The Strelitzia, also called the Paradise Birdflower, is one of the most exclusive flowering houseplants. The plant belongs to the plant family of Musaceae. The Strelitzia originates from South Africa and owes its nickname to the shape and colour of the plant. The most popular Strelitzia is the one with orange and blue flowers. The plant can grow up to 2 meters high in excellent conditions. Although the plant may originate from South Africa, the plant can now be found in many more areas worldwide.
Light is perhaps one of the most important things the Strelitzia should have. Therefore, always put the Strelitzia by a window so that it can get the full sun. The plant will get used to this and then she only likes it. The Strelitzia also does very well on terraces or in the garden. Please note that the plant can not withstand frost and therefore inside will have to overwinter.
The Strelitzia generally likes warmer temperatures and can certainly not withstand frost, therefore a minimum temperature of 15 degrees Celsius is recommended during the day and a minimum temperature of 8 degrees Celsius at night.
The Strelitzia grows very fast and therefore needs a lot of water, especially in summer. It is important to keep the soil moist, but make sure that the roots do not remain permanently under water. In the winter you can reduce the amount of water you give the plant because it will take its rest. You can even let the plant dry out for a while to make sure that fungi don't get a chance.
For the Strelitzia it is not necessarily necessary to water them. However, it is useful to occasionally still do to prevent vermin on mainly the leaves.
For the nutrition of the Strelitzia it is important to feed the plant every 2 weeks during the flowering period to promote growth. Universal fertilizer can be used for this. In winter never give the plant nutrients, this is unnecessary and can even be harmful.
It may be that the Strelitzia will form foothills next to the main stem. This may look a bit like mini plants that stand around the mother plant. You can choose to leave them, but then a larger pot is needed. You can also choose to repot them separately.
The lower leaves of the plant will become ugly at some point. These can easily be cut away by cutting away a few centimetres from the stem. The remaining few centimeters will wither and so the rest is easy to remove.
What is also useful to know is that the outer leaves will always turn browner at some point in time. This is natural and there is nothing you can do about it except cut the leaves off as described above. If brown spots appear on the leaves there is something to do, namely to water less. The brown spots indicate that the plant gets too much water.
Repotting is not necessary until the plant grows completely out of the pot. Make sure that the next pot is not much larger, as they like to be well rooted. Universal potting soil is recommended.
The Strelitzia belongs to the Musaceae plant family and originates from South Africa. In the 18th century the plant was shipped to many other countries. The plant is named after the wife of the English king George 3, who named Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.
The Strelitzia may suffer from scale insects. This is easily remedied, for example by simply wiping the aphid off the plant with a cloth. It may be that the plant suffers from spider mites, but this can easily be prevented by regular spraying. If the plant does suffer from it, it is advisable to buy a pesticide. You can choose between biological or chemical pesticides.
Flowering of the Strelitzia
The Strelitzia will start growing when the plant reaches the age of 8 years. It is important to look at how many flowers a Strelitzia has at purchase, as that can indicate how many flowers the plant will get the following year. Flowering is promoted when there are cool winters (around 10 degrees Celsius). For the Strelitzia Nicolai all this unfortunately does not apply. The Nicolai will only flower when the plant is about 2.5 meters tall. The flowers of the Reginea are blue and orange and of the Nicolai black and white.