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Despite their toxicity, cyclamen are among the most popular house and garden flowers. Despite the name, the genus is not a plant from the Alps, apart from the species Cyclamen purpurascens, the earth bread. They are also not related to the violet (bot. Viola). The decorative plants come from the Mediterranean area and are native to the Near East and North Africa to Somalia. The warm origin leaves one question unanswered: are cyclamen hardy?
The question regarding the hardiness of cyclamen depends on the species. As the over 20 species of the genus are so widespread, there are some that are hardy and others that should definitely be brought into the house during the cold season in Germany.
The following species are those that can withstand temperatures down to -40 °C and can therefore easily survive the winter without shelter:
- Early spring cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen coum)
- Summer cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen purpurascens)
- Autumn cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen hederifolium)
The following species, on the other hand, can withstand temperatures down to -20 °C and should be provided with winter protection:
- Anatolia cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen cilicium)
- Amanus cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen pseudibericum)
- Propeller cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen trochopteranthum)
- Cyclamen mirabile
- Cyclamen parviflorum
- Cyclamen intaminatum
What is interesting about these species is that they come from the northern range of the genus. A majority of these species are found north and northeast of the Mediterranean, making them hardy. Even species like Cyclamen coum do not die over the winter, even when they are in flower. That's why they're so popular with gardeners who want a touch of color in the dreary winter. Nevertheless, you must pay attention to a few points when overwintering the plants so that the sensitive tubers do not become too moist or overcool.
Set the tubers sufficiently for winter protection deep in the ground. A depth of 5 - 7 centimeters is recommended for this, through which the outlasting organ is protected from cold and condensation water.
Cover the cyclamen with a protective layer from one of the following materials:
- fir branches
- spruce branches
The layer does not have to be thick, just cover the surface above the bulb as much as possible. Do not cover the flowers with the material, as they do not need winter protection.
You can calm the plants over the flowering period into the house fetch. While they will survive snow and even chilly winds, if the buds are covered with a layer of snow, you won't be able to enjoy them. They also start flowering earlier indoors, often as early as December, while outdoors they wait until February. If overwintering is possible, be sure to follow the overwintering instructions for non-hardy species that will follow below.
You do not have to consider other points when overwintering the hardy species. You can follow the general care instructions for these. If a particularly cold winter is imminent, it is better to bring the tubers indoors to avoid possible damage. Likewise, the cyclamen should be placed so that they are not constantly under water in spring, as well as in mild winters.
tip: if you are interested in a cyclamen specimen on the market, you should definitely pay attention to the botanical name. Some producers offer non-hardy taxa as frost hardy down to -5°C, which will definitely lead to the death of the flower if planted in the garden.
Not hardy species
In addition to the resistant species, there are also numerous species that are not hardy and definitely one winter protection require. One of the absolute favorites among cyclamen is one of these: the cyclamen. This ornamental plant can be found in many apartments and can withstand a maximum of -3 °C, which makes it unsuitable for wintering outdoors. Non-hardy species include:
- Cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen persicum)
- Cretan healthy bread (bot. Cyclamen creticum)
- Greek cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen graecum)
- Curly-leaved cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen repandum)
- African cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen africanum)
- Cyprus cyclamen (bot. Cyclamen cyprium)
- Cyclamen balearicum
- Cyclamen libanoticum
- Cyclamen rohfsianum
- Cyclamen somalense
Most of these species come from Africa and are not used to cool temperatures. Nevertheless, like other cyclamen, they are allowed not too warm should be kept over the winter period, otherwise they will wither faster and the leaves will turn yellow and curl up. If you keep any of the species mentioned above in your own home, you should only put them in the garden during the warm summer months. Winter doesn't bode well for these taxa in any form and you need a winter quarters, so that the tuber does not start to rot or the flowers do not get too much winter sun
The location in the winter quarters should bright, but not in direct sunshine. You can even choose a north window as long as the room is bright enough. Light-flooded garages, conservatories, pavilions or stairwells are ideal.
The temperature should be between 12 °C and 15 °C, maximum 18 °C. Therefore, choose a room that over the winter not heated will. Conservatories are also recommended here, as they offer sufficient light and do not need to be heated. Alternatively, you can leave the cyclamen in the pot on a sheltered balcony or patio, as long as you wrap the plant in winter protection fleece.
Water the cyclamen regularly. Since cyclamen should not be watered from above, they also have to survive the winter water indirectly. This means that you only supply water via the saucer or saucer. Make sure that there is no waterlogging and pour away excess water after about 30 minutes.
Add fertilizer even over the winter, only to reduce them in relation to the quantity. If your species goes dormant over the winter, you should not fertilize it during this time.
remove faded flowers
Remove faded flowers regularly. This allows the tuber to collect sufficient energy and nutrients.
tip: when caring for the non-hardy species, be particularly careful to wear gloves. The toxins it contains can be deadly even in small amounts, and even touching the tuber can irritate the skin.