Syngonanthus chrysanthus is a small aquatic perennial, native to South America; it forms small dense rosettes, which combine many thread-like leaves, slightly fleshy, rough to the touch, rigid, similar to small tufts of rounded grass, 10-15 cm high; from spring to autumn from the center of the rosette thin erect stems, rigid, 15-25 cm high, which carry small golden-looking flowers with white petals develop. These plants are mainly cultivated as houseplants, in small containers thanks to their charm, the simplicity of cultivation and the ability to decorate rooms with simplicity. The appearance is indeed very ornamental; to the genus syngonanthus belong some tens of aquatic plants, widespread in America and Asia; only this species is cultivated as an ornamental plant.
Exposure is very important for the correct growth of our plants. Placing our pot in an inappropriate place can cause limited growth or difficulty in growing our crops. For this reason it is always advisable to pay close attention to the position, the areas of light and shadow.
The Syngonanthus chrysanthus prefers very bright locations, even when exposed to direct sunlight; plants on the market are usually grown in poorly lit nurseries, so it is advisable to expose them to direct sunlight gradually, to avoid burns on the foliage. Despite the appearance, reminiscent of aquatic plants typical of our climates, it is a tropical plant, which needs minimum temperatures above 12 ° C.
Being an aquatic plant the syngonanthus chrysanthus needs regular and abundant watering, which keep the soil mainly humid, but not soaked with water; every 2-3 days wet the substratum thoroughly, but avoid leaving stagnant water in the saucer. If this happens, radical rot could develop. We periodically vaporize the plant, using demineralized water. Generally it does not need fertilizing.
For a good cultivation, the choice of the soil for our plants is fundamental. It is in fact their main source of sustenance and it is therefore advisable to choose a soil that is able to provide the nourishment necessary for our crops. This plant is grown in small containers, given that in general the plants do not exceed 20-25 cm in diameter and height; an acidic, fairly drained soil is used, not too rich in organic matter. Every 2-3 years it is good to repot the plants, providing new soil.
The multiplication takes place by seed, in spring or in autumn. It is sown on a mixture of peat and sand in equal parts, the seedlings must be kept in a bright place, but not exposed to direct sunlight, and constantly humid.
Syngonanthus chrysanthus: Pests and diseases
As for the attack of parasites and the development of diseases, chrysanthus fears the attack of root rot and botrytis. The latter is a disease due to the development of a parasite that attacks many varieties of plants and is known as gray mold or gray rot. To prevent the problem it is necessary to avoid placing the plant in places with high humidity and prefer dry and dry areas. This will create the ideal conditions for plant growth and those that are less ideal for fungus proliferation. A remedy to eliminate botrytis is the use of special antifungal products.