture.
Fertilizer and fertilizing
During the growth period, every 2-3 weeks the plant is given fertilizers with a high content of phosphorus and potassium. In the resting period, feeding is stopped.
Soil and transplant
Gloriosa is transplanted annually into a wide low pot with a good layer of drainage. The soil needs nutritious, you can take a ready-made substrate for citrus fruits with the addition of humus. The transplant is done in late February - early March, clearing the tubers of the old soil and deepening the growth buds by no more than 3 cm.
Each tuber has only one kidney, if it breaks, the tuber can be thrown away. After the shoots appear, the plant is exposed. One tuber should account for approximately 5 l of substrate.
During transplantation, it is necessary to take care of the support for gloriosa. Liana clings to the support with antennae at the ends of the leaves, they are small, they can wrap only a thin wire, and besides, leaves may not be present at the base of the stems. The plant needs a garter.
Gloriosa has a dormant period. When the plant has bloomed and the leaves have begun to turn yellow, begin to reduce watering. When the stalk dries up, remove the plant remains and stop watering at all. You can leave the plant in the pot for wintering, simply by placing it in a dark, cool place, or you can remove the tubers from the soil (the old tuber will die, new ones will form), place them in sand or peat and keep in the lower compartment of the refrigerator.
In February, we transplant gloriosa into a fresh substrate and begin to gradually water it.
Gloriosa is propagated by tubers and seeds.
Gloriosa propagation by tubers
In February, daughter tubers are removed from the ground or sand and planted in pots with a diameter of 13-15 cm, sprinkled with soil at 2.5-3 cm. This must be done carefully, since the tubers are very fragile. Make sure the growth kidney is pointing up. It is best to use lower heating to a temperature of 20-25 degrees.
When the plant grows, and its roots fill the entire pot, transfer it to a larger bowl. You need to direct and tie the stems to the support as soon as they grow a little.
Propagation of Gloriosa by Seeds
In order for seeds to appear in gloriosa, it must be hand-pollinated with a cotton swab or brush. Immediately after collecting the seeds, they are sown in light soil and put in a greenhouse with illumination and lower heating.
It takes 4 months for the seeds to germinate, and they will bloom in the third year. When three pairs of leaves appear, young plants are planted in small pots with a diameter of 6.0-7.5 cm.
Pests, diseases and possible problems
Gloriosa can be affected by aphids, and with dry air, a spider mite. Treat the plant with an insecticide.
With excessive watering, the tuber can rot. If any disease occurs, the tuber is simply thrown away, so watch out for watering and drain the water from the pan after watering, arrange for good drainage.
The plant grows slowly and does not bloom - a lack of light, or damage to tubers due to improper storage.
The leaves turn yellow, and their tips dry out - lack of moisture, both in the soil and around the crown.
The leaves wilt with drafts and with sudden changes in temperature.
Remember that the tubers of the plant are poisonous. When transplanting and propagating plants, work with gloves and safety precautions.