This is one of the most beautiful deciduous ornamental plants from the aroid family. Homeland – tropical America. These plants are large: adult specimens of some species reach up to 1.5-2 m. They grow well in warm and bright rooms, greenhouses and winter gardens, relatively shade-tolerant.
Dieffenbachia leaves are remarkable – evergreen, huge (30-60 cm long), leathery, whole, elongated, sitting on strong petioles on a fleshy, durable stem. They are decorated with white or cream spots of various shapes and sizes, which stand out brightly against a dark green background. Particularly spectacular dieffenbachia with creamy leaves, bordered by a bright green stripe. In culture, it blooms extremely rarely (only in greenhouses). Nondescript cob-shaped inflorescences are usually plucked so as not to deplete the plant.
Of the 40 species of Dieffenbachia in culture, the most common spotted Dieffenbachia (Exotic and Camilla varieties) and Pleasant Dieffenbachia (Tropic Snow variety). A collection of Dieffenbachia species and varieties can be seen in the Botanical Garden of the University.
Dieffenbachia grows well in warm rooms with high humidity. However, as his own experience shows, he also puts up with the relatively dry atmosphere of a city apartment. In dry air, the plant should be sprayed more often and washed with leaves. Winter temperature minimum is -15-16. At temperatures below 100, the leaves turn yellow and die. This plant does not tolerate drafts!
In the summer, dieffenbachia is abundantly watered with settled water at room temperature, and preferably warm and soft. Once every 2 weeks, large and fast-growing specimens need to be fed, alternating complete mineral fertilizers (1.5 g / l) with organic ones (mullein). In winter, watering is moderate, but you can not overdry the earthen ball.
In adult plants, over time, the trunk becomes bare and Dieffenbachia becomes like a palm tree. When pulling the plants, pinch the top and use it for rooting in water or a moist light substrate (a mixture of peat and sand) at a temperature of 24-26. First you need to remove 1-2 bottom sheets. Numerous thick roots appear after 2-3 weeks. The remaining stump after a while gives one or more new shoots.
For propagation, you can use segments of stems 4-10 cm long with one or two dormant buds. The sections are powdered with coal powder, slightly dried, laid on the surface of the substrate and lightly pressed into it. Young plants obtained from stem segments develop rather slowly in the first 2-3 months. It can also be propagated by basal cuttings, which are separated during transplantation of adult plants. The earth mixture consists of turf, peat, humus soil and sand (1:2:1:0.5). In diffused light in wide, but shallow pots or in small tubs, the plant reaches a large size in 2-3 years and becomes surprisingly decorative. Decorate your rooms with dieffenbachia, it’s really a beautiful plant!
The plant will not cause you any harm while in the room. However, when transplanting plants and removing wilted leaves, one must be careful: Dieffenbachia juice is poisonous. It can irritate the skin and especially the mucous membranes. It is better to cut the cuttings with rubber gloves, or after working with Dieffenbachia, you should thoroughly wash your hands with warm water and soap.