The tetrastigma plant is a member of the grape family. The genus unites about 100 species that can be found in nature in the northern part of Australia and South Asia. In the middle latitudes, it is grown at home and is called “indoor grapes.”
Tetrastigma is a large liana, which is decorated with lobed foliage. Under natural conditions, a plant can reach more than 50 meters in length. Small flowers are of no decorative value. It is very easy to grow such a vine indoors, and here it can grow incredibly long, but most often it is regularly shortened to 200-300 cm. Tetrastigma is characterized by rapid growth, so in 12 months its length can increase by about 100 cm (depending on the conditions of detention).
Caring for tetrastigma at home
Even an inexperienced florist can easily grow tetrastigma in his home. This vine is distinguished by its unpretentiousness, but still there are certain features in its cultivation.
Tetrastigma refers to light-loving plants that need a lot of light. The light is necessary bright, but it must be necessarily diffused, because due to direct rays hitting the sheet plates, burns can form on them.
In the warm season, the vine needs warmth (the temperature should not drop below 23 degrees). In winter, she needs coolness (from 15 to 17 degrees), but make sure that the room is not colder than 12 degrees because this can cause the bush to begin to throw off the foliage. Drafts can also harm the plant.
Watering and humidity
Tetrastigma grows normally at a low level of humidity, which is typical for living rooms. However, it is still recommended to moisten its foliage once a week from a spray bottle, but only if the bush is warm. With a cool winter, you do not need to moisten the foliage.
You should choose a watering mode that completely eliminates the drying out of the clod of earth in the pot. In the spring-summer period, on average, the vine is watered 2 times a week. With a cool winter, the amount of watering is reduced to two per month, while it must be borne in mind that the soil mixture in the pot should be a little damp all the time.
For planting indoor grapes, a loose soil mixture saturated with nutrients is suitable, while it can be slightly acidic or neutral. In order to make a suitable soil mixture, you should combine garden, sod and deciduous soil, and also perlite (1: 2: 2: 2). Also, at the bottom of the pot, which must have holes, you need to make a good drainage layer.
The liana is fed only during the growing season, which is observed in spring and summer. Fertilizers are applied to the substrate at intervals of 2 times a month. In the event that the growth of the bush is very fast, then the frequency of fertilizing can be increased up to 1 time in 7 days. For this, experts advise using organic matter and complex mineral fertilizers.
During the first two years, when the growth of the vine is most intense, it will have to be transplanted several times a year. Older specimens are subjected to this procedure systematically once a year. Tetrastigma tolerates transplantation quite well. The new container should be taken a couple of times larger than the old one. After the bush is planted in a tub, reaching more than 30 centimeters in diameter, it becomes very difficult to transplant, in this case, it is recommended to systematically replace the three centimeter top layer with a fresh soil mixture.
There is no particular need to trim the vine. But if you carry out pruning, then the tetrastigma will transfer it well. When the bush grows up, it will have to be cut in order to contain growth. However, remember that you should never touch the young foliage with your hands, as well as cut it off, because there is a possibility that it will fall off along with part of the shoot. The grown flower needs support, but it is recommended to install it in advance.
How to propagate by cuttings
Indoor tetrastigma can be easily propagated by cuttings. The tops of the stems are used as cuttings, on which there should be one bud and two grown leaf plates. The lower cut is treated with a solution of the drug, which enhances root growth. For rooting, cuttings are planted in a mixture of sand and peat, or they are placed in a glass of water. In order for rooting to go faster, cover the container with cuttings from above with a film, while the air temperature should be about 24 degrees. Rooted shoots are planted in a pot filled with soil mixture, suitable for growing adult vines.
Diseases and pests
Tetrastigma is highly resistant to diseases and harmful insects, but if you take care of it incorrectly, then problems with the vine can begin. If the humidity of the air is too low, then because of this, spider mites can settle on the bush, they suck the juice out of it, depleting it. You can understand that pests have settled on the liana by a thin cobweb and a powder coating. To save the flower, you need a warm shower (water temperature is about 40 degrees). If the pests remain, then it can be treated with an insecticidal solution.
If a mealybug settles on a liana, then a whitish bloom should appear on its leaves. Remove this plaque with a damp sponge, after which the bush is sprayed with an insecticidal preparation or folk remedy (infusion of garlic, tobacco or calendula).
If you take care of a flower incorrectly, then a number of problems can arise with it:
- due to poor lighting, stretching of the stems is observed;
- if the light is too bright, yellow spots form on the foliage;
- yellow spots on the leaf plates also appear due to watering the bush with hard water;
- if the vine has been exposed to excessively low temperatures, then dark spots form on its foliage.
Types of tetrastigma with a photo
Among flower growers of middle latitudes, the most popular type is Tetrastigma Vuanye. It is a large liana that lignes over time, which is evergreen. The petiolate leaf plates of the palmate shape are colored dark green, their seamy surface is pubescent. When grown at home, the bush almost never blooms, but sometimes it is still decorated with small flowers of a pale green color.
Tetrastigma lanceolate is also grown by flower growers, but much less often. Unlike tetrastigma Vuanye, the leaves of this species are more massive and dark green in color. However, the rest of these 2 species are very similar to each other.
Tetrastigma obovate – this species differs from the others in that the oval leaf plate is attached to the petiole with a sharp end, while its top is blunt. The foliage is colored dark green, there are teeth on the edge, and on the lower surface, there is a pubescence consisting of villi.