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Cineraria planting and growing

Cineraria is a tender greenhouse subject, but it may be grown as a house-plant, although the conditions necessary to the best results are difficult to secure outside a glasshouse.

The conditions for cinerarias are a cool temperature, frequent repotting, and guarding against the attacks of the greenfly. Perhaps the last is the most difficult, and with one having no facilities for fumigating, it will be almost impossible to prevent the difficulty. A living room usually has too dry air for cinerarias.

The seed, which is very minute, should be sown in August or September to have plants in bloom in January or February. Sow the seed on the surface of fine soil and water very lightly to settle the seeds into the soil. A piece of glass or a damp cloth may be spread over the pot or box in which the seeds are sown, to remain until the seeds are up. Always keep the soil damp, but not wet. When the seedlings are large enough to repot, they should be potted singly in 2-or 3-inch pots. Before the plants have become pot-bound, they should again be repotted into larger pots, until they are in at least 6-inch pots in which to bloom.

In all this time, they should be grown cool and, if not possible to fumigate them with tobacco, the pots should stand on tobacco stems, which should be moist at all times. The general practice, in order to have bushy plants, is to pinch out the center when the flower-buds show, causing the lateral branches to start, which they are slow to do if the central stem is allowed to grow. Plants bloom but once.