Dwarf Powder Puff
There are many varieties, some also
do well in the landscape here, the larger varieties we have that do
well in the landscape here have pink, red or white flowers. The most
common varieties used for bonsai are Calliandra emarginata and
Calliandra haematocephala ‘nana’ both called Dwarf Powder
Puff and they are hard to distinguish apart
The following comments are for the Dwarf Powder Puff.
FLOWERS... Beautiful red flowers
practically year round. You can force bloom it by removing all signs of
blooms--flowers and buds. Place in full sun and fertilize with Bloom
Buster or Triple Super Phosphate. In 18-19 days it will be covered in
flowers. Do only in late spring through summer.
PRUNING... Branches can be heavily pruned. Will tolerate severe
root pruning, but must be protected from the sun for a few weeks. Can
be completely defoliated to produce smaller leaves and a flush of
blooms. Keep new leaf tip pinched off. Readily back buds on old wood.
TRAINING... I wire all secondary and some tertiary branches to
produce fine ramification, this will also give you more area for
flowers. New wood is very flexible, old wood gets brittle, will bend to
a point and then snap.
WATERING... Likes a lot of water in the summer. It will close
it’s leaves in the heat of the day when water stressed. Here in
the winter it’s growth slows dramatically, so be careful not to
LIGHT... Will tolerate lower light conditions of say a lanai or
porch, but for compactness and more flowers, full sun is best.
INSECT/DISEASE... Has a lot of new growth so Scale and Aphids is
common. A soapy water solution will take care of them. If infested use
a systemic insecticide, such as Merit or Bonide.
FERTILIZE... A regular feeding of a balanced fertilizer will
promote more flowers. It likes organics so feed with an organic
fertilizer in between your regular feeding.
REPOT... Minimum night temperatures of low to mid 60s. A younger
tree will need repotted every year or two while an older tree can go
for three years.