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Plants can play illusions, too. At first glance, this plant looks no different from a banana plant. However, the white, exotic flowers on this plant are miles off from anything that remotely looks like a banana. The white bird of paradise plant is one of nature’s quips. Unsurprisingly, the plant gets the name “banana leaf plant” from this resemblance. Moreover, it is also known as the crane flower. Before going any further, let us make a profile for this tropical plant:
Scientific name: Strelitzia nicolai
Identification: Leaves look like that of banana plants. The flowers look like the beak of a bird and have bluish or purple petals and sepals . Obviously, they make excellent garden plants.
Height: 7 to 8 ft
Habitat: Tropical plant, native to South Africa, but grows in South Florida and California too.
Blooming Season: July to November.
How can I grow a white bird of paradise plant?
Because of the amazing flowers that the white bird of paradise plant bears, it makes a great indoor plant. In fact, it is considered the queen of indoor plants. Moreover, this plant grows fine in the warm outdoors. Moist and rich soil is perfect for the white bird of paradise. However, the plant takes years to reach maturity. In addition, the roots of the crane flower spread quickly. As a result, the roots can penetrate floorboards and tiles. Hence, plant these beautiful plants somewhere away from your home in the outdoors.
The white bird of paradise plant grows best under bright sunlight. Crane flower tends to grow in the direction of sunlight. Yet, direct sunlight can harm the plant. On the other hand, a poorly lit environment can stunt the growth of the plant. As a result, the best option is to grow the plant in diffused sunlight.
One special feature of the crane flower is its ability to adapt. Unsurprisingly, this plant grows just as well outdoors as it does indoors, as long as the temperature is right. A temperature of 65°F to 80°F (18°C to 27°C) is perfect for a white bird of paradise. However, avoid placing it near vents, as hot or cold air can trouble the plant.
Over time, the leaves can gather dust. Firstly, the dust can affect the ability of the plant to photosynthesize . Secondly, it dampens the look of the plant. Careful dusting can keep the plant looking top-notch. You can clean the leaves using an automated mister and a soft cloth.
Use fertilizers only once a month, or before flowering season. As put by Planet Natural, excess fertilizers can tamper with the salt concentration of the soil and harm the leaves. Any regular fertilizer is good for crane flowers.
White bird of paradise grows well in dry regions. As a result, watering the plant once a month is enough. Use a spray bottle or measuring cup to water 16 ounces or 473 ml of water. Use distilled water if possible because tap water can pile up unwanted minerals in the soil that can brown the leaves. Water the plant slowly, as it helps the water to reach the roots better.
With a little care and hard work, you can have a mature white bird of paradise plant in your backyard or on your balcony. However, the plant is mildly harmful to humans and pets if ingested. If you can maintain the precautions and follow the tips, congrats! You’re en route to become a plant parent.
Tropical: Anything that grows close on either side of the Equator, the imaginary line that divides the Earth into southern and northern halves
Sepals: Tough portions of flowers that are present along with petals, but are usually green in color
Blooming season: The months or the season in which a plant bears flowers
Photosynthesize: The process by which plants generate energy from carbon dioxide and water using sunlight
Fertilizers: Chemicals that aid in plant growth
Mister: A device that sprays tiny droplets of water just like mist
Distilled: Water that is boiled into vapor and then condensed. It contains no minerals.