The history of the mimosa plant
The mimosa mimosa pudica or "shameful sensitive plant" is just one of about 500 mimosa species. The mimosa originally comes from South America and grows there in tropical areas. It is a small subshrub and can grow to between 30 and 50cm in height.
What is so special about the mimosa?
The mimosa owes its name to a fascinating reaction of the leaves. With mechanical stimuli, i.e. touch, vibration or a gust of wind, the leaves collapse.
This doesn't happen to the entire plant, just where it was touched. After about half an hour, the leaves of the sensitive plant move back into their original shape.
The mimosa does not only fold its leaves under mechanical stimuli. This magical plant moves its leaves even at night. When there is a lack of light, their leaves also fold down, this is also called their "sleeping position".
This behavior of the plant has also crept into our language. This is how we say "mimosa-like" or "like a mimosa" to someone who is very hypersensitive.
How does this mimosa reaction work?
After touching the mimosa, its leaflets fold up one by one until the leaf is completely closed. However, this also happens with temperature differences, if it is too warm or too cold, the small leaves also fold up. But what exactly happens there?
The mimosa's reaction is called Nastien. The cells in the “leaf joints” lose potassium ions. As a result of the loss of potassium, the cells also lose water and the joints become slack.
The right place for your mimosa
Of course, the location should not be ignored when caring for mimosa. It needs a warm and bright spot to thrive. However, direct sunlight will damage it.
Make sure that your mimosa is not exposed to the blazing sun and that the room temperature is between 18 degrees Celsius and 22 degrees Celsius. In summer you can also put your mimosa on the balcony, just not in direct sunlight.
Protected space is just as important. So make sure that she is not exposed to drafts and is not touched too often. The folding of the leaves is an incredibly exhausting act, and excessive vibration or gusts of wind often cause this reaction.
Tip: The mimosa also prefers high humidity, so feel free to place some water bowls near it. In addition, cigarette smoke should also be kept away from the plant.
Mimosa care: nothing can go wrong!
If you have ever tried mimosa care, you will have noticed how sensitive it can be. Just because of the reaction to touch you should be careful when watering. But don't panic, we have tips for you on how to care for the mimosa and how you can keep it alive for sure.
The right soil for mimosa care
Earth shouldn't fail. The mimosa is content with commercial potting soil.
The mimosa likes it moist
Watering is of particular importance when caring for mimosa. The root ball of your mimosa should always be well moistened. However, before the next watering, check that the top layer of soil has dried a little. However, the mimosa does not tolerate waterlogging, so pour excess water out of the pot or saucer.
Tip: If your mimosa is already well rooted, you can also water it from below.This way you avoid the water coming into contact with the leaves. However, excess water should be thrown away shortly afterwards.
This is how often you should fertilize
Your mimosa needs green plant fertilizer every 2-3 weeks, especially in spring and summer. Dose this lower than described on the packaging. You can easily get this in any garden center.
How often do you have to repot the mimosa?
Most mimosas are also grown as an annual and therefore do not need to be repotted. Spring is the best time for perennial mimosas. Mimosa plants thrive better when they're a little cramped.
However, you can still repot them if they are heavily rooted to add their fresh soil. Don't worry after transplanting, she will look a bit disheveled. The little mimosa will recover very quickly.
Tip: If you buy a mimosa, they are usually in much too small pots. So you can quickly transplant them into a large pot at home.
The blossom of the mimosa
The mimosa not only has interesting leaves, it can also flower beautifully. The flowering period begins in May and can last until September with good mimosa care. The flowers are pink-purple and resemble a dandelion.
Would you like your mimosa to have flowers? Then she shouldn't have too big a pot. Only when the roots feel a limitation does the plant bear a particularly large number of beautiful flowers.
If you want to harvest seeds for propagation, then leave the flowers on the plant until they dry up. Then you can pick them off and dry them until spring.
Can you also multiply the mimosa?
You can multiply mimosa by sowing. For this you plant about 6-8 seeds in potting soil in February-March. Since the seeds need high humidity, you simply put cling film over the pot and poke a few air holes in it.
The pot should be kept warm at around 20-22°C and evenly moist. After a week, the seeds will begin to germinate. When the young plants are big enough, place the strongest seedlings in a pot with a diameter of at least 12cm.
Is the mimosa poisonous?
The mimosa contains toxic substances in all parts. These can be harmful to health if ingested and also cause nausea. So put your mimosa out of the reach of animals and children.
In our articlePoisonous houseplants vs. non-toxic greenery you can learn more about houseplants that are poisonous.
The perfect room for your mimosa
Your mimosa needs a room that has high humidity and is light and warm throughout the day. So what do you think of the bathroom? However, if you have many guests who want to touch your mimosa, a protected place would be better. If your bedroom is always pleasantly warm and bright, then this room is more suitable.
Tips if your mimosa isn't feeling well
Mimosas are rarely attacked by diseases and pests. Your plant looks sad despite good mimosa care and you don't know why? Remove the pot of your mimosa and take a look at its roots.
Some mimosas already have pests in the pot when you buy them, such as slugs. It eats away at the roots and your mimosa gets dry leaves and looks like it was never watered. Unfortunately, these snails lay eggs that are hard to see. If you want to save your mimosa, the only thing that usually helps is to collect the snails and repot them in fresh soil.
The mimosa is not only beautiful and fascinating, with our tips mimosa care is also incredibly easy.Bright, warm, humid and no frequent touching is the only thing they really need. Find more interesting plants in our shop..
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