Alstroemeria is a plant that has been popular in gardens for centuries. It’s one of the most common varieties of flowers used in floral arrangements and bouquets. Alstroemeria makes an excellent cut flower and can be used as a complement to many other types of flowers. The plant itself is fairly easy to care for, making it a great choice for beginner gardeners.
Why buy an Alstroemeria?
Alstroemeria flowers are beautiful, they last for up to 6 weeks and they are incredibly colourful. Not only is it possible to obtain these flowers year-round, but it’s possible to purchase them all year long. Alstroemeria is known to bloom the longest among the summer cut flowers and lasts well past the holiday season. The flowers have a pleasant scent that can come off as “green” or “frosted”, it depends on the variety.
Alstroemeria can be purchased from many different places, so picking your plants out of a field of other Alstroemeria’s is not the best idea! One of the main differences between an Alstroemeria and other flowers is that Alstroemeria flowers are also known as “mirror” or “tiger” flowers. Alstroemeria flower buds grow upwards and fan out.
Where to plant Alstroemeria
If you want to grow Alstroemeria as a cutting garden plant, you’ll need an appropriate location in your garden. It will do best in a sunny location with well-draining soil. Alstroemeria needs full sun and good drainage. Once established, Alstroemeria should have no problems surviving in most types of weather conditions.
Alstroemeria grows very tall, so you will need a way to keep it from blocking out the sun in your garden. It’s best to plant it when the plant is still dormant, which is the best time to plant most perennials. Alstroemeria grows more slowly when planted in spring.
How to care for this plant?
When planting Alstroemeria indoors, the plants are best started as young specimens. Plant the seeds about three weeks prior to planting outdoors. Follow the directions below to plant them indoors:
- Pick a shady area and cover the seeds with water.
- Place the moist seeds on the soil to allow them to dry and then spray them with water. They should start to sprout by the end of the next day.
- Alstroemeria needs very little maintenance in the summer. They should receive no more water than they need to bloom. Keep the soil consistently moist and regularly keep it moist.
- After the plant has bloomed, cut the stems back about two to four inches from the ground.
Origin of Alstroemeria
Alstroemeria is a type of flowering plant called a philodendron. They are native to South America and have flowers that resemble a typical daisy. Alstroemeria was imported to Europe in the middle ages and eventually became quite popular in flowers. However, it wasn’t until the 20th century that they became more popular in home gardens.
These new arrivals in North America and Europe were the first species of many to take advantage of large, sheltered horticultural buildings that had been built during the period of speculation and building fever. These buildings provided shade, cool air and moist air and all of the necessary conditions for plant growth.
Tips for your Alstroemeria
The blooming season for Alstroemeria lasts about six weeks, and the plant should not be left in the garden without the protection of a cold frame or glasshouse for more than that amount of time. The soil should be kept damp at all times. Fertilize your Alstroemeria in the winter months and in the summer, whenever necessary.
Before pruning or dividing your Alstroemeria, prune the main stems back to about 1 inch to discourage the plant from becoming invasive. Fertilize the roots every two months in the winter and two times a month in the summer. You can start your Alstroemeria off by growing your Alstroemeria seedlings indoors or in a small pot in your kitchen window. Once the plants are a little bigger, you can move them to a larger container.