Callisia graceful and other callisias, growing at home

Callisia graceful and other callisias, growing at home

Callisia graceful - a beautiful variegated ampelous plant for apartments and premises

According to the horoscope, the plants of the zodiac sign Gemini (May 21 - June 21) include asparagus (feathery, densely flowered, asparagus), ferns (heart-leaved, humpbacked blehnum, auricular mnogoryadnik), feathery palms (Canarian and Robelena dates, Veddell's cocaine) purpurea reticulum, crested chlorophytum and ivy, cyanotis chiwis and callisia graceful.

Callisia belong to the genus (Callisia) of the Commelinaceae family, consisting of 40 genera and about 600 species of mainly herbaceous plants. The name of the genus Callisia itself comes from the Greek words "kalos" - "beautiful" and "lis" - "lily".

It includes 12 species native to the tropical regions of South and Central America and the Antilles. They are perennial herbaceous plants with erect, erect or creeping stems. In callisia, flowers are typical for plants of the entire specified family: all 6 stamens in a flower are not the same: three stamens opposite the petals are longer than three others, the stamens are bare.

Among the types of callisia, three are most popular in room culture - Graceful (or elegant) (C. elegans), Fragrant (C. fragrans) and Tehuantepec (C. tehuanteresana). The first species are native to Mexico.

In places of natural growth in the open field, Callisia graceful is widely used as a ground cover plant. When grown indoors, its wonderful ampelous qualities are used. It represents a plant with creeping, elbow-rising stems. It has alternate, ovoid or oblong-ovate leaves (5-7 cm long, 2.5-3 cm wide) with tubular sheaths, with a pointed tip.

From above they are dark green, as if velvety, with narrow longitudinal silvery-white stripes along the veins, from below - purple or violet-green. From the side it seems that the whole plant is covered with short velvety. Callisia has graceful, modest white flowers in sessile paired curls on the tops of the shoots (free sepals and three petals).

Fragrant callis is somewhat larger than the previous species. According to scientists, it is even atypical for plants of the genus Callisia. It is characterized by two types of shoots: the first are erect, fleshy, 70-80 cm high with normally developed leaves, the second - they extend horizontally from the first with underdeveloped leaves, with long tubular sheaths that fit the shoot, with cilia along the edge.

She and the leaves on erect shoots are larger (20-30 cm long, 5-6 cm wide), oblong-lanceolate, fleshy, with sheaths bearing cilia along the edge. Particularly noteworthy are its fragrant flowers. Small (up to 1 cm in diameter) with whitish translucent sepals and white petals, they are located in dense bunches and are collected in paniculate inflorescences.

Their aroma resembles the smell of hyacinths. The garden form of fragrant callis, Melnickoff, is very popular, in which white or light yellow stripes of various widths are thrown on the leaves, as it were. In folk medicine, fragrant callis is also called "golden mustache" (somewhat less often - "home ginseng", "Far Eastern mustache", "venus hair", "live hair" or "corn"), actively using it as a biostimulant.

Callisia tehuantepec is very similar to the previous species, differing from it in the absence of silvery stripes on the leaves, as well as in the bright pink color of the flowers.

For the spring-summer period, a necessarily warm place is selected for her in the room, while it is watered abundantly, avoiding stagnation of water in the pan, and every two weeks they are fed with a weak solution of complex fertilizer.

Considering that callis is a resident of the humid tropics, it is advisable to spray it with water at room temperature or a little warmer as often as possible. It should also be borne in mind that a characteristic feature of callisia is its dislike of direct sunlight, although for normal growth during the active growing season, it needs 8-10 hours of daylight hours and high humidity (preferably at least 70-75%).

For favorable development, the shoots of callisia are supported. From the above, it is now clear that this plant requires serious attention from the grower. Experienced growers believe: if it is not possible to constantly monitor the humidity and temperature of the air when cultivating callisia, then it is better to grow an unpretentious Tradescantia, with which, by the way, it is in some relationship.

In addition, under conditions of room culture (due to low illumination and low humidity), callis passes a forced dormant period, which for a rather long time - from October to February - is watered much weaker and is not fed with fertilizers at all. In this case, the optimal temperature must be ensured 16 ... 18 ° C, but not lower than 14 ° C.

Professional florists recommend transplanting callisia in a year or two, always choosing shallow and wider pots. They explain this by the fact that the root system in plants is rather weak, although it can grow rapidly. With each subsequent transplant, a slightly wider container is required than the previous one, so as not to constrain the root system, which will grow further along the upper layers of the soil. A mixture of sod and leafy soil, sand (in a ratio of 1: 2: 1) is used as a substrate.

The main method of reproduction of callisia is considered to be the rooting of cuttings taken from the upper part of the shoots. These pieces can be placed in water that has settled from chlorine (the roots do not appear earlier than 8-10 days) or planted in the soil, arranging a micro greenhouse there for normal aeration (close it on top with a large plastic bag).

With these propagation options, it is advisable to periodically spray the cuttings. Sometimes they resort to reproduction through rooting of lateral shoots, without separating them from the mother plant, and somewhat less often - by dividing the bush or seeds. Some growers succeed in rooting in a light substrate (peat and sand in equal proportions). The optimum rooting temperature is 20-24 ° C.

Callisia grows very quickly, so experts advise to carry out light pruning every spring or periodically rejuvenate it by cuttings. Callisia tolerates such pruning painlessly enough, therefore, if necessary and with some imagination, it can be given any shape. To ensure the callisia on the surface of the pot is more pomp, especially if it grows in a large container, several cuttings are immediately planted there.

Of the pests on callisia, aphids, spider mites and thrips are possible. The description of measures to combat these pests is the same as on other indoor plants, I wrote about this more than once in previous articles about horoscopic plants.

Callisia diseases usually occur of a physiological nature; they appear, as a rule, due to non-compliance with the irrigation regime. So, with excessive watering, rotting of roots and stems is possible, which is immediately accompanied by the active development of saprophytic fungal microflora in the soil. Callisia will initially respond to low air humidity with a slight change in the color of the tips of the leaves - they acquire a brown color, but with such a prolonged mode, the death of individual shoots is possible.

If you are thinking about where to place the variegated enchantress callisia, then I will tell you: she will feel especially good and look great in the form of an ampelous plant in hanging pots located near the window on the wall or on the closet.

Alexander Lazarev, Candidate of Biological Sciences, Senior Researcher, All-Russian Research Institute of Plant Protection, Pushkin


There are three breeding methods:

  1. You need to take the cuttings and place them in water 3/4. After 10 days, the appearance of roots will be noticeable. After which the plant can be planted. To accelerate root growth, epin can be added to the container where the cutting stands - stimulating growth.
  2. Cuttings without roots are planted and sprayed with water. After that, you need to cover with plastic wrap and put it in a room with low light for 4 days. When we remove the film, it will be necessary to water it without sparing water. After a day, rearrange in a place with normal lighting and water for another 4 days. During this time, the cutting will take root in the ground and begin to develop normally.
  3. When a mature plant has enough lateral shoots and at the same time it grows in a sufficiently large pot, then it is worth using the third method of propagation. We attach the main stem of the plant to the support, and sprinkle the shoots with earth. After 5-7 days, the shoot is cut off from the main stem, then carefully dug up and transplanted for independent development.

Fragrant callisia will not only decorate the room, but also come in handy for medicinal use.

Family: Commeline

Brief information about indoor plant

  • Callisia creeping
  • Callisia fragrant
  • Callisia fragrant
  • Callisia creeping (Callisia repens)


Genus name comes from Greek words kalos - "beautiful" and lis - "lily".

Types and varieties of callisia

In Central America, tropical regions of South America and the Antilles, 12 species of this genus are distributed.

Callisia fragrant, or golden mustache (Callisia fragrans)

A large plant with two types of shoots: fleshy erect 70–80 cm high and horizontal shoots of the aerial stolon type extending from them. Leaves on erect shoots are large, fleshy, oblong-lanceolate, 20–30 cm long, 5–6 cm wide, with sheaths bearing cilia along the edge. The flowers are small, up to 1 cm in diameter, in paniculate inflorescences, have a pleasant hyacinth aroma. Sepals are whitish, petals are white. The culture knows the form 'Melnickoff ' in which the leaves have light yellow or white stripes of different widths.

Callisia elegans

It has creeping, elbow-rising stems. The leaves are alternate, with tubular sheaths, ovate, with a pointed tip, 5–7 cm long, 2.5–3 cm wide. Velvety above, dark green with narrow longitudinal silvery-white stripes along the veins, violet-green below. The whole plant is pubescent. Small white flowers are located in sessile paired curls at the tops of the shoots. There are three sepals and petals. In practice, it is often mistakenly called Setcreasea striata.

Callisia creeping (Callisia repens)

A groundcover used to decorate the soil in tubs with large trees.

Callisia care

Placed in well-lit places, windows with a temperature of at least +12 ° C throughout the year. The exception is Callisia fragrans - it does not tolerate direct sunlight, it is better to place it on the west and east windows, the shoots need to be supported or use a hanging container. Watering plentiful throughout the year, even in winter, spraying. The transplant is carried out at any time when lean shoots appear, leaves are shed. Use a soil mixture of leafy soil, peat, compost, turf and sand (1: 1: 1: 0.5: 1).

Reproduction of callisia

Ground cover species - by dividing curtains, ampelous - by rooting stem cuttings and daughter rosettes (you can simply put in water) throughout the year.

Healing properties

Callisia juice contains a large amount of vitamins and minerals, which, in combination with the bioactive substances of the plant itself, become more effective. In addition, the highly active hormone beta-sitosterol helps to actively fight atherosclerosis, metabolic disorders, endocrine system pathology, inflammation of the prostate gland, and many other diseases. According to research, callisia fragrant has medicinal properties similar to such well-known stimulants as ginseng and rhodiola, but there is not enough verified information on the use and dosage of preparations based on the "golden mustache", therefore, self-medication by them at home is not recommended.

Scented Callisia, or Golden Mustache

The botanical name for the popular golden mustache is fragrant callis. She belongs to the commeline family (Commelinaceae)... There are 12 species in the genus Callisia that grow in the tropics of Central and South America and Mexico. But in culture, only one species is best known - the fragrant callisia (Callisia fragrans). Fashion for it arose in the nineteenth century, immediately after the opening. Then Kalizia was almost completely forgotten, and now they began to breed not as an overseas curiosity, but as a medicinal plant (by the way, not only in our country, but also in the West).

© anillalotus

In nature, this creeping grass up to 2 m long "crawls" along the mountain slopes and clearings, rooting in the nodes. It is named with a golden whisker because of the presence of long shoots that extend from the axils of the leaves, like the "whiskers" of strawberries, and take root in the same way. The length of these "whiskers" is up to 1 meter, they are naked, reddish-brown with long internodes and small rosettes of leaves at the ends (it is usually believed that only shoots no shorter than 9 internodes are suitable for treatment). Large, up to 30 cm, almost linear alternate leaves, covering the stem, develop only after rooting. When a sheet breaks, thin threads of rubber stretch between its parts. The stem of this plant, although long, is not able to stand upright, so it needs support in the apartment. Flowers, which rarely form in rooms, appear from the axils of the leaves and are collected in paired, hanging brushes on small peduncles. Each flower has three white, pink or blue petals, despite the fact that the inflorescences themselves are inconspicuous, they attract attention with a strong pleasant smell, similar to the smell of hyacinth.

This plant has changed its name several times. The first description was made in 1840 as Spironema fragrans, then it was renamed Rectanthera fragrans. The modern name - callisia (translated from the Greek. Καλός - beautiful, Λις - lily - "beautiful lily") she received only in 1942, from the American R. E. Woodson. In 1978, in Kiev, the book "Houseplants and Ornamental Flowering Shrubs" was published, in which they made an unfortunate mistake, calling Kalizia dichorizandra. Dichorisandra thirsiflora - dichorisandra brush-colored, although a close relative of callisia, but a completely different plant, moreover, very rarely found on windows. Other types of dichorizandra are much more common, but none of them, as far as we know, has a medicinal effect. In all species of dichorizandra, elliptical leaves (most of them are variegated) are arranged but spirals and create a beautiful rosette, it does not form a mustache or rubber threads.

Dichorizandras are much more capricious, they need humid air, some species and forms in rooms survive only under a hood that provides sufficient humidity.

© Henryr10

Vladimir Nikolaevich Ogarkov made a great contribution to the spread of the golden mustache as a medicine, who had been using it in his practice for almost thirty years before the publication of the first article that appeared in the newspaper "Healthy Lifestyle" in 2000. This was followed by a whole series of articles by other authors. With their light hand, kalizia is now widely used in folk medicine.

Scientific studies of the composition and action of the golden mustache are being carried out in St. Petersburg and Novosibirsk, and the only thing that has been fully proven so far is not the poisonousness of the plant. It actually contains a number of biologically active substances. And above all, it has a wound healing effect for scratches, cuts, minor burns. To do this, smear the sore spot with fresh juice or apply a crushed sheet to it.

For all more complex cases, the plant is preliminarily subjected to a special treatment, enhancing its activity. To do this, the stem and "whiskers" of calizia are wrapped in plastic wrap immediately after cutting and placed in the lower part of the refrigerator for two weeks at a temperature of about 3-4 degrees above zero.

© jana_2x2

I must say that callisia is far from a panacea, and a rather significant part of its action is based on the patient's faith in healing, but on the other hand, mild stimulation of the immune system and endocrine glands, which gives a golden mustache, are really useful for a number of diseases, mainly inflammatory nature.

You can also use a tincture of shoots, it not only disinfects wounds, but also rubbing sore spots with osteochondrosis, rheumatism, sciatica. To prepare a tincture for external use, a branch of a golden mustache with a length of 12 internodes (several segments of the same total length are possible) are infused in 0.5 liters of vodka for 10 days in a dark place. This tincture is used for compresses, rubbing. However, treatment with calizia is not devoid of features and contraindications. It is impossible to start treatment with calizia without consulting an experienced herbalist, since the dosage and dosage regimen are different for each disease. One of the complications of exceeding the dose or taking too long a dose is damage to the vocal cords, a change in the timbre of the voice, and sometimes its loss, and recovery is very difficult. You cannot swallow whole leaves, even well-chewed ones - a large amount of rubber does not allow pieces of a leaf to separate from each other, forming a kind of net. Such a sheet, unsuccessfully located, can clog the exit from the stomach and cause its obstruction with serious consequences.

© Andre Benedito

Golden mustache is easy to grow in a room. It reproduces by layering, mustache pieces and ordinary cuttings. The most favorable time for breeding is March, April, but if necessary, you can reproduce all year round.

How to root the stalk correctly? Cut off the top of the shoot with 2 - 4 nodes (joints) from the mother plant of callisia, remove the lower leaves, shorten the upper ones by a third. Dry the cuttings for 2 - 3 hours, and then plant in pots with a richly moistened soil mixture. Moisten the cuttings and cover with a plastic rooting bag.

A rosette of leaves with a small piece of stem is cut off from a horizontal lateral shoot and placed in a vessel with water. A powerful root system develops within 10 to 15 days. Then a young plant of callisia is planted in a pot with an earthen mixture and watered abundantly.

Young plants of fragrant callis are transplanted annually, and adults once every two to three years. It is better to transplant in spring or autumn. The substrate for planting is prepared from a mixture of compost soil, leaf and sand, taken in equal amounts. The acidity index should be in the range of pH 5-5.5. Good drainage is required at the bottom of the container.

When breeding kalizia, it must be borne in mind that it loves light, but cannot stand direct sunlight, especially hot evening ones. In this case, the plant becomes discolored and curled, whiskers cease to form. Calizia transferred to the shade recovers quickly. Winter temperature should be in the range of 16-18 ° C, otherwise the plants stretch strongly, reducing the amount of active substances. In summer, the golden mustache can be taken outside in a shady place.

Diseases and pests - thrips and red spider mites. At the first signs of damage, the plant of fragrant callis should be sprayed with a systemic insecticide and covered for 1 - 2 days with a plastic bag. The best preventive measures are daily spraying and maintaining the necessary air humidity.

Callisia fragrant

• in rooms mainly on the west or east windows, on the south windows with shading
• as an ampelous plant in hanging baskets or wall pots
• as a ground cover plant in flowerpots with large-sized plants (dracaena, ficus and others)
• in winter gardens
• in greenhouses or in beds under a film
• for the preparation of medicinal infusions, only young shoots with dark purple leaves are used

annually or two years later, in wide and shallow pots, since the root system of callisia is weak, but it grows rapidly, therefore, with each subsequent transplant, you need to take a slightly wider container

turf soil: humus: sand (1: 3: 1)

• with a lack of light, the leaves lose their characteristic dark purple color, turn pale or turn green, stretch in height
• poorly tolerates permutation relative to the light source
• it is advisable to spray the plant several times a day
• weak root system suffers from dry soil
• the plant grows old relatively quickly, losing its decorative effect, the lower part of the stems is exposed, therefore, a short rejuvenating pruning is needed once every 2-3 years or an annual pinching of the shoots
• if the air humidity is 60% and below, spider mites may be affected

in room conditions, forced (from October to February) due to low illumination and humidity

• the main method - apical cuttings:
- in water, roots appear in about 7-10 days
- in the soil under the film under the conditions of a mini-plate
• rooting of lateral shoots without separating them from the mother plant
• less often by dividing a bush or seeds

• does not tolerate direct sunlight
• for normal growth and development it is required
8-10 hour daylight hours
• air humidity is desirable to maintain at the level of 70-75%
• the shoots of Callisia need support
• during the period of relative dormancy, it is necessary to water abundantly, otherwise leaf discharge is possible

Callisia fragrant has 2 types of leaves:
- large, 20-30 cm long, 5-6 cm wide,
dark purple
- underdeveloped long tubular leaves with cilia along the edge, fitting the stem

stems are also of 2 types:
- erect, fleshy, with a large rosette of leaves
- horizontal, with underdeveloped leaves, to capture new territory

• according to old studies carried out in the Baltics back in Soviet times (80s), this plant really has similarities with such well-known stimulants as ginseng, "golden root" (Rhodiola rosea), but on the other hand, there is not enough verified information on the conduct of clinical trials, the development of methods of application, the dosage of drugs based on the "golden mustache" in such a situation, the noise raised on the Internet and in the press around this plant strongly smacks of unfair advertising and quackery
• I would like to warn people against hasty and ill-considered attempts to self-medicate when using any stimulants, caution and prudence should be exercised, since their overdose can lead to depletion of the body's defenses and a sharp exacerbation of chronic diseases at the same time, available data suggest that callis, probably can be used to stimulate the body, but by no means is it a "panacea for all ills"

Properties of a golden mustache - harm and benefit

The healing properties of the golden mustache

In folk medicine, the golden mustache medicinal plant is considered one of the most effective means in the fight against infectious diseases. The composition of fragrant callisia includes steroids, flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol, ascorbic acid, the entire group of B vitamins, phytosterols, pectins, nicotinic acid, tannins, macro- and microelements calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, cobalt, potassium, nickel, rubidium, copper, vanadium, strontium, bromine and other biologically active substances.

Medicines of fragrant callis normalize metabolism, strengthen immunity and blood vessels, remove toxins and toxins from the body, relieve pain and heal wounds. Golden mustache has antitumor, anti-inflammatory, wound healing, tonic, diuretic, anti-allergenic, antioxidant and anti-edema effects. It slows down the aging process in the body.

Golden mustache is used in the treatment of arthritis, arthrosis, dysfunction of the pancreas, adrenal glands, spleen, genitourinary and endocrine systems, inflammation of the prostate gland, edema of the mucous membrane, mastopathy, periodontitis, periodontal disease, coronary artery disease, varicose veins, vascular spasms, impotence, hemorrhoids glaucoma, anemia, dysbiosis, tonsillitis, anemia, osteochondrosis, rheumatism, dystrophy, urticaria, mycoplasmosis, trichomoniasis, cystitis, liver failure and other diseases and painful conditions. Outwardly, the golden mustache is used to treat skin diseases, frostbite, lichen, ulcers, skin cancer, healing deep wounds and burns.

Medicinal preparations of the golden mustache are plant juice, tablets, oil emulsion, decoctions, syrup, ointment, balm and alcohol or vodka tincture of the golden mustache.

Tincture for the treatment of bronchial asthma, diseases of the upper respiratory tract and digestive organs: chop 10-15 internodes of a golden mustache, put in a half-liter bottle, pour alcohol or vodka and keep in a dark place for 2 weeks, then take one dessert spoon three times a day 45 minutes before meals, without drinking or eating anything.

Golden mustache - contraindications

Fragrant callus preparations are contraindicated for pregnant women, lactating women and children under six years of age, as well as for allergy sufferers, patients with prostate adenoma, bronchial asthma and individual intolerance to the substances that make up the plant. Even if you have no contraindications, when taking the drugs, you must strictly observe the dosage and the prescribed treatment method, otherwise headaches, an increase in the thyroid gland, swelling of the throat, damage to the vocal cords and other symptoms of poisoning may occur.


Places of growth in natural conditions are tropical rainforests. Callisia creeping prefers shaded areas. Due to its fast rooting, it forms a dense sod during growth. It is found on stones and rocks, forming garlands of unprecedented beauty. Places of distribution are Mexico, Antilles, South America. The plant is widely used for indoor cultivation.

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