Erythrina Crista-Galli: The amazing coral plant for your pot and garden

Erythrina Crista-Galli is the botanical name of Erythrin which is often referred to as the Coral Tree due to the very special morphology of its flowers. Perennial and deciduous shrub of special ornamental value, due to its very impressive crimson flowers. 

Originating from South America and a national plant of Argentina in its natural environment and in climatic conditions with very mild winters, it grows in the form of a tree that can exceed a height of 8-10 meters. In the temperate climate of the Mediterranean it is usually maintained in the form of a tree shrub with a height of 1.5-2.5 meters and a corresponding buoyancy growth.

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It is suitable for planting in both gardens and planting pots and its impressive coral red flowers offer a very intense color wherever it is placed.

It can be grown as an indoor plant, especially in the first years of its development, placed in a place with enough indirect light and relatively warm environment that has the required humidity, away from radiators – air conditioners.

The very special flowers of Erythrin that have a very distinctive aroma appear in clusters creating beautiful crimson “bouquets”, its dense foliage consists of medium-sized triangular leaves with leathery texture, while the shoots mainly in the nearest trunk have small thorns.

It is from species that is not very demanding in its cultivation and like all trees-shrubs of high growth, it just needs a little more care and protection, mainly from the extreme cold but also the heat, in the initial stages of its development.

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Soil: Use a fortified topsoil with very good drainage.

Location: Erythrin is planted in completely sunny places. It grows well in slightly shady places but its flowering is reduced, while it should be protected from the north. In general, to help the plant grow properly and to make it easier to protect it, especially from the extreme cold, by moving it in case of extreme weather conditions, first prefer planting in a pot and placing it in its final position when the Erythrin is more stable. and quite developed. Due to its rapid growth, choose a large size and durable pot, if you think that transplanting is needed, it should be done in early spring and after the low temperatures have passed, while for plantings in flower beds, place it in free places so that it has the necessary space to developed.

Watering: It needs moderate watering, every 2-3 days in the hot summer period, depending of course on the climatic conditions and much more sparse or no watering during the winter, if the ambient humidity and rain are sufficient to supply it. plant in water.

Fertilization: A strengthening preparation for cosmetics in small quantities but systematically every 3-4 weeks during spring and autumn significantly enhances its flowering and faster growth.

Pruning: At the end of the summer, prune the plant to maintain it at the desired height, while the thinning of the indoor shoots, in adult plants, particularly favors their growth. If you want Erythrin to grow in the form of a tree, limit yourself to removing weak-dry shoots and cutting only what is needed to maintain its compact shape and at the same time to circulate the air between the foliage.

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Erythrin blooms from June to September but only adult plants bloom, 2-3 years after their initial planting.

Its propagation is by seeds with division of the roots but mainly by seeds. When the flowers wither, the pods appear, resembling beans, inside which there are seeds. Collect them during the fall and plant in early winter on enriched topsoil. Beds should be placed in a sunny but protected and preferably indoor area. After a few weeks the young plants begin to germinate and in early spring they can be transplanted into a larger pot and transferred to the outside environment.

 

 

 

 

 

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