Cryptanthus - Plant
The plants have low-spreading rosettes of six to 20 leaves. Most grow in shady moist areas, some grow in rocky terrain, a few grow in full sun. They are dependent on their root system for water supply, since they do not store in their centres. A very few are succulent and can store water in their leaves.
|Common name||Flower colours||Bloom time||Height||Difficulty|
|Earth Stars||Pinkish white flowers.||All year round.||-||Easy.|
Planting and care
Cryptanthus will root easily in potting medium. Make a small depression, insert the pup s small stem and press the mixture firmly around it. Pot no deeper than the base of the first leaf. Stake the plant if necessary to keep it from rocking back and forth. It is essential for the plant to be secure for an extra fast start and good growth. Bottom heat may speed root development in colder climates. Place the newly potted plant in a favorable location and water it as one would a mature plant.
|For maximum color in most Cryptanthus, bright diiffused light is necessary.||The growing medium should be a loose, porous mixture.||They must be kept damp for best growth. It should never be allowed to totally dry out.||60 to 85 degrees F||Use dilute solutions, even to a quarter of the recommended strength. Any even balanced fertilizer works well (14-14-14, 10-10-10, etc.) A time-released granular fertilizer combined into the potting mix for newly planted offsets show excellent results.|
- Too much light will cause bleached spots on the foliage or a leathery, stressed look to the plant. In extreme cases, sunburn spots or holes will occur. On the other extreme, weak foliage and greening of color suggests that the plant needs more light.
Special features: In order to maximize growth, Cryptanthus should be fertilized. Cryptanthus will thrive on any balanced fertilizer such as 10-10-10 or 14-14-14. It is important, however, to significantly dilute the solution down to a quarter of the strength recommended.
This highly diluted solution can be used every time you water. The Cryptanthus Society recommends using a time release granular fertilizer when first planting pups.
Ornamental use: Cryptanthus should always be growing as potted plants. They are excellent plants for terrariums. attractive foliage in pots, accent plants