Crossandra

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Orange Marmalade

Propagation

Crossandra can be propagated in various tray sizes including 72,84, and 105’s. Propagate using one cutting per cell. Propagation Cycle: 5 weeks

Media

  • Choose a well-drained aerated propagation media
  • Avoid media containing peat moss which will hold too much water
  • Choose a blended media with other components or inorganic media such as Oasis® or Rockwool®

Bottom Heat

  • Bottom heat will promote healthy root development.
  • Maintain bottom heat at 70-75°F/21-24°C.
  • Mist will cool the media temperature. Monitor media temperature closely and frequently.

Rooting Hormones

  • Crossandra will benefit from the use of a rooting hormone.
  • Either liquid or powder formulations work equally well. Choose a product with up to 2500 ppm IBA or up to 500 ppm NAA.

Misting

  • Average days with mist vary from 4-6 days depending on environmental conditions in the greenhouse.
  • Mist cuttings so they remain turgid but avoid over misting that results in saturated media.
  • Over misting will result in slow rooting and possible problems with root rot and botrytis.

Temperatures

  • Crossandra are a true tropical plant and will appreciate warmer air temperatures in propagation. Until roots are established day temperatures should be maintained at 75°F/24°C and night temperatures at 68°F/18°C.

Fertilizer

  • Beginning in week 2, fertilize once weekly with 175 ppm nitrogen.

Growth Regulating

  • If necessary, Crossandra responds to Cycocel® sprays at 1000 ppm or B-Nine® sprays at 3000 ppm.

Pinching

  • Crossandra can be pinched in propagation at the grower’s discretion.
  • Any flowers forming on the cuttings should be continually removed in propagation.

Growing On

Media
Choose a media with the following traits:

  • Good aeration
  • Porosity between 5-15%
  • Sterile

Irrigation/Fertilization

  • Avoid excess irrigation and fertilization while plants are establishing which can lead to slow root development.
  • Fertilizer Regime
    • Choose a complete balanced fertilizer complete with minor elements.
    • Apply 200-250 ppm constant liquid feed.
    • A slow release product may also be used to supplement a constant liquid feed program and may provide improved performance for the consumer.
    • Allow plants to dry thoroughly without wilting between irrigations. Always water plants early in the day, allowing the foliage to dry before nightfall.
  • Maintain pH between 5.8-6.2
  • Optimum EC is 2.0 to 2.5 mmhos. Provide periodic clear water application if excess salts accumulate.

Temperature/Humidity
Crossandra thrive in high light, high temperature, and high humidity.

Temperature regime:

  • Night temperatures should be maintained at 65-75°F/18-24°C and day temperatures at an average of 75°F/24°C.
  • Crossandra do not handle cold temperatures well.
  • At temperatures below 45°F/7°C the foliage will turn black and drop.
  • Higher temperatures will also speed flowering.
  • At 75°F/24°C flowering will start 9 days earlier than plants grown at 70°F/21°C.

* * In cooler northern climates, Crossandra is best grown in late summer and autumn to take advantage of the high light intensity, warmer temperatures, and high relative humidity.

Relative Humidity:

  • During the vegetative stage high relative humidity should be maintained.
  • In flowering stages relative humidity should be reduced to control botrytis.

Light
Crossandra is not photoperiodic but flowering will be enhanced with higher light intensity.

  • Flowers will only develop when the light intensity is 2,000 ft candles/21,520 lux or higher.
  • The plant will remain vegetative when the light intensity is below 1,800 ft candles/19,368 lux so in low light regions supplemental lighting is required.

Spacing
Establish plants pot tight than space to:

  • 4” pots – 5-6” centers (approximately 2 per sq. ft.)
  • 6” pots/1 gallon – 14” centers
  • 8” pots – 18” centers

Pinching
1st Pinch- may be in propagation, if so no additional pinch is necessary

*Pinching will enhance branching. Growers can also experiment with the use of Florel to promote branching.

Plant Growth Regulators
Growth Regulators are generally not needed with adequate spacing and good light intensity. If necessary:

  • B-Nine® as a spray at 2500 ppm

Insect and Disease Concerns
Insects

  • Aphids
  • Spider Mites
  • Whiteflies

Diseases

  • Pythium
  • Rhizoctonia

CROP SCHEDULING

Product Form # Liners per pot Total crop time* (weeks)
4″ 1 10-11 – Southern Climate13-14 – Northern Climate
6″ 1 (with pinch)3 (no pinch) 14-15 – Southern Climate17-18 – Northern Climate

 

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