Throat vine - so you maintain the Columnea properly

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The Columnea species bloom red, orange or yellow, with single flowers or in bunches. The throat vine is an ideal traffic light plant. Her shoots gently bend down and carry countless flowers in the spring. Some hybrids even bloom all summer long. The Columnea belong to the Gesneriengewächse family. In her homeland she grows as a epiphyte on trees, like orchids or bromeliads. From this one can already conclude on their special requirements in terms of location and care.
Location, climate
Since the throat vine usually sits on or on tree trunks in their home country, it is used to brightness, but is sensitive to direct sunlight. So a shady and bright location is needed. Draft does not tolerate them well. These conditions are not always easy to fulfill in the house. Added to this is their high level of humidity. This could even be worth the purchase of a humidifier. If you work with a spray bottle, you should not hold it directly on the blades and adjust the spray intensity very finely. Drops of water on the leaves are promptly struck with spots and finally with yellow leaves.
The average temperature during the growth phase does not fall below 20° C. In winter, then 15° C are ideal. Looking at all these site conditions, one realizes that a bright bathroom can be an optimal location. But if you strive for enough humidity, of course, other rooms are suitable. For the slightly cooler winter rest, it can be difficult, a conservatory or a bright corridor would be ideal. Tip: The throat vine can be cultivated in the house without winter rest. Then you may have to make some sacrifices in the flowering joy, but need not worry about a suitable winter place.
As is often the case with hobby plants, everyone will come up with their own experience with the perfect substrate for their Columnea. So swears the one on kaktus soil, the other holds normal potting, enriched with sand for sufficient. The following properties should definitely be possessed by the substrate:

  • permeable
  • mineral
  • pH slightly acidic to neutral
Tip: For a suitable self-produced substrate mixture: 2/3 potting soil, 1/3 sharp sand, expanded clay, perlite or similar.
to water
In addition to a constant high humidity, the Coleaeae must be regularly watered with room-warm water. She likes it evenly moist and does not like it when she has to get dry. However, she also responds to waterlogging sensitive. Therefore, it is important to use a permeable substrate. In winter you can then limit the watering.
This topic is uncomplicated, because the nutrient requirements are no different from those of other flowering houseplants. A universal fluid fertilizer for flowering plants will be added to the irrigation water every 14 days during the growing season.
To cut
After the flowering period, depending on the species, it can be very different, be cut particularly long or too long shoots by half. This measure promotes growth. In addition, the throat vine gets over time a full-bodied form with many flower-bearing shoots.
Repot, multiply
The throat vine likes to be repotted every spring or put into a fresh substrate every year. If the pot is already fully rooted, then you can take a next larger vessel. Another possibility is to cut off the root ball to about one-third below and re-insert with fresh substrate in the old vessel. Thistle vines that are kept without hibernation can be repotted all year round.
On this occasion, it is quite easy to grow cuttings from the shoots without flower buds. For this purpose, cut off the corresponding shoot tips, about 10-20 cm long, remove the lower leaves and put them in a pot of potting soil. By covering the pot with foil, it ensures a corresponding greenhouse climate. The location must be bright and between 22 and 24° C warm. In a vessel can be set up so up to eight cuttings.
Diseases, pests
If the pharyngeal vine suddenly receives yellow leaves, the leaves or flowers fall off, they are usually care or location errors:
  • too much sun
  • Water on their leaves due to frequent direct spraying
  • draft
  • Water is too cold
  • low humidity
As far as pests are concerned, it is most aphids, thrips and spider mites that attack the Columnea species. Since spraying or spraying of the plant is poorly tolerated and predators can not be used in the house, one should inquire about the need in the trade for a compatible crop protection product.
Up to 160 different species of the genus Columnea exist in their homeland.Some of them are also available here as a houseplant, added numerous hybrids. Here are some attractive types:
  • Columnea scandens: Many variations of this species are known. It has a long flowering period, from March to August. The flowers are arranged solitary, tubular and salmon red. After flowering she gets white berries. The Columnea scandens tolerates temperatures up to slightly below 0° C in the rest period.
  • Columnea X banksii: The Columnea X banksii is a hybrid, a type species of the genus Columnea scandens. The bright red flowers can bloom all year round. The leaves are slightly thicker and dark green. Like most types of Columnea scandens, it is also quite cold-tolerant in the winter season.
  • Columnea gloriosa: With up to a meter long shoots distinguishes the Columnea gloriosa. If it gets the right location, it will bloom all year round. Especially attractive are the leaves, which are covered with red hairs.
  • Columnea linearis: The Columnea linearis is one of the few species that grows upright. The shoots are branched and grow up to 50 cm high. The flowers grow individually on the stems in a dark pink tone. Flowering time is in summer.
  • Columnea microphylla: This species grows with long, drooping shoots, preferably as a traffic light plant. In spring, the shoots grow up to 2 meters long, covered with bright red flowers, out of the pot, surrounded by small, round leaves.
  • Columnea X kewensis: Also a hybrid is the Columnea X kewensis. The shoots do not grow directly downwards but lower with increasing length in a gentle arc down. The flowers turn red and up to 7 cm long.
Conclusion of the editorship
The Columnea species are a particularly attractive eye-catcher and not too common as a houseplant. Those who are not deterred by the demands of location and care, can enjoy the flowering, flowing cascades and be sure of the admiration of his guests. A good prerequisite already has, if you have bright rooms with high humidity, are optimally there, for example, bathrooms and kitchens. Another relief in nursing can be to opt for a consistent growth culture without hibernation.
Worth knowing about the throat vine shortly
  • Originally the column comes from the tropics, so she likes it a bit warmer.
  • Praller sunshine is not ideal, but better partial shade with continuous brightness.
  • As for the humidity, it likes the throat vine as moist as possible.
  • There may even be a special humidifier to help, so that the plant feels really well.
  • The temperature should never reach below 20° C during the year, but in winter it may be around 15° C.
  • The column has to be cast often and even if possible in a steady rhythm.
  • Columns should be planted in simple potting soil, but this must be very loose and transparent.
Tip: The throat vine or Columnea crassifolia simply hang in the bathroom, where the humidity is understandably always very high. Of course, this is only possible if there is enough brightness and the column can develop well.

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