The flame tree brings color to the garden. But because he is not used to our weather conditions, there are a few things to consider when planting.© etfoto - Fotolia.com
The flame tree with the botanical name Delonix Regia is also called flamboyant and is not so popular with passionate gardeners and plant lovers: its fiery red flower with pointed ends gives it an almost fiery appearance. The plant belonging to the carob plants and bearing fruit originates in the tropics, more precisely in Madagascar, and is considered an ornamental plant because the fruits cannot really be processed. Although the flame tree is a perfect shade thanks to its wide, dense crown, it is only kept in Europe as an ornamental plant that needs to be pruned regularly. We explain below how to plant the flame tree correctly and where it finds its perfect location.
Interesting facts about the flame tree
In the tropics, the flame tree manages to reach a height of up to 17 meters. The treetop develops quite wide but dense, so that it is often used as a shade in warmer latitudes. The unusual optics in bright green and red-orange make the flame tree particularly interesting for gardeners, as is the bright, almost gray and smooth trunk. The red fruits form drop-shaped collections that can grow up to 50 cm long and thus offer an even more lively sight that is appreciated by many.
Which location does the flame tree need?
The carob plant can unfortunately not take up any location in our gardens because it cannot tolerate frost and cold - which is clear if you think of its original occurrence. So if you want to find a suitable location for the flame tree, it should never be outdoors all year round. In the warm months it can easily decorate the balcony, terrace or veranda in the tub, but in winter and autumn it should be allowed to spend the winter in the house or heated garden shed. Of course, the ornamental plant can also be kept at home all year round. The flame tree needs temperatures from 15 to about 20 degrees Celsius and should of course be allowed to experience somewhat higher temperatures in summer - the sun-loving tree also needs a bright, light-flooded location. In turn, the flame tree does not tolerate wind and drafts well.
Once you have chosen a location, you have to choose the right bucket. This should be large enough because the root system of the flamboyant needs enough space to grow. However, it is not necessary to put the flame tree in tubs for middle-aged trees, a diameter of 70 cm for older flame trees is sufficient if it is cut regularly.
How to plant a flame tree correctly?
If you want to plant a flame tree, you can either buy it as a young plant in the nursery or grow it yourself from seeds. Young plants can be planted quite easily: A suitable, somewhat larger bucket than the root system of the tree should be provided so that it can be planted with Mediterranean plant soil such as oleander or olive soil. If you choose seeds from the nursery or the last tropical vacation, you proceed as follows:
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- Let the seeds soak: put the seeds on a kitchen towel, then put them in a container and dampen them with lukewarm water. The kitchen towel absorbs the moisture and stores it so that the dried seeds can slowly soften.
- If the seed is softened, a small pot or growing container with a mixture of coco and rotting soil can be provided. The soil should be very air-permeable and loose, then the seed can be placed in it and lightly covered with soil and moistened regularly.
- Cover the pot with a foil to accelerate the germination: Usually the seed germinates after a week or two, so very quickly. The pot of seeds should be stored at around 20 degrees Celsius in a bright location - however, direct sunlight should be avoided.
- If the seedling penetrates the soil layer, the film can be removed for ventilation. A lot of moisture is still important, but waterlogging must be avoided.
- Now the pricking should take place soon, so that each seedling gets its own pot - a little fresh soil does not hurt when repotting.
- If you have already grown a small young plant, it will be happy to be placed outside in the warm months. Here, however, you should make sure that there is no wind and that there is sufficient sunlight so that the plant can gain strength.
Because the flame tree grows quickly, it is particularly important to ensure that it is regularly repotted during its young growth phase. Its roots spread quickly and require a lot of space to cope with the location. Held as a small ornamental tree, it is also important to prune regularly. This way, the crown also gets the desired, dense shape. With a sufficiently large bucket, the tree stops growing with sufficient strength to remain an attractive ornamental plant. With young plants from the nursery that have already been grown, you can save yourself some work with cutting in shape, but transplanting and further maintenance will not be missed.