Initial care crucial
for prized blooms later
EVERY year, at the time of various flower shows-cum-competitions, one resolves to do better next time, but when the next time comes the exhibits are again found wanting.
The first show of the season is the chrysanthemum show that is held sometime in December. It is best to start preparing for it now. For this you can follow these tips to stand a better chance.
The foremost thing is the upkeep of the plant. I am emphasising this because it is at this stage when the basal leaves that are mostly carried with the first life cycle of a plant get destroyed because of insects and disease attack.
It is easy to control these maladies. In fact addition of a tablespoon full of Thimet (10 gm granules) or furadan will take care of various insects problems. Mix it with upper layer of pot soil. Also spray Indofil M-45 at 10-15 days’ intervals at 2 gm to a litre of water to check leaf spots that are caused by fungi. The sprays should be done thoroughly, especially on the lower leaves.
When it comes to feeding the plants, we
are over-zealous. The result: More of foliage at the cost of a quality
bloom. Some gardeners use liquid manure made out of fresh cowdung. It is
a good source, but do not add much. A prolonged application in
concentrated form will not only expose your plants to the danger of
dying but may give immense foliage at the cost of the bloom. According
to Dr G.S. Sidhu of the Department of Floriculture, PAU, Ludhiana, a
good weekly or need-based application of liquid manure of ‘weak tea’
colour has no substitute. It should be given till the day of bud colour
break, that is when the bud just starts showing colour. There is no
other magic feed like it. Try it.