Tuberose (Polianthes tuberosa) is such a beautiful creation that can give a soothing vibe to anyone. But the problem arises when the attractive inflorescences cannot express themselves with white fragrant flowers.
Even back 6 months I was not fully aware of the matter when my tuberose was not blooming. I know you are in the same situation right now. But don’t worry. I am here to assist.
The quick question: Why won’t the tuberose bloom?
There are many reasons behind this problem but the main culprits are lack of sunlight, water stress, humidity stress, pests, diseases, excess nitrogenous substances, nutrient deficiency, and maturity issues.
So, here are the details of those causes and their easy and effective solutions.
Before entering the main part, you can shortly make an idea from the table-
|Lack of sunlight||Need 6-8 hours of full sunlight|
|Water stress||Water when the soil gets dry|
|Humidity stress||Keep the humidity constant in the soil and environment.|
|Nutrient deficiency||Apply dilute fertilizers properly|
|Root bound||Repotting of the plant is mandatory|
|Excessive nitrogen||Don’t use excessive fertilizers|
|Maturity issues||Propagate bulb after the end of winter|
|Diseases||Use bactericides or fungicides|
Why Is My Tuberose Not Flowering – 9 Major Problems + Solutions
1. Lack of Sunlight
First of all, I should mention the problem of sunlight scarcity as light is the most important requirement for a tuberose plant. To continue its physiological processes, tuberose needs bright and direct light which will be perfect for its blooming.
Due to the sunlight requirement, tuberose grows in summer. Ignoring this portion or unconsciously, if you place them in a shady place or moderate sunlight, they won’t get the appropriate light to prepare their food.
As a result, they won’t be able to make complete food to fulfill their body requirement and won’t supply enough energy for blooming. Thus, the absence of sunlight will negatively affect tuberose blooming.
To keep your plant in a vigorous state, allow it to get 6-8 hours of sunlight every day. It should be planted in such a way that any other trees or objects can create a shady situation for them.
As the sunlight depends on the day length and planting position, make sure that your tuberose is getting the morning bright light, not the afternoon scorching light. Otherwise, the leaves will be burnt due to excessive sun rays.
2. Water Stress
In the second position, water stress must be mentioned with great importance. In my opinion, after sunlight, water stress is the most critical issue for tuberose to handle as I observed in many gardens.
Tuberose loves water but not water-logged state. That means you have to always maintain the moisture level perfectly in the soil and around the leaf surrounding.
My friend was saying yesterday that he waters his tuberose plant regularly and also in a perfect way maintaining all other criteria too but still it is not blooming. That means he has a good irrigation or watering system but not a well-developed drainage mechanism.
As a result, the extra water hinders the health of the root system and pressurizes the whole plant to wilt which reduces the blooming possibility.
In the same way, underwatering also affects them. As they are sun-loving plants, they need a lot of water to prepare food in such a sunny conditions. If you fail to provide it properly, the leaves will be brown and droop and the plant may die too.
Don’t allow the water to dry. Keep your plant watering regularly at the amount it requires. In the case of pot planting, you can create a hole under the pot for extracting the unsaturated water. You may use a moisture meter to check the moisture level. (Our pick: XLUX Soil Moisture Meter)
In the case of garden planting, you may use sandy soil at the subsurface portion so that water doesn’t stand below. Again, water your plant when it gets dry. Don’t irrigate again though the soil is already wet.
3. Root Bound
The third one which is root bound can be a blessing for your blooming if you can use it properly. It means repotting the plant when the roots of the plant are not well-adjusted to the pot after getting large.
Tuberose plants should not be repotted often. Let your plant reach the wall of the pot to increase its strength by taking nutrients from every portion of soil remaining in the pot.
But if you don’t transplant it to the other pot though it is in a root-bound condition for many days, it will start damaging. The root will not get proper space to be nourished which will force the plant’s internal metabolism.
Observe your plant regularly to see if its system is perfectly going on or not. After 2-3 months of seedling planting, it may need repotting if its growth and development are absolute.
In this case, prepare a new pot with perlite, moss, and soil mixture, uproot the plant, and complete the procedure of repotting. After that, water the plant moderately and take care of it. A 10-12″ pot may be perfect for a fully matured plant.
4. Lack of Nutrients
Think of your tuberose plant. You have exposed it to a great amount of sunlight. Again, you are always putting it moist to supply water to the leaf for food production. But to take the water from the root zone to every leaf surface, doesn’t it require a lot of energy?
Certainly! But what is the source of this energy? Let me answer. Some nutrients are present to continue this overall system by supplying ATP or energy to make the photosynthesis system undisturbed.
In case of less nutrient availability, tuberose cannot get proper energy to run its food processing system and it gets weakened. Thus, blooming is stopped.
Provide fertilizer to your plant during the early spring before bud initiation. For better foliage and bloom growth, use a dilute bloom booster fertilizer which may slowly release nutrients into the soil and help the plant to absorb them properly. (Our pick: Espoma Organic Bulb-tone)
5. Humidity Stress
Humidity means the amount of water present in the air. To be more specific it indicates the moisture present in the soil and microclimate around the plant. The humidity effect is a crucial term for a tuberose plant.
If you want a blast of blooming, you must provide a water-saturated or moisture-retaining condition to the plant both in the root zone and shoot or foliage zone. Otherwise, the cell sap will dry and the plant will face stress.
Again, excessive humidity, normally found in precipitation of a couple of days works as pernicious for your tuberose plant. Hence, you can’t get the best blooming period.
Water your plant perfectly to keep the moisture level consistent your plant as tuberose is a summer-loving flower. Sprinkle water through a sprinkler when the atmosphere is too dry.
6. Excessive Nitrogenous Stress
I have already spoken about nutrient factors. But still, I want to discuss nitrogenous substances especially though it is included under nutrients.
Well, this is an over-fertilizing issue, not a deficiency factor. There is a special effect of nitrogen if it remains much in a tuberose plant soil which is harmful to the plant. Excess nitrogen creates bacterial attack in the plant which is expressed through brown spots in the leaves.
During a severe attack, plants lose their strength to conduct physiological activities and the foliage starts to become stunted with no blooming issues.
Don’t use excessive fertilizers on your plant. The plant has a growth mechanism in its own body. Fertilizers can only regulate or enhance the steps. So fertilize your plant with great concern and at the specific times when it is needed in early spring and late summer.
One more thing, don’t use fertilizers directly in the root zone. The better way is to dilute a few drops of fertilizers in one gallon of water and spray it on the whole plant along with applying it in the root zone with watering.
If you prefer to use a fertilizer stick, then place it in the corners of the pot rather than pinching it near the root. Such fertilizing may facilitate your blooming and will not create any excessive fertilizing cases.
A fragrant tuberose inflorescence may not express its beauty for disease attack. Tuberose plants are generally affected by these plants.
- Alternaria leaf spot
- Bacterial leaf spot
- Grey mold on flower
- White mold
Let’s get a solution to recover from this problem.
If your plant is affected severely and the root system is damaged, uproot that plant. Otherwise, it will initiate damage to the other plants.
If you can get only a few leaves attacked, then remove those leaves from the plant. The possibility of affecting other plants or other parts of that same plant will be reduced.
Don’t apply excess watering before eradicating bacteria from your plant. Because bacteria can spread with water. So if you water them a lot, they will spread to the whole garden soil.
You can also try industrial bactericides or fungicides if they are available to you (Our pick: Monterey LG 3174 Ready to Use Fungicide & Bactericide for Control of Garden & Lawn Diseases)
But in my opinion, before applying industrial products, you should use some homemade remedies for the plant’s betterment. If they don’t work, then go for industrial things. Here are some homemade recipes for you.
Neem oil preparation
Add 1 teaspoon of detergent,1/2 tablespoon of neem oil, 1/4 teaspoon aloe vera powder, and a few drops of oils to 1 gallon of warm water. Mix properly and spray in your plant.
Use 10% or 20% bleach solution to your plant which is made of water and bleaching powder.
Like other plants, the tuberose blooming functions may also be hampered by the different insects.
- Bud borer
- Vine weevil
- Spider mites
To control pests, I will suggest you hand-pick the aphids and small insects if they are in small numbers.
You can also rely on their natural enemies like the ladybird beetle but it won’t be much effective for you in case of a large population of insects. Again, you should not wait for that beetle because meanwhile, it can cause great harm to your plant.
So? The next choice should be homemade recipes. Let’s check them-
Recipe-1: Baking soda solution
You can use 4 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 gallon of water. Mix it properly and spray it on the affected areas.
Recipe-2: Neem Oil solution
You can check the neem oil preparation from the diseased part.
Recipe-3: Alcohol Mixture
Mix half a cup of alcohol in 1 quart of water and spray it on the plant. You can use this for severe attacks.
If you are still disturbed by them and want a better solution. Then apply the best insecticide for tuberose(Our pick: BioAdvanced 502570B Dual Action Rose & Flower Insect Killer Insecticide)
9. Immature Stage
The knowledge of the immature stage of a tuberose plant is quite important like other factors. You may have planted a tuberose bulb properly, but if it remains in a dormant stage, the seedling initiation will be late and you won’t get perfect blooming through the presence of summer.
On the other hand, if you plant the bulb in winter, it may get affected by different pathogens which are not expressed in the seeds. In this way, the pathogen will be spread in the plant and that plant won’t provide any blooming.
A tuberose bulb should be placed 3″ under the surface soil. If you dig more than that and place the bulb or corm in that hole, it will take more time to get out, breaking its dormancy. Apart from that, small bulbs also may not initiate new healthy seedlings because of nutrient deficiency.
Again, avoid planting bulbs in winter. The soilborne pathogens will suck the bulb cell sap, will make it weak and stop blooming in winter as humidity retaining is tough in winter. So plant the bulb at the end of the spring or autumn after the completion of blooming.
Types of Tuberose Not Blooming
Tuberose Never Blooming
The first one is the category in which tuberose plants never bloom. This is caused due to ignorance of bulb or seed selection from which new plants are propagated.
Before propagation, a healthy, matured and disease-free plant should be selected. The bulb or seed from such a plant initiates a new vigorous plant. But if they are contaminated with diseases and other pathogens, flower formation does not occur.
Tuberose Partially Blooming
Next, I will talk about those plants which produce flowers but not at a satisfying range. This is mainly caused due to lack of proper sunlight, humidity stress, watering stress and pest and disease attack.
Because of these reasons, the plant becomes physiologically injured and thus stops blooming after a certain period of stress.
Tuberose Once Blooming
Well, in such a condition, a tuberose plant blooms only one time. When a tuberose plant faces over-fertilization, excessive nitrogenous materials in the soil, nutrient deficiency and root bound, it cannot get further energy for producing food and thus the vegetative growth becomes stunted with the end of blooming.
The last type is the unopened blossom. This type is uncommon as it cannot be found in all gardens. In this type, the plant can produce enough vegetative parts but flowers or reproductive parts are annihilated.
An unopened blossom means flowers come in the inflorescence, but after that the top of the flower becomes yellowish-brown and it doesn’t open anymore. It remains under its sheath and gets rotten after a certain period.
This is caused by pest and virus attacks. As the top portion of flowers and leaves are soft, insects love them as their food. But when they bite at that place, it creates a wound.
As a result, the virus can easily get its way to enter the flower and spread throughout the whole plant. This entrance facilitates vegetative growth but demolishes reproductive enhancement. Thus, the flowers die remaining unopened.
Do Tuberose Bloom More Than Once?
Yeah! You can enjoy the beautiful blooming of a tuberose plant for several years. If they are in a healthy state and maintained properly, they can create their internal energy for bulb formation and flowering.
After getting a certain range, that means at their maturity you can’t expect flowers from them. But before that, perfect caring can help them to bloom.
How To Keep Tuberose Blooming
If you want to keep your tuberose blooming, try to meet the below-mentioned requirements.
You can complete your propagation with a seedling, bulb or seeds. The most appropriate way is to propagate through bulbs. Bulbs are the swollen part of tuberose stems.
After choosing a healthy bulb, plant them just after the end of winter. Thus, the frost attack won’t happen to the newly planted bulb. Besides, it will get proper time to be prepared for flowering.
Remove the larger bulbs after every blooming season. This will help the plant to use energy in its foliage growth and prepare for the flower initiation in the next spring. You can store the bulbs in a cool place for propagation.
As I explained earlier, moisture retention is one of the most important parts of tuberose caring. So, to keep the moisture level perfect, you can use natural mulches like water hyacinth, husk, straw etc. or artificial mulches like coal, polythene etc.
These mulches will also keep the bulbs away from birds and other natural disasters. Again, the weed infestation will be reduced and the plant will get a healthy life.
Caring Guide For Tuberose
|Soil type||Sandy loam and well-drained soil|
|Sunlight||Full sunlight of 6-8 hours|
|Watering||Water when the plant needs|
|Fertilizer||Use dilute fertilizer twice a year, before flowering and during vegetative growth.|
What is the benefit of tuberose blooming?
The flowers can be used for ornamental purposes, in the perfume industry and in making oils. It is a sign of peace and harmony. That’s why they can easily create a gentle environment.
Is tuberose annual or perennial?
Tuberose is a perennial plant. This plant loves to grow in warm weather. A tuberose inflorescence with flowers can remain vibrant for 7-10 days in a cool place.
How long does it take for tuberose to bloom?
Around 4-5 months. If you can provide all the necessary elements properly, tuberose blooming will occur almost in July and lasts to September.
Finally, I have to end this discussion with tuberose. If you are thinking why won’t my tuberose bloom, then simply get back to the problems and match it with your plant.
Whatever the cause is sunlight problem, nutrient scarcity, moisture stress, maturity state, pest, disease and so on, you can use the solutions provided here to make your plant revive and be alert for the next blooming.
Take care of your beautiful tuberose plant intensively. Thus, you may be gifted with a beautiful blooming.
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