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Questions answers

Inside the house, are certain places to be preferred or avoided when choosing where to put my cyclamen?

Yes, give preference to light and avoid heat.
Potted cyclamen needs plenty of light but without direct sunlight. It prefers cool atmospheres. To be able to enjoy its flowers for longer, you can place it in your lounge near a window, (preferably not facing south), and above all be sure to keep it away from radiators. Cool rooms, bedrooms, entrance halls or stairwells are often a better environment. To help it last longer, you can also take it out into the cool of the night, placing it under some form of shelter according to the region. Finally, in a veranda the plant will behave the same as if in a greenhouse.

A friend has just given me a cyclamen. In the symbolic "flower language”, what does this mean?

The cyclamen is indeed a great seducer, with its flowers resembling butterflies and its luxurious colours. And what is more it has a fine meaning in "flower language", being a symbol of sincerity. Therefore you should have no doubt about the feelings of the friend who has given you this plant.

The flowers of my cyclamen have become dull and it seems that the marvellous colour that they had a few weeks ago has faded away. What is happening?

Your cyclamen almost certainly lacks light and its flowers have lost their natural vivacity. Put the plant in natural daylight (though avoiding direct sunlight). You should also be sure to add fertiliser for flowering plants, without which your plant has no nutritional input.

How should I choose a cyclamen when buying one?

For the interior, you can choose a superbly flowering plant which will immediately provide excellent decoration, checking for the presence of buds in the centre of the plant in order to guarantee sustained flowering
For outdoors, you should choose a plant having a maximum number of buds (very few open flowers) which will easily adapt to hardier conditions.

Should I remove dry flowers and yellow leaves from my cyclamen?

To guarantee maximum health for your plant, it is necessary to regularly remove those stems with ruined flowers, stems from which the flowers have already fallen as well as yellow leaves. To do so, take the stem at the base, and pull it away with a sharp movement turning it slightly at the same time.

Can the cyclamen be used for culinary purposes like other plants?

No! This is an ornamental plant.
It is also strongly recommended that you do not experiment in this way as you may suffer respiratory problems. We certainly recommend that you restrict your interest to the plants’ decorative and aesthetic qualities.
On the other hand, cyclamen contains cyclamine which is used in homeopathy for its therapeutic properties.

Is it possible to replant a cyclamen which has been used for decoration in a vase with its roots bared?

If someone decides to clean the roots of the cyclamen to present it as a bouquet (life expectancy approximately 15 days) you should be aware that it is not then possible to replant it
At the end of this period the plant will have used most of its reserves to adapt to the aquatic environment
This new "trendy" use of the plant represents a different way of looking at cyclamen. It must then be considered as a bouquet and no longer as a flowering plant.

How should I water my cyclamen?

Like all plants, your cyclamen would rather have too little water rather than too much! By being aware of the three watering methods described below, you can obtain the best results...
1) You can pour the water on from the top using a long necked watering can, pouring it around the edge of the pot while avoiding soaking the bulb in the centre of the plant. Do this 2 or 3 times a week, waiting until the soil is rather dry to the touch.
2) You can soak the base of the pot in a saucer filled with water and leave the water to penetrate up to the roots.
Careful! No more than 15 minutes at a time, and then be sure to pour away the surplus water. The watering frequency is the same: 2 to 3 times per week.
3) If the soil is really dry, you should totally submerge the pot in a bowl of water, but this "bath" should not last longer than a few minutes.

The leaves on my cyclamen are turning yellow! What can I do !

Your cyclamen is doubtless too warm or has been over-watered.
Remove dead leaves by hand by slightly twisting their stem, then place the pot in a cooler room and leave it alone until the soil has almost completely dried out before watering again. In April, your cyclamen will enter its dormancy period and its leaves will turn yellow naturally. You should then reduce watering and leave the plant to rest in a cooler area. It will survive throughout the summer thanks to its bulb and will start growing again in autumn.

Is it possible to keep a cyclamen potted from one year to the next?

Yes, but with the risk that it will flower less abundantly the second year.
Once the flowering is finished, (generally in June), you should continue to water and fertilise the plant until the leaves turn yellow, but by reducing the frequency. Then stop watering, cut off the dried leaves and leave the bulb in the soil. Store the pot in a cool room with plenty of light. In September, you should re-pot the tuber (burying it two-thirds) and gradually start watering again. The leaves will gradually reappear, with flowering taking place from February/March onwards. Do not forget to regularly add fertiliser for flowering plants.

I live in the Paris area. Can I leave my cyclamen outside in window jardinières all winter long?

Yes, if they are in a sheltered place.
Cyclamen prefers too much cold rather than too much heat, and you are right to put it in an outdoor window jardinière rather than in a room of the house, where it is often too warm for its flowering period to last very long.
This is a rustic plant, in other words it is very resistant to the cold. Your cyclamen can stand temperatures close to freezing and even a slight frost at night. In the Paris area, except in the case of exceptional climatic conditions, you should have no problems in keeping your cyclamens in flower throughout the winter. Nevertheless, be sure to shelter them from the wind and from strong rain.
Tip!... The colder the climate and the darker the days, the less you need to water.

I have just bought a cyclamen. Should I immediately re-pot it in a better potting soil?

Not necessarily…
Your horticulturist has already grown it in a good quality potting soil and you should have no worries about leaving it in its original pot. If you want to plant your cyclamen in a window box, a large pot or hanging basket, or if you wish to combine several colours in an arrangement or pot it alongside other plants, in that case you should select a potting soil with excellent drainage properties as this plant does not like getting its feet wet! You should choose a good commercial potting soil for flowering plants and avoid low-priced products as you risk being disappointed. You can possibly add a little peat, sand, composted tree bark or clay balls (around a third).

I have just been given a cyclamen with very dark flowers which I had never seen before. Are there many other colours?

Yes, around 20 colours
The cyclamen offers a wide range of colours and shades including gentle pink, intense red, deep purple or pure white tones. Certain reds or purples can indeed be very dark. You will also find cyclamens featuring a “flame” effect, (streaked, or with a white strip around the edge of the petals). Others are two-tone, with an “eye”, and have petals which feature a wonderful pink or deep purple shade in the centre which contrasts with their lighter overall colour.
You can have a lot of fun playing around with the colours according to your interior decoration scheme, to the colour of the pot surround or to the occasion being celebrated (Christmas, Halloween, a birth, etc.). You can opt for single colour “cameos”, make heavy use of contrasts or instead choose the repetition of a single colour. Magenta takes on a very bright appearance under an electric light. Allow free rein to your inspiration!

I have seen some amazing beds of cyclamen. What planting advice can you give me?

The cyclamen can produce some marvellous beds in winter. You need to choose a spot which is sheltered from the wind and rain, and put the cyclamen in the soil at the end of August in regions north of the Loire or in mountainous regions, and in mid-October for southern regions.
Be sure to choose plants which have been grown "cold" (for the horticulturists this is 12°-14°C at the end of the cultivation period in the greenhouse) in order to facilitate acclimatisation when moving from the greenhouse to outside conditions.
To ensure a successful flower bed, you need to protect the plants from the rain for 2 to 3 weeks following planting
We recommend that you use the Metis® type (10/12 plants per m2) or else large-flowered cyclamens such as the Latinia® or Halios ® types (7 plants per m2).
You will find further information about creating a cyclamen flower bed in the "decoration" pages of our site.

Should I add fertiliser and which?

Yes of course
Regularly adding fertiliser makes it possible to nourish your plant. As a result, it will remain healthy and completely open its buds. You should add fertiliser for flowering plants once a week, diluting it in the water when watering the plant, observing the dosage shown on the bottle. Reduce this to once every 15 days during the summer. Careful: fertiliser should never be added to soil which is too dry. It is also possible to buy handy little sticks or small squares of so-called "slow-release" fertiliser. Placed in the pot when the plant is first bought, they will continue to work over several months. In this case the nutritional elements are released gradually.

My cyclamen used to be very attractive but now it seems to be fading. Can I make it flower again?

Yes, with certain precautions.
Your cyclamen has perhaps been too warm or overwatered. Or its flowering period may now be over. On the first days of the warm weather the plant naturally goes into its dormancy period. It may be possible to make it flower again by allowing the bulb to rest throughout the summer two-thirds buried in a pot in a cool and light room.

Questions / Answers
Find the answers to all your questions in order to better care for your cyclamen.
  • Inside the house, are certain places to be preferred or avoided when choosing where to put my cyclamen?
  • How should I water my cyclamen?
  • Is it possible to keep a cyclamen potted from one year to the next?