Cyclamen is usually grown in pots indoors. It goes dormant for the summer, but with proper care it will regrow and rebloom in the fall. Exactly when cyclamen goes fully dormant depends on its growing conditions. Warm temperatures propel it to dormancy, but if you keep your home cool your plant might not appear to go fully dormant. Instead it might just lose some leaves and not look its best or bloom for a couple of months.
To encourage reblooming during its growth period, snip dead flower stalks off at the base. Then, as blooming slows, gradually allow the plant to dry out for two to three months. It is going into its dormant stage, and too much water will cause the tuber to rot. A little water is recommended, but you don’t want the soil to remain wet.
Give cyclamen bright, indirect light in the winter when the plant is actively growing. In the summer, when the plant is dormant, it’s best to keep cyclamen in a cool, dark spot with good air circulation.
Cyclamen prefers to grow in organically rich, well-draining soil with a slightly acidic soil pH. For container plants, you can use regular potting mix but then mix some sphagnum peat into the soil to raise the acidity.
When leaves are present, the plant is actively growing. During this period, water whenever the soil feels dry about an inch below its surface. Avoid getting water on the leaves or crown of the plant (part where the stem meets the roots), which can cause it to rot. While the plant is dormant (losing most or all of its leaves), water infrequently only to prevent the soil from entirely drying out.
Temperature and Humidity
Cyclamen plants don’t like extreme heat, drafts, or dry air. They do best in a climate that replicates their native environment, preferring temperatures between 40 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit at night and between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit during the day. High humidity, especially during the winter, is crucial. To raise humidity, keep your plant on a tray filled with water and pebbles, making sure the pot isn’t touching the water (as this can cause root rot).
If you moved your plant outdoors for the summer, bring it back indoors before the weather turns cold. A good rule of thumb is to bring it inside while the temperature is still comfortable for you to open windows.
Feed your cyclamen plant with a diluted liquid low-nitrogen fertilizer every couple of weeks while in full leaf. You don’t need to fertilize cyclamen while it’s dormant.
The cyclamen is a beautiful houseplant commonly sold in supermarkets. It is also called the Persian violet and Sowbread. Cyclamen contains irritating saponins, and when any part of the plant (especially the tubers or roots) are chewed or ingested by dogs and cats, it can result in clinical signs of drooling, vomiting and diarrhea. With large ingestions, these plants can result in cardiac problems (e.g., abnormal heart rate and rhythm), seizures and death.