Ask a Question forum: Streptocarpus - houseplant

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Name: Flower Power
Canada (Zone 5a)
Feb 19, 2018 7:17 AM CST
Does anyone find these plants need their soil to be changed often?
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
Charter ATP Member Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Mid-Atlantic Composter Region: Maryland Birds
Cat Lover Dog Lover Region: United States of America
Feb 19, 2018 7:38 AM CST
I can't say that, but I did find them a bit of a struggle. I have had 3 or 4 of some size from swap friends. I have had them be very happy in my basement under the light shelf, had them there a few months to get some good leaves, and then moved to my bedroom where those leaves bloomed a long time.
The fact that I don't have them now tells us something about how they can be fussy. They were damaged or killed when I moved them outside with everything else.
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Feb 19, 2018 8:19 AM CST
Streptocarpus is fussy for me as well. They seem to need more water than I would have thought. And watering from the top does tend to compact the soil horribly. I just divided mine and waiting to see how many survive.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
Name: Will Creed
Professional indoor plant consultan
Feb 19, 2018 8:35 AM CST
I don't think that changing the soil of a potted plant is ever warranted because removing the soil does some much damage to the tiny root hairs that the plants often never recover. Repotting or moving a plant into a larger pot is certainly appropriate when a plant is so potbound that it needs a thorough watering every couple of days.

Streptocarpus' have fine and fragile root systems that rarely benefit from repotting. Repotting will usually disrupt and delay the flowering cycle. Make sure your Streptocarpus gets lots of very bright, mostly indirect sunlight and is very close to or on a windowsill. When in the right sized pot, a thorough watering about once per week or as soon as the surface of the soil feels dry is about right.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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