I have a large indoor cyclamen. Recently, the leaves started turning yellow and dying. The flowers that came up were all deformed. There seems to be a white film on the soil. Is there anything I can do to save the plant?
First of all, cyclamen detest the heat, which is why your never find one growing at its best during the summer. Look for a cool location with bright but indirect light. Also leaves can naturally yellow at this time of year as the plant goes dormant, but you do have reason for concern with the deformed flowers. You may very well be dealing with more than one issue!
Start by reviewing care information specific to cyclamen. The Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service provides details on caring for cyclamen during the dormancy period. It’s recommended that any watering you do be from the bottom to avoid causing the tuber to rot.
With deformity in new growth occurring, you are also going to need to examine that plant thoroughly for pests which may include aphids, mealy bugs, spider mites or thrips. They can all be treated with insecticidal soap spray. A Cyclamen Mite infestation may also occur, but it’s rare and very difficult to control. Use a magnifying glass to look closely and find out what’s going on! The Missouri Botanical Garden has a helpful resource to help you identify Problems Common to Many Indoor Plants, including insects.
We wish you luck with continuing to care for your cyclamen!