Friday, March 14, 2008

Indoor Garden: Kalanchoes

I did not forget to water the Kalanchoe. I did that on purpose.Kalanchoe ~ In Minnesota we pronounce this Kuh-lang-ko. But then, we also say 'you betcha!' Elsewhere it's Kal-an-ko-ee.

Did you water the Kalanchoe? Or, no? (That's how you talk in Minnesotan.) When I lived there, I bought Kalanchoes every year. Buy 'em, kill 'em, buy some more!

Now I am older, a tad bit wiser, and infinitely more frugal with my plant purchases.

Plus, I live in a high plains desert and they love it here. They'd love the dry furnace air in your house, too. That is, if you have a sunny window.

Kalanchoes are succulents.
Transplant in cactus potting soil, place in a bright sunny window and deadhead religiously for long months of cute, little flowers.

To get them to re-bloom, torture them a bit.
Remove from sun, avoid watering for a couple of weeks.

That should piss them off royally ~ which is a good thing because abuse sometimes encourages plants to flower like crazy. (Reverse psychology. It never worked on my teenage daughter, but it works like a charm on flowering perennials.)

After you've abused them, be nice to them again, with water, sun and fertilizer. That gets em so happy they almost always begin flowering.

One of my sunny windows is rapidly becoming a bonafide Kalanchoe museum. These gals range from 1 year to 4 years. I've got red, yellow, orange, fuchsia, petal pink and when they hybridize a purple version, I'll buy that one, too!

If you want my opinion, pronunciation is the only difficult aspect of this favorite indoor bloomer.

Succulents retain a lot of water, so it's easier to withhold water, without drastic damage to the plant. That's why they do such a fine job of protecting your property from wildfires.

Visit Julie at A Succulent Life.

Bonus Photo!
Why is Buddy wearing a tie?
Because I work from home and we've got a client meeting later today. (Always good to make a professional appearance when clients are coming over!)


Anonymous said...

You should tell them that he likes to ride in cars, too. You have raised a really weird cat. - Anne

Julie said...

My Kalenchoe always bloom in December (outside)...never knew I could force them to bloom year-round, inside. I will have to try this!!!

Los Angeles Gardening said...

Great post, who knew neglect would make the Kalanchoe thrive so much. Keep up the great work!