Takka (Tassa) belongs to the Takkov family. Homeland – India, Java, Thailand, Borneo.
This plant surprises with the breadth of its range. Different species of takka settle in both sunny and shaded areas, where they successfully develop and produce offspring. They can be found in the mountains, on the sea coasts, at an altitude of up to 2000 m above sea level. Basically, the taka flower grows in warm countries: in Asia, South America, Australia, Africa, on the Polynesian island.
Some varieties are quite successfully grown at home.
Popular Species of Taka Plant
A perennial herb from 50 cm to 100 cm high with a tuberous or creeping rhizome. Some species reach up to 300 cm in height. Young parts of the plant are finely pubescent. The villi form their surface disappear gradually as the plant’s age.
The leaves are basal, large, whole or strongly dissected. They are attached to long, fleshy petioles.
Its flowers are on short pedicels, collected in an umbrella-shaped or cup-shaped inflorescence, bisexual, painted in purple-brown, surrounded by a coverlet. It blooms in June – August
In all species, the fruit is a berry, with the exception of the plantain tack, in which it is a box. The fruit contains numerous brown and dark brown seeds about 5 mm long.
Takka peristadnerezannaya. Received the name for the specific peristaltically cut shape of the leaf plate. The leaves are large, up to 60 cm wide, up to 300 cm long. A flower with two large, up to 20 cm wide bedspreads of a light green hue. Above the bedspreads, green flowers are formed with long, thin, cord-like bracts. The fruit is a berry.
Takka Chantrier has the second name “Black Bat”. This is an evergreen herbaceous plant of the tropics up to 130 cm high. Flowers with maroon, almost black bracts, reminiscent in shape of the wings of a bat or a huge butterfly with long filiform antennae. Due to its unusual appearance, many legends and scary stories are associated with this plant. And the truth, looking at the flower, it becomes creepy.
Whole-leaved taka or snow-white taka or “White bat”. This type of decoration is not only flowers but also large, wide – up to 35 cm, long – up to 70 cm, glossy leaves with deep-set veins. The flower has two large, wide, white bedspreads, which are dotted with purple touches. Above the bedspreads are black, dark purple or purple flowers with thin, long bracts. The fruit is a berry. This species is highly decorative and at the same time demanding the conditions of detention.
Takka leontolepestochnaya. It has greenish-purple flowers with long cord-like bracts. When the plant enters a state of rest, its upper part dies. After resting, new leaves form from underground tubers.
Proper Taka Care
The location. Like any plant in the tropics, a taka flower at home responds well to care if the conditions are as close to tropical as possible. The flower requires bright rooms, prefers bright but diffused light. Painfully reacts to direct sunlight. For this reason, placing it on the southern windows should create a slight shading. The flower can be placed on the north window, but then it will require artificial illumination.
Temperature. Heat-loving plant. In the warm season, prefers high temperature, ranging from 26 to 30 degrees. It is worth noting that taka at home can successfully grow at a temperature of 18 – 24 degrees. Sometimes in hot conditions, it is affected by a fungus. In cold weather, the flower can be removed in a cool room and kept at rest at a temperature of 17-18 ° C for the entire period of rest (October – December). It is important to remember that this culture is afraid of drafts.
Substrate and transplant. The substrate should be loose and consist of – turf land, peat, and sand (2: 1: 1). Another variant of the substrate: peat, perlite, sheet land (1: 0.4: 0.6). Transplanted a year later, in early spring, into a container that is slightly larger in size than the previous one. A drainage layer must be laid on the bottom.
Topdressing. Fertilizing during the growth period from spring to mid-autumn once a month with fertilizers for orchids.
Watering. In the summer, abundant watering is performed, but as the upper layer of the earthen coma dries up. In winter, it is moderate, with standing water, and only when the substrate has dried out 1/3 of the volume. According to the rules of caring for these plants, the soil during the dormant period cannot be over-moistened and overdried.
Air humidity. When caring for taka, it is important to consider that indoor air humidity plays a big role in the tropical culture. Dry air is very harmful to it, therefore, for successful cultivation, measures should be taken to moisten it, especially in the heating season. To do this, you can place a flower pot on a pallet with wet peat and expanded clay. It is useful to use humidifiers or spray the plant several times a day.
The taka plant, as already noted, needs to be kept as close as possible to tropical conditions. Therefore, when growing it, in order to avoid the development of diseases, it is important to observe watering standards, maintain high air humidity and choose the right substrate.
When buying a taka in a store, the florist often encounters the fact that the substrate for it consists of red peat, which is not entirely correct, since it dries quickly from above, remaining wet inside, and this can mislead the plant owner and push it to premature watering. In a waterlogged substrate, the plant quickly rots. To avoid this, you should check the humidity inside the planting.
Taka Propagation by Seed and Rhizome Division
Get a takka from the seeds, and also propagated by dividing rhizomes or tubers.
For propagation by division, the rhizome with a sharp knife is cut into pieces, the sections are treated with charcoal, left to dry for a day in a ventilated place and then planted in small pots.
Very often, flower growers are interested in how to grow taka from seeds, because this method is most effective when propagating a plant. Before planting, the seeds are soaked for 24 hours in warm water. The soil mixture for planting seeds should be light. Sown to a depth of about 2 mm in small pots or containers, watered, a layer of sphagnum moss is laid on top, which helps to maintain soil moisture, cover with plastic wrap and placed in a warm place with a temperature of 25 – 29 degrees. It is necessary to ensure that the earth is constantly warm. It is recommended to remove containers with crops for the germination of seeds in the greenhouse or put them on soil heating. Periodically, crops need to be ventilated, watered or sprayed with soil, maintaining the greenhouse effect, this will contribute to seed germination.
However, propagating in this way, it is worth preparing for the fact that seedlings of taka from seeds at home can appear both after 1 month and after 4 months. Crop care consists of regular watering and the application of instant fertilizers. In winter, watering should be reduced, the plant should be removed to a cool room with a temperature of 12 – 15 degrees. A transplant should be carried out in early March as the flower grows.