Rohea - non-standard succulent, worthy of your attention
Exotic succulent rohea appeared on our shelves as an alternative to fed-up Kalanchoe. And it turned out to be more interesting than many succulents. Despite some similarities in flowering, it would be a big mistake to compare rohei with similar plants. Fancy shoots with overlapping cross leaves fascinate with its beauty. Bright bushes grow slowly, but the snake-shoots are becoming more beautiful over time, and the scarlet flowering is becoming more plentiful. It is enough to take care of its pruning and choose the optimal conditions.
The modest clan of the Roheus of the family Tolstyankovye always claimed the title of one of the most special. And although all species of rohea, used as an ornamental plant, are today transferred to the genus Tolstyanka, they are still easy to recognize and “separate” them. The rochae have the same fleshy leaves, but the density and nature of their location distinguish the rohea from any relative. And her flowering is the most dazzling.
Among the molehills, there are both shelters and shrubs, shoots are woody only in very old plants. Rohei grow slowly, adding a few centimeters per year and maintaining a stable decorative effect. Unlike many relatives, Rohei can maintain decorativeness from 5 to 10 years, and sometimes longer.
Opposite fleshy leaves grow together at the base, creating a bizarre symmetrical pattern of shoots, resembling tiles thanks to an unusual cross-shaped overlay of leaves. On average, the length of slightly pointed rohea leaves is up to 2.5 cm. They can be either oval-ovate or lanceolate.
Rohei are associated with dazzling bright and rich red shades, but some species have white and watercolor varieties. Tubular flowers are collected in sprawling, often loose umbrellas of inflorescences. Elongated buds with straight, lanceolate, fleshy bracts are transformed into elegant five-petalled flower stars with a narrow tube. Most roheas are fragrant.
Types of Indoor
In a room format, only 3 species of rohea are grown. Only one can be called popular - Rohea, or the Crassula magenta (Crassula coccinea, Rochea coccinea) This is a compact succulent with unbranched, densely leafy shoots, bright red inflorescences and small egg-shaped leaves.
Three other species are more rare, but true connoisseurs of exotic succulents consider them the pearls of the collections.
Rohea jasmine (Rochea jasminea, synonym - Crassula obtusa) - an elegant shrub with densely branching, drooping shoots, beautiful narrow leaves and loose inflorescences resembling jasmine in shape. The unique reddish edge and ciliated edge of the scapular leaves look charming.
Rohea fragrant (Rochea odoratissima, synonym - Crassula fascicularis) - a short, strict shrub with straight shoots, medium grooved-lanceolate leaves and very dense umbrellas of inflorescences.
Most varieties and forms are of hybrid origin, such as the famous multi-colored ‘Versicolor ’ (Rochea x versicoloralso included today in view Crassula fascicularis) with different shades of white and red colors on each flower.
There are several varieties with original shades - ‘Johannisfeuer ’ with a scarlet shade, ‘Grasers Rot ’ with scarlet ‘Bicolor ’ with white-red flowers and an old German variety ‘Flore Albo ’ with the purest white tone of flowers.
Growing conditions for room rohea
This is a photophilous and hardy plant, which, in addition to pruning, will need one important condition for flowering - a cool wintering. It cannot be replaced and compensated.
Lighting and placement
Despite its origin, the Rohea does not tolerate direct rays. Too intense illumination of the southern windows at noon is dangerous for flowering and leaves. But from the available options for diffused lighting, you should choose the brightest places. For the winter, it is better to increase lighting by slightly moving the containers closer to the glasses or by placing them on the brightest windows.
Roheyam is also suitable for additional illumination, which can completely or partially replace natural lighting.
Temperature and ventilation
Rohea surprises with his love of coolness. In a cool, ventilated place, she enjoys freshness, looks brighter and grows faster. This plant can withstand the heat, but it affects the appearance and flowering negatively. Temperature from 18 to 21 degrees in the summer and maintenance in the winter at indicators from 8 to 12 degrees - ideal.
If in summer the temperatures are higher, the plant is simply provided with access to fresh air and increased watering. It will not be possible to compensate for the absence of a cool wintering by leaving, because the rohei without lowering temperatures during the dormant period will not bloom.
Rohei love fresh air, regular airing, are resistant to drafts (except for cold, with strong temperature jumps). In summer, bushes can be placed in the open air with protection from direct sun and rain.
Care for Rohea at home
Watering and top dressing for a rochea is carried out so rarely that care for it cannot be called anything other than the simplest. Even pruning, which will have to be done annually, is one of the easiest among indoor plants.
Watering and humidity
At any time of the year, the Rohei do not welcome too abundant and frequent watering. Even in summer, the plant is sprinkled sparingly, allowing it to dry up to a third of the soil, but not completely dry it. Light humidity should be maintained in winter, reducing watering depending on air temperature to extremely scarce or minimal. Estimated frequency of irrigation - 1 time per week in the summer and 1 time per month in the winter.
For Rohea, you can use only warm, several degrees warmer than air in the room, soft water. Rain, melt, distilled, in extreme cases, boiled water is best suited.
Roheas grow well in dry air and, with good care, do not suffer from the proximity of air conditioners or radiators. Dust from the leaves should be removed regularly, carefully, with a soft brush.
Fertilizing and fertilizer composition
Rohea begin to feed with the start of growth in the spring, limiting to autumn 1 feeding per month. For this, plants use only special fertilizers for cacti and succulents.
Trimming and shaping a rohea
Rohei require quick removal of flowering peduncles that cut or break out at the base.
The main pruning is carried out annually, before the start of active growth and moving to heat, in February or the first week of March. All shoots of the rohea are shortened by ⅔ length, stimulating the active growth of new branches and allowing the bush to maintain a compact shape. Without pruning, the rohei deform more often and faster, with pruning - they retain decorativeness for up to 15 years.
Transplant, containers and substrate
Rohei are transplanted as they grow, not more than 1 time in 2 years (the root system develops as slowly as the shoots). They transplant in early spring, focusing on signs of the onset of growth.
For the rohea, high containers are often used to compensate for the hanging shoots, but it is better to choose the coasters and the shallow, wide bowls and pots corresponding to its compact surface roots with good drainage holes. A drainage layer of 4-6 cm is laid at the bottom of the tank.
Any soil for a rohea needs to be additionally loosened. An additional portion of coarse sand and at least one handful of loosening additives - perlite, stone chips, fine expanded clay, large coconut fiber, vermiculite, etc. are added to the standard substrate for cacti (purchased or compiled independently).
Diseases, pests and growing problems
Scabbard, aphids and mealybugs are frequent visitors to the molehills taken to the garden and suffering from the accumulation of dust. Fight insects with insecticide treatment. But much more often, the Rohei lose their decorative effect due to improper care. When the soil dries up, the leaves wrinkle, the stems wither, in low light they grow more slowly, and overflows quickly lead to the spread of rot.
The main method of propagation of roomflies of any kind is cuttings, although large bushes can simply be divided into 2-3 parts. The strongest shoots are selected from the plant either in February-April, or from the end of August to the end of September. In spring, you can cut the plant with stem cuttings, in summer - only the tops.
Rooted cuttings immediately in containers where they plan to grow young bushes, 2-5 shoots each, in a light sandy substrate (a mixture of 2 parts of sand and 1 part of universal soil for succulents is ideal). It is not necessary to cover the containers with a cap, but light humidity should be constant, and so it is much easier to achieve.
Rohei root at a temperature of 20 to 32 degrees (the higher the temperature, the faster rooting occurs). As you grow up, pinch the tops to thicken, improve rooting and the formation of bushes.