Metrosideros

Metrosideros

Metrosideros (Metrosideros) is a genus of flowering plants. It is directly related to the myrtle family (Myrtaceae). There are 3 subgenus in this genus and more than 50 different species. In natural conditions, these plants can be found in New Zealand, the Philippines, Australia, Hawaii and Central America, as well as in other subtropical and tropical zones. For example, one species can be seen in South Africa.

More about subgenus:

  1. Mearnsia - unites 25 species of shrubs, trees and vines. Their flowers can be pink, orange (yellow), red or white.
  2. Metrosideros - unites 26 species of shrubs and trees. Their flowers are mostly red.
  3. Carpolepis - it contains 3 species of trees that are semi-epiphytes. Their flowers are yellow.

Only evergreens are found in this genus. Their opposite leaves are short-petiolate. Leathery, dense leaves are entire and have an elliptical or lanceolate shape. The flowers are collected in apical inflorescences that have the shape of a panicle or umbrella. Small perianths are almost invisible, and pedicels are greatly shortened. The flowers have a very unusual shape. So, their filaments are very long (sometimes longer than leaves) and are painted in saturated colors, and small anther balls are located at their tips. When a plant is in bloom, it may seem like it is covered in lush pom-poms.

Caring for metrosideros at home

This plant is not very demanding to care for, but at the same time, in order for it to grow and develop normally in indoor conditions, you should know and follow several rules.

Illumination

A very light-loving plant. Throughout the day, lighting should be very bright with direct sunlight (at least 6000–7800 lux). This plant is able to withstand partial shade, however, with such poor lighting, it should not be present for a very long time. Indoors, a south-facing window should be selected for it. In warm weather, it is recommended to move to the street or to the balcony, while choosing the sunniest place.

Temperature regime

In the warm season, a moderate temperature is needed from 20 to 24 degrees. Coolness is required in winter (from 8 to 12 degrees).

How to water

Water abundantly as the soil in the pot dries up. To do this, use well-settled, soft water, which should not contain lime and chlorine. Overflow for metrosideros is undesirable, because its roots can easily rot.

With the onset of winter, watering should be significantly reduced.

Humidity

Requires high humidity. It is recommended to regularly moisten the foliage with a sprayer. You can also use other ways to increase air humidity.

Earth mixture

Suitable soil should be slightly acidic or neutral, enriched with nutrients, it is easy to pass water and air. You can buy ready-made soil mixture for flowering plants. To prepare a suitable mixture with your own hands, you need to combine leaf and turf soil, coarse sand or perlite, as well as peat in a ratio of 1: 2: 1: 1.

Do not forget to make a good drainage layer using pebbles or expanded clay.

Top dressing

You need to fertilize the plant during the growing season 2 times a month. To do this, use a complex fertilizer for flowering plants. Fertilizers cannot be applied to the soil from mid-autumn to mid-spring.

Transfer

While the plant is young, it is transplanted once a year in the spring. As the metrosideros grows, it is subjected to this procedure less and less. The specimen, which has a rather impressive size, is not transplanted at all, however, it is recommended to renew the top layer of the substrate in the container where it grows once a year.

Pruning

After the flowering period is over, the tree needs formative pruning, which it easily tolerates. Young specimens are allowed to be pruned and pinched throughout the year, while the desired shape should be achieved over time.

Reproduction

For reproduction, both seeds and semi-lignified cuttings are used. But this activity is very difficult and may end in failure.

For cuttings, the apical shoots of the current growth are cut off. Each of them must have 3 internodes. For rooting, vermiculite is used, as well as a mini-greenhouse, which must have heating. Before planting, the cut of the cutting must be treated with phytohormones. Such a plant blooms after 3 or 4 years.

They rarely grow from seeds, because after a very short time they completely lose their germination. Store-bought seeds usually do not germinate.

Pests and diseases

A scale insect or a spider mite can settle. After detecting pests, the plant should be given a warm (about 45 degrees) shower. The accumulation of scale insects must be removed with a cotton swab moistened in an alcohol-containing liquid. Then it is processed using Fitoverm, Actellik or another chemical agent of similar action.

The most common disease is root rot. Overflow or waterlogging of the substrate can lead to such problems. And also in the case when there is not enough light, the plant is in the cold or the room has too low humidity, it can throw off all the leaves, buds and flowers.

Video review

Types of metrosideros with a photo

Metrosideros carminea

It belongs to the subgenus Mearnsia, and is a native of New Zealand. This vine is evergreen and reaches 15 meters in length. It has thin aerial roots. Young stems are covered with a thin red-brown bark, which becomes darker with age. Small glossy leaves are colored dark green. They are oval in shape and taper slightly towards the end. Carmine flowers (crimson).

Metrosideros collina

Belongs to the subgenus Metrosideros. Under natural conditions, this plant can be found on the islands of the Pacific Ocean from French Polynesia to Vanuatu. This is a rather tall (about 7 meters) shrub or a relatively small tree. Oval leaves are pointed at the ends. Their front side is painted in dark green and has a grayish tint, and the back side is like felt. The flowers are colored deep red.

In this form, there are 2 varieties that are most popular:

  • "Tahiti" is a dwarf tree that reaches a height of no more than 100 centimeters;
  • "Tahitian sunset" is a mutation of the previous variety, and its foliage has a variegated color.

Spreading metrosideros (Metrosideros diffusa)

Belongs to the subgenus Mearnsia. Homeland is New Zealand. This vine with long shoots (up to 6 meters). Small leaves are only 2 centimeters long. The leaves have an oval-elongated shape, more like ovoid. The glossy front side is painted in deep green, and the back side is matte. The flowers are light pink or white.

Felt metrosideros (Metrosideros excelsa)

Or, as it is also called, pohutukawa - refers to the Metrosideros subgenus. It is a tall (up to 25 meters in height) and strongly branched tree. On the branches and trunk of this plant, you can often see aerial, very long roots. Leathery leaves have an oval-elongated shape. In length they reach from 5 to 10 centimeters, and in width - from 2 to 5 centimeters. The seamy side of the leaves is covered with a layer of whitish hairs, which strongly resembles felt. The same layer of hairs is found on the buds. Flowers are dark red-orange. There are varieties with pink or yellow flowers.

Metrosideros brilliant (Metrosideros fulgens)

Belongs to the subgenus Mearnsia. This plant comes from New Zealand. This ligneous vine is branching and very powerful. In length, it can reach about 10 meters, and the trunk is 10 centimeters in diameter. Leathery, smooth green leaves are oval in shape. The flowers are dark red.

Metrosideros operculata

Belongs to the subgenus Mearnsia. Originally from New Caledonia. It is a relatively small shrub that can reach a height of 3 meters. The stems have a square-shaped cross-section, and silky hairs are located on their surface. The leaves are elliptically linear. They reach 4 centimeters in length and 1 centimeter in width. Often there are specimens with white flowers, but there are also red or pink ones.

Metrosideros sclerocarpa

Belongs to the subgenus Metrosideros. His homeland is Australia. This is a relatively compact tree, which can reach a height of 10 meters. Leathery, green leaves are elliptical or ovoid. In length, they can reach from 3 to 6.5 centimeters, and in width - about 3 centimeters. The flowers are colored deep red.

Umbrella metrosideros (Metrosideros umbellata)

Belongs to the subgenus Metrosideros. This small tree reaches a height of about 10 meters. Green-grayish leaves have a pointed-oval shape. In length, they can reach from 3 to 6 centimeters.

This species is the most undemanding of all to care for. It is very popular with gardeners and has a large number of varieties and hybrids.

Metrosideros polymorpha

Belongs to the subgenus Metrosideros. The homeland is the Hawaiian Islands. Most often, this plant is a highly branching and rather tall shrub, but it also occurs in the form of a tree. The leaves are dark green-grayish to green in color. Their shape is obovate. In length they reach from 1 to 8 centimeters, and in width - from 1 to 5.5 centimeters. Most often, specimens with red flowers are found, but their color is also pink, red-orange or salmon.


General description

Shoots of metrosideros woody over time. Moreover, their strength indicators are so high that the second name for some varieties of culture is "iron tree". Some species are grown as indoor, the height of which does not exceed 1.5 m. The plant has a shiny foliage that has a deep emerald color. The shade of the bottom is much lighter. The presence of a small cannon is sometimes noted. Variegated varieties look especially interesting. The length of the leaf varies from 5 to 10 cm. There are no notches along the edge. The end can be blunt or sharp.

There is no dormant period, so shedding foliage is a process not typical for metrosideros.

January is the time of the beginning of flowering. Unusual flowers form on young branches. They are collected in inflorescences and represent a fluffy bunch, which is completely assembled from very long stamens. The shade depends on the specific type: pink, scarlet, cream, white. The plant is shrouded in a pleasant aroma, which attracts insects and small tropical birds. The culture fades in March, sometimes in May.

In place of the inflorescences, boxes with small seeds appear. The fact that they are ripe will notify her with a dark brown color. An interesting feature of the plant is the rapid loss of seed germination.


Reproduction of metrosideros

It is recommended to plant metrosideros seeds only freshly harvested, as they very quickly lose their germination and are not suitable for storage.

Cutting propagation is more efficient than seed propagation. Semi-lignified cuttings should be left for rooting in vermiculite, creating greenhouse conditions for them with a high level of humidity and heating.


Reproduction and transplantation

Cissus is propagated at home by cuttings, less often by dividing the bush.

  1. Cuttings. In the spring, in the summer, the developed apical processes with two or three buds are cut off, rooted in the substrate, or wait for rooting in water.
  2. Division of the bush. The bush is divided in the spring, when transplanting. The rhizome with growth points is divided with a knife into parts, which are immediately planted in the soil. After two weeks, the delenka will give growth.
Attention! Birch transplant is carried out annually up to 4-5 years. Adult vines are transplanted less often, with a frequency of 3-4 years.

Cissus is transplanted at home as follows:

  • prepare a soil mixture from peat, turf soil and leafy soil, sand in a ratio of 1: 1: 1: 1/2
  • lay out drainage with a height of at least 1/5 of the height of the container
  • after wetting the soil, the birch is removed from the pot

  • transfer the vine to a new container along with an earthen lump
  • add soil mixture, compact
  • watered
  • install the support.

Advice! Sometimes cissus reacts to transplantation by drying out shoots, leaf fall. During adaptation, watering is reduced, plants are supported with Zircon, Bioglobin, etc.

Spectacular plants, cissus will decorate dimly lit windows, decorate walls and columns in pots and on "ladders". Plants are magnificent in tropical compositions, frequent guests in winter gardens - picturesque photos will confirm this. In the form of ampelous culture, in outdoor flowerpots - they are appropriate wherever the beauty and comfort that these pretty vines create are appreciated.


Watch the video: Pōhutukawa; Metrosideros Excelsa New Zealand Native Plant