The magnificent medinilla is an ornamental plant with large pink cluster inflorescences, which give it an elegant and extremely decorative appearance: hence the name "magnificent".
This plant is very simple to grow, but it is not very common because its characteristics are not known. Originally from the Philippines, it arises spontaneously in tropical forests, preferring particularly shady locations.
It has pinkish flowers that hang in large "racemes" that resemble bunches of grapes, which is why it is also called rose grapes.
It has large bright green leaves with very noticeable veins, stems develop from the apex of the leaves on which pink flowers are born, composed of very evident light pink corollas. To cover the real flower there are bracts of a deep pink.
Originally from the tropical regions of Southeast Asia and the Philippines, the medinilla It is an epiphytic plant that develops in the cavities of tree trunks. In the original places, the medinilla It is characterized by rapid growth and erect growth habit. Despite its tropical origin, it can withstand short periods even at low temperatures.
There magnificent medinilla it belongs to the Melastomataceae family, which has more than 180 species of shrub and climbing plants. It has thick stems with a quadrangular section, which lignify with the passage of time.
The foliage is persistent and the leaves are ample (they reach even more than 20 cm in length), elliptical, opposite, coriaceous, rough to the touch, dark green in color, with more or less wavy edges and with evident veins that depart from the rib central. The flower stems (about 45 cm long) carry a fleshy flower with five petals and a raceme, which is very reminiscent of a bunch of grapes. The different parts of the inflorescence are all characterized by a color ranging from pale pink to coral red.
Flowering usually occurs in early spring and can last even the entire summer. Each inflorescence has a duration of at least two weeks.
There magnificent medinilla can reach 2 m in height in places of origin, while in the apartment, if placed in a sufficiently large vase, it has an average height of about 120 cm.
Being a tropical plant it requires many hours of light and mild temperatures, which do not undergo thermal changes. The ideal temperature is around 25 ° C and, in winter it should never fall below 15 ° C.
The magnificent medinilla loves a luminous position, but not direct exposure to the sun's rays. Do not place it in places with drafts, such as near a door or window, and move it away from radiators
It does not need large amounts of water, for a better monitoring of the plant it is advisable to check the moisture of the earth, water as soon as it starts to dry, with water without limestone at room temperature. The soil must always be kept humid during the hottest season, without causing water stagnation.
Even in winter it is good to check that the plant has a slightly damp soil.
In the hot season it is also good to proceed with water sprays on the leaves, but without wetting the flowers, which would be ruined.
The plant must be watered with rainwater or non-calcareous water at room temperature. The medinilla does not like limestone, which causes the leaves to turn yellow and fall. Allow the soil to dry at a superficial level between one watering and another, but never let the whole soil dry completely. During the vegetative recovery period, keep the soil moist by watering at room temperature.
The magnificent medinilla needs a high environmental humidity, but it cannot stand a soil full of water, therefore always empty the saucer to avoid root rot. Put the jar in a rather large saucer with balls of clay and water so that the evaporation of the water ensures the necessary humidity for the leaves. With clay balls, the plant will not risk root rot. Periodically spray rainwater on the leaves, but not on the flowers. The nebulization will prevent the plant from being attacked by mites. Equally useful is the immersion of the jar in a container full of water for a few minutes. In winter, water very little, especially if the plant is placed in a rather cool environment. Resume watering regularly when the first buds appear. At the end of flowering, reduce the water intake since the plant enters the phase of vegetative rest.
Medinilla in short
|Type of plant||Ornamental, from the apartment|
|Use||In the apartment, greenhouse or veranda|
|Height at maturity||200 cm in the places of origin, up to 120 cm if grown in a vase|
|Growth rate||Rapid, if cultivation conditions are appropriate|
|Diseases and pests||Scale insects. Root rot|
|Temperature||Ideal: between 200-250 C, and not less than 160 C|
The cultivation of the medinilla
|Exposure||In light or in partial shade|
|Ground||Fresh, draining, rich in humus|
|Cleaning / Pruning||Elimination of withered flowers and stems too thin and weak|
|Composting||In the period of vegetative growth|
The plant needs a temperate climate throughout the year, it must never fall below 16 °, the optimal temperature varies from 18 to 22 ° C. It is advisable to find a fairly ventilated location to ensure good growth of the magnificent Medinilla. In the winter months it is advisable to leave the plant at a temperature that does not exceed 18 ° C.
Medinilla is an extremely demanding plant with regard to temperature and humidity. The temperatures suitable for the magnificent medinilla are between 18 ° and 27 ° C in the spring-summer period, while during the winter rest, the temperatures must oscillate between 14 ° and 18 ° C. The plant nevertheless manages to withstand even lower temperatures provided that for periods very short.
The reproduction of the Medinilla magnifica occurs through cuttings in the spring period, to increase the chances of success the warm bed (basal heating system) is appropriate.
The propagation of the magnificent medinilla is carried out by cutting.
The playback operation has problems and success is not always guaranteed. The cuttings are made in the spring-summer period on stems that are not too old (2-3 years), about 15 cm long. Cut under a knot and remove the leaves below the knot and the ends to reduce water consumption. Dip the tip of the cutting into the rooting hormone. If the leaves are too large, reduce them by half or roll them up to reduce evaporation.
The cuttings are placed in a fresh soil with peat and a lot of sand, up to the leaves, they are covered with a cloth or placed in a small greenhouse to create a humid environment with a temperature that is as constant as possible (240-290 C) and placed in the shade or a shielded light source. As the new shoots appear, remove the plastic sheet. The roots should come up in about 2-3 weeks.
The calendar of the medinilla
|Flowering||Early spring-summer (if ideal conditions are met)|