Bird of Paradise Flower Farming in India – A Full Guide

Introduction: Hello farmers, We are here with a great information of Bird of Paradise Flower Farming in India. The Bird of Paradise is one of the most colorful flowers in the world. The Bird of Paradise name comes from its spectacular flower shape which resembles a bird’s beak and head plumage.

Bird of Paradise is also known as Crane flowers and it is one of the most beautiful Exotic Flowers in India. These flowers are native to South Africa. Birds of Paradise bloom from September through May and its scientific name is ‘Strelitzia Reginae’.

A step by step guide to Bird of paradise flower farming in India

The brilliant colors and unusual appearance of these flowers have made it exceptionally popular as a cut flower. Therefore, the Bird of paradise cultivated in many parts of the world to generate cut flowers for both domestic and international markets. The major producing countries of a Bird of paradise on a commercial scale are America, Israel, and South Africa In temperate areas like Netherlands, Poland, China, and Japan, etc. this plant is being grown in greenhouses with heating facilities.

The flowers of the Birds of Paradise resemble a brightly colored bird in flight and therefore the name Birds of Paradise.

In India, Bird of Paradise flowers is grown in sub-temperate and sub-tropical regions like Himachal Pradesh, Kalimpong and Darjeeling in West Bengal, Nilgiri hills and the Western Ghats, Bangalore and adjoining areas in Karnataka, etc. The Birds-of-Paradise flowers create the plant an exceptionally attractive landscape plant.

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How to Grow Bird of Paradise Flower.
How to Grow Bird of Paradise Flower.

The Birds of Paradise foliage resembles very small banana leaves with long petioles. The leaves on the Birds of Paradise are arranged strictly in two ranks to form a fan-like crown of evergreen foliage, and glossy green and this making it an attractive ornamental plant.

Types of Bird of paradise plants

Bird of paradise is the common name for two genera they are Strelitzia and Caesaplinia. Both types are tropical, drought-tolerant plants with bright, hot-colored blooms.

Jungle Bird of Paradise

A tropical plant indigenous to South Africa, Strelitzia reginae grows in warm and humid climates. One of the other Strelitzia bird of paradise plants is Strelitzia Nicolai, the white birds of paradise. This Mexican bird of paradise plant, along with a yellow bird of paradise and red birds of paradise, belongs to a group of specimens that are desert plants rather than jungle plants.

The orange bird of paradise is orange-blooming with clumping leaves that shoot 3 – 5 feet from the crown. White and giant bird of paradise flowers blooms white. The white forms are a tree 18 feet and the giant 30 feet tall. The red bird of paradise and yellow color have the same size and shape, but the yellow-blossoming species is hardier. Mexican bird of paradise plant blooms sulfur yellow with a strong fragrance.

The Juncea bird of paradise plant is similar to the orange species, but the blooms are smaller. Mandela’s Gold forms yellow blossoms instead of the typical orange. Dwarf bird of paradise such as humilis and pygmaea grow 18 to 20 inches tall. Caesalpinia pulcherrima phoenix is a red bird of paradise plant but blooms gold.

Soil and temperature requirement for Bird of paradise flower farming

The soil around Birds of Paradise plant farming needs to be kept moist all spring and summer but should be allowed to dry out slightly between watering in the fall and winter season.

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However, tolerant of a range of soil types, Bird of paradise will generate its best growth in fertile, well-draining soil that has been enhanced with organic matter such as well-rotted manure or compost. You can apply liquid fertilizer into the soil before planting, according to the manufacturer’s directions. Bird of paradise plant is tolerant of coastal conditions and can handle some salt spray, but it will not do well too close to the ocean.

The Bird of Paradise plant requires moderate temperatures year-round. They can tolerate temperatures range as low as 55 ºF (13 ºC), but prefer to remain in the 70-90 ºF (21-32 ºC) range. Above temperature 70 ºF (21 ºC), care instructions do change slightly.

Propagation

Bird-of-Paradise plant is propagated either by seed or division.

The plant seeds are woody, brown and small, with tufts of orange on them. When propagating from seed, it will take the newly formed plant up to 3 years to begin blooming. When propagated by division, the procedure interrupts the growth cycle of the parent plant, resulting in a year without blooms. Seedlings take 3 to 5 years to produce flowers, while plants grown from divisions will flower in 1–2 years.

Bird-of-Paradise propagated from Seed

A Bird-of-paradise grown from seed will take 3 to 5 years to bloom. The black color seeds have orange fuzz on one end and are the size of sweet pea seeds and collect, prepare, and plant the seeds as soon after harvest as possible. To increase the germination time, soak the seeds in lukewarm water for one or two days and scarify them (nick the hard seed coat) with a knife or small file. Scarified seeds generally germinate in one to two months.

Germination time can be further reduced by placing the un-scarified seeds in a plastic bag and putting them in a refrigerator at 40-45°F for two weeks. This treatment must still be followed by scarification.

Sow seeds in vermiculite, a one-to-one mixture of peat and perlite, or a ready-made mix to a depth of ½ to 1 inch. The soil should be kept consistently damp until the seeds sprout. This requires patience as it can get anywhere from one month to a year for the seeds to germinate depending on the pre-treatment. To ensure a moist, humid environment during this prolonged period, cover the seed flat or container with a sheet of glass and place it in a warm area that receives indirect light. Occasionally check the dampness of the soil and water when required.

Transplant seedlings individually into individual containers when they have two true leaves. Light fertilization can begin at this phase. The young plants must be ready to transplant into larger pots or the landscape after two to three months.

Bird-of-Paradise propagated from division

The Bird-of-paradise plant is easily propagated by division. Dig up and separate old clumps, dividing those with 4 to 5 shoots into single-stem divisions. For best effect, divide clumps during late spring or early summer.

Re-plant divisions at the same soil depth at which they were previously planting. Maintain the soil moist until roots are established (at least three months), and then begin fertilizing. This process will produce mature, flowering plants in one to two years.

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Bird of paradise flower farming process

If you’re planting Bird of paradise outdoors, till the soil in planting bed to a depth of 12 inches. Work in 4 inches of rich compost or other organic material to enrich the soil and promote excellent drainage.

For commercial Bird of paradise cultivation, planting can be done 60 x 60 cm apart with a planting density of 4 plants/m2

It also cultivated in Pits, with 60 x 60 x 60 cm is made and filled with soil, sand and farmyard manure or FYM at the ratio of 1: 1: 1. Planting must be done either during early spring or at the beginning of monsoon.

A Bird of paradise plant produces tall flower stalks. To keep the flower stalks erect, the plants must be provided with the proper supporting system. Two or three rows of strings along the rows of plants supported by iron poles will be sufficient to maintain to the plants.

Flowering – Once flowering begins in early spring, each plant will produce up to 6 flowers in succession, with each flower being long-lived. Blooming can be continuous from early spring into early fall, provided the plant is cared for. This plant needs little encouragement to bloom, happy with enough light and water for its needs.

Irrigation requirement for Bird of paradise flower farming

During summer months, watering must be done twice a week to keep the soil moist and in the winter, thorough irrigation to the soil once in 7-10 days will be sufficient.

Due to rhizomatous nature and fleshy roots, the Bird of paradise plants cannot withstand waterlogging. High soil moisture is however desirable during the flowering season and uses drip irrigation to overcome waterlogging and improve yield.

Facts about Birds of paradise plants

  • Birds of Paradise plants are the mid-sized staples of tropical bouquets.
  • Birds of Paradise require to be bound together, or supported in some way in larger vases and may bruise smaller flowers.
  • Birds of Paradise plants are often thought of as the symbol of tropical flowers.
  • These plants are medium-sized exotic blooms that instantly evoke palm trees, but do not last longer than a week.
  • Mulching around the plants with a 3 to 4-inch layer of well-composted organic mulch conserves moisture, reduces weed infestation, and provides micronutrients.
  • For best growth and flowering, apply a slow-release, complete fertilizer at a rate of 1 lb every 3 months to a full-grown clump.
  • Bird or paradise soil must be kept evenly moist from spring till fall. In winter only water periodically to maintain the soil from drying out completely.

Fertilizer requirement for Bird of paradise flower farming in India

  • For healthy growth of Bird of paradise, plants need phosphorus-rich fertilizer. Fertilizers must be applied monthly during the flowering season.
  • Well-rotten farmyard manure or FYM at the rate of 4-5 kg/m2 and NPK 20g/ m2 about a month before flower stalk initiation should be applied to get maximum production.

Pests and diseases in Bird of paradise flower farming

The Bird-of-paradise plant is relatively pest-free. Insect pests that occasionally attack it contain scales, mealy bugs, whiteflies, and aphids. These pests can be controlled with systemic insecticides.

Diseases affecting Bird-of-paradise plants include bacterial wilt and root rot. Root rot is a seed-borne fungus disease that can be controlled by soaking the seeds in water for one day at room temperature followed by a 30-minute dip in water heated to 135°F. After cooling and drying process, plant the seeds in clean potting soil.

Companion planting

Plant Bird of paradise outdoors in warm climate conditions with taller tropical plants behind it and shorter flowers in front. For taller plants try bougainvillea, Carolina jasmine, and Osmanthus or sweet olive shrub. Plant shorter flowers in the foreground, for example, agapanthus, sea holly, red hot poker, and alstroemeria.

Harvesting Bird of paradise flowers

Bird of paradise flowers is normally harvested for local and nearby markets when the first floret has just opened. For the distant markets, the flowers harvested when they are showing orange-yellow coloration but have not yet emerged from the sheath as the open florets are likely to break during transportation.

The flower stalk is harvested near the ground early morning while still turgid. After harvesting the flower stems are kept in the bucket full of water. That’s all folks about Bird of Paradise Flower Farming, keep growing flowers.

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