|Mimosa Pudica Growing Instructions|
mimosa pudica (from Latin: pudica "shy, bashful or shrinking"; also called Sensitive Plant and the touch-me-not), is a creeping annual or perennial herb often grown for its curiosity value: the compound leaves fold inward and droop when touched or shaken, re-opening minutes later. The species is native to South America and Central America, but is now a pantropical weed.
Mimosa pudica is well known for its rapid plant movement.
Mimosa pudica with leaves closed like a number of other plant species, it undergoes changes in leaf orientation termed "sleep" or nyctinastic movement. The foliage closes during darkness and reopens in light.
The leaves also close under various other stimuli, such as touching, warming, blowing, or shaking. These types of movements have been termed seismonastic movements. The movement occurs when specific regions of cells lose turgor pressure, which is the force that is applied onto the cell wall by water within the cell vacuoles and other cell contents. When the plant is disturbed, specific regions on the stems are stimulated to release chemicals including potassium ions which force water out of the cell vacuoles and the water diffuses out of the cells, producing a loss of cell pressure and cell collapse; this differential turgidity between different regions of cells results in the closing of the leaflets and the collapse of the leaf petiole.
This characteristic is quite common within the Mimosoideae subfamily of the legume family, Fabaceae. The stimulus can also be transmitted to neighboring leaves. It is not known exactly why Mimosa pudica evolved this trait, but many scientists think that the plant uses its ability to shrink as a defense from predators. Animals may be afraid of a fast moving plant and would rather eat a less active one. Another possible explanation is that the sudden movement dislodges harmful insects.
Germination instructions Growing Instructions Growing mimosa pudica from seed
Soak Mimosa pudica seeds in a container of warm tap water overnight before you plant your seeds. This will help them to sprout faster.
Plant the seeds one-eighth inch deep in a flower pot or cup of soil. Cover the flower pot or cup with clear plastic wrap, but the clear wrap must be removed as soon as your sensitive plant or Mimosa pudica begins to grow out of the soil.
Remove the clear wrap or greenhouse cover and place the young Mimosa pudica in a warm and mostly sunny location once they have popped above the soil.
If you cover any of your containers with clear wrap, do not put them in direct sunlight until you remove the plastic wrap.
Cool temperatures will prevent your sensitive plant or Mimosa pudica from starting to grow leaves. Put them in a room with temperatures between 70° and 85° Fahrenheit.
Do not over water or allow the soil to dry out.
If temperatures are kept between 70° and 85° Fahrenheit, young Mimosa pudica can sprout in less than 7 days. However, if temperatures are lower, it may take 21 to 30 days for Mimosa pudica to sprout.