The genus of Calicanto plants

Commonly known as Calicanto, the Chimonanthus shrub plants are a genus that belongs to the Calycanthaceae family, native to China. The different varieties are divided between the species of Calycanthus floridus, with summer flowering in different shades of red and pink, and Calycanthus praecox which produces fragrant yellow winter flowers. The stem is composed of long and supple shrub branches while the foliage is dark green, oval in shape. According to the different varieties, the flowers can be more or less fragrant, small in size and have an intense red or yellow color. The Calicanto specimens are employed and used for ornamental purposes as garden plants, if grown in optimal conditions they grow quickly over time.

The cultivation of the Calicanto plant

Rustic plants, those of the Calicanto species, adapt well to different environmental contexts. The soils they prefer are fertile and above all well drained, if cultivated in optimal conditions these shrubs can reach a diameter of two meters. Generally, according to the different varieties of the species, they are cold-resistant plants, bearing temperatures even below zero. The exposure must be bright and sunny, irrigation is necessary during the summer and especially in periods of drought. The lithe branches do not need pruning and just remove the dry or damaged branches. It is advisable to give organic fertilizer periodically, both in spring and in autumn. Diluted in water for watering,

Propagation of Calicanto plants

Calicanto plants can reproduce through sowing quite easily. It is necessary to plant the seeds in containers filled with a mixture of peaty soil and sand. The most suitable season is spring and thanks to the fast growth of the Calicanto, in a short time it is possible to plant the new specimens. Another propagation technique is by cuttings. Apical tops must be removed from the branches, in spring or at the beginning of the summer season. The cuttings obtained must be treated with rooting powder and then they can be planted in small container pots. In the following weeks they must be protected and placed in cool places, away from direct sunlight. The engraftment is confirmed by the emission of new leaf buds.

The different varieties of the Calicanto species

There are several varieties that includes the Calicanto plant species. The so-called winter Calicanthus is called Calycanthus praecox, it is characterized by the intense and fragrant flowering that unfolds during the winter season, in the months of December and January. The flowers have a waxy appearance, are small in size and pale yellow in color. Another variety is that of Calycanthus occidentalis, quite widespread, producing single inflorescences in shades of dark red. The fragrance is less intense than the winter Calicanto, it recalls the fragrances of red wine. Calycanthus floridus Athens has glossy green foliage with deep veins and in summer during the flowering period, red-brownish flowers open, this variety is also fragrant and full of fruity fragrances.

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