Platycodon: planting and care in the open field, growing from seeds, photo
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Plant platycodon (lat.platycodon), or shirokokolokolchik, belongs to the genus of the Bellflower family, representing perennial herbaceous plants with flowers in the form of large wide bells, which in nature are most often found in forest glades, edges and on the stone slopes of the Far East, Eastern Siberia, as well as Korea, China and Japan. The name of the flower Platycodon received from the combination of two Greek words: platys, which means "even, wide" and kodon - "bell".
Platycodon is a monotypic genus, since it is represented by only one species - the platycodon grandiflorus, or the large-flowered bell (do not confuse it with the broad-leaved bell). In culture, Platycodon large-flowered has been cultivated since 1872, but wide popularity came to it only at the beginning of the 20th century.
Planting and caring for Platicodon
- Landing: sowing seeds into the ground - before winter or spring, sowing seeds for seedlings - in late February or early March, transplanting seedlings into the ground - in late May or early June.
- Lighting: bright sunlight or light partial shade.
- The soil: loose loam of neutral reaction with a small proportion of sand.
- Watering: the first two weeks after planting - daily, then watered with a moderate amount of water once every three days.
- Pinching: regular. You can slow down growth by spraying the plant with inhibitors in the spring.
- Garter: if you did not take action in time, and the plants are stretched out, organize a support for them.
- Top dressing: once a month with a complex mineral fertilizer.
- Reproduction: seeds, much less often cuttings.
- Pests: mice and moles.
- Diseases: gray rot.
Read more about growing Platicodon below.
The large-flowered platycodon has a fleshy rhizome, thin, straight, densely leafy stems 20 to 80 cm high, on which ovoid or elongated narrow leaves with finely toothed edges are located opposite. The lower leaves form a basal rosette. Both stems and leaves have a bluish tint. The flowers of Platycodon are single or collected in panicles of 3-5, large, wide open, up to 8 cm in diameter, a network of dark thin veins is noticeable on the blue petals. There are forms with dark purple and white flowers. The swollen buds of Platycodon resemble lanterns. Platycodon blooms for two months from mid-July. The fruit is an ovoid capsule with flat, shiny ovoid seeds.
In flower beds, platycodon goes well with gypsophila, tall bells and undersized phlox.
Growing platycodone from seeds
How to sow seeds
Most often, Platycodon is propagated by seeds, which can be sown directly into the ground in spring or before winter, but it is better to grow Platicodon seedlings. Sowing Platicodon seeds for seedlings is carried out in late February or early March. Presowing seed treatment is carried out in this way: placed in a gauze bag, the seed is lowered into a small container with water and the seeds are allowed to swell for two days. In containers for seedlings - boxes or large flowerpots - they place soil for flowering plants, consisting of peat soil, humus and sand in equal parts, carefully loosen it and spread seeds on it.
How to grow a regular bell - but varietal
About whether it is necessary to embed Platicodon seeds in the soil, there are two opinions: some gardeners believe that it is not necessary to close up the seeds, while others recommend to close the seeds, but not deeply - only 3-5 mm, and they need to be covered not with soil, but with a thin layer of sand. After sowing, the soil with seeds is moistened with water at room temperature from a sprayer and, covered with a foil, placed in a heat - 20-22 ºC. Watering crops is carried out only when the topsoil dries up. The first shoots appear in a week or two.
In the photo: Large platycodon flowers
Growing and caring for Platicodon at the stage of seedling development is not much different from the same activities with other crops. Watering is carried out as needed, and after moistening, carefully loosen the soil in the container. At the stage of development in seedlings of 3-4 leaves, they are dived into personal pots with a diameter of about 10 cm, in which they are grown until they are planted in open ground.
Planting Platicodon in open ground
When to plant
Planting a platycodon flower in open ground is carried out in late May or early June, when the threat of return frosts has passed. Find a place for the Platycodon in a sunlit area (although the plant tolerates partial shade well) with loose, rich, well-drained and not very moist soil. The ideal soil for a plant is neutral loam, which contains a small amount of sand.
The root system of an adult plant is vertical, therefore it is important that the groundwater at the site is deep and fragile, so it will not tolerate transplants, especially since Platicodon can grow in one place for more than 10 years. Planting platycodon is preceded by digging the site with the simultaneous introduction of half a glass of wood ash and a tablespoon of complex mineral fertilizer per 1 m² into the soil.
In the photo: Unopened Platicodon flower
How to plant
Dig holes in the area at a distance of 25-30 cm from each other, slightly larger than the volume of the seedling pots. Before planting, the seedlings need to be well watered, and some gardeners, in order to mitigate the stress of the transplant for the plant, are advised to generally lower the seedling into the water "headlong", then remove the plant from the container along with the earthen lump, transfer it into the hole, fill it to the top with earth and lightly tamp it. After planting, the site is watered.
Platycodon care in the garden
Growing Platycodon immediately after planting requires watering young plants daily for the first two weeks. Subsequently, the amount of water for one irrigation is reduced, and the soil is moistened no more than once every three days. After watering, the soil is loosened on the site and weeds are removed. In order to make it easier for yourself to care for the platycodon flower, mulch the area on which it grows: you will have to loosen the soil and fight weeds much less often.
How to grow lobelia - another representative of the bellflower
Caring for platycodon also provides for its feeding with complex fertilizers for flowering plants once a month. Platycodons like to stretch upward, this is especially noticeable in the third year of growth, and to avoid this, you need to pinch them from time to time or spray them in the spring with special agents - inhibitors (for example, Athlete) that slow down the growth of plants. If, nevertheless, your platycodons started to grow, think about what to tie them to so that the flower bed does not lose its decorative effect. And, of course, pick off wilted flowers in a timely manner.
This is how, in general, planting and caring for Platicodon in the open field is carried out.
Photo: White platycodon after rain
Reproduction of platycodon
In addition to seed propagation, which in the case of Platycodon is more reliable than all other methods, you can try to propagate the plant by cuttings, however, experts are skeptical about attempts by those who like to cut Platicodon, and not without reason: only a few manage to bring the process to a successful result. But, as they say, the road will be mastered by the walker, and what do you risk, in the end?
For grafting in the spring, cut off the stem processes with two internodes and with a heel. The rest of the grafting procedure is no different from the traditional one.
Sometimes, in the case when Platycodon grows in sandy soil, you can try to propagate it by dividing the bush. The plant is very carefully dug up, examined and, if there are shoots with buds on it, they are carefully separated with a sterile sharp instrument, after which the sections are sprinkled with ash or sulfur and the cuttings are planted in the ground. We just warn you in advance: do not really count on success, then you will not have to experience disappointment. In the end, you always have the opportunity to sow Platycodon seedlings with an almost one hundred percent guarantee of a successful outcome.
Pests and diseases
Perhaps the main advantage of Platycodon can be considered its immunity to diseases. Sometimes the plant can get sick with gray rot, which usually appears during a period of prolonged dampness. In these rare cases, you should loosen the soil on the site well, balance watering so that the plants do not suffer from waterlogging, and if this is not enough, remove the heavily affected specimens from the site, and treat the rest with a fungicide - a two percent solution of Fundazol, copper sulfate or one percent Topsin's solution -M. It is possible that the treatment will have to be repeated after ten days.
In the photo: Blooming and faded flowers of Platycodon
Of the pests for Platycodon, only rodents are dangerous - mice and moles, from which the root system of plants can suffer. In order to get rid of them, there are many ways, but which of them are effective, it is difficult to say. It is best to let smoke through the underground passages: a rubber hose is attached to the exhaust hole of the chainsaw, the other end of which is lowered into the hole. When the chainsaw starts working, the smoke will begin to flow into the underground dwelling and will smoke out its inhabitants from there. If this method is unacceptable for you, you will have to lay out bait with poisoned cereals on the site, but keep in mind that you cannot get rid of moles in this way.
Platicodon after flowering
How and when to collect seeds
The ripeness of the seeds is determined by the cracking of the capsule inside the flower. Seeds are harvested when the pedicels of the plant are completely dry - usually in September. New varieties with an unusual shade of flowers can grow from seeds collected in their own garden.
In the photo: Platycodon in a flowerbed
Preparing for winter
Since the platycodon is a perennial plant, in the fall its ground part is cut to the level of the surface, and the site for the winter is mulched with peat, humus, sawdust, dry foliage or spruce branches.
As we have already reported, Platycodon is a monotypic plant, that is, it represents its genus alone. But platycodon has many varieties. We offer you a description of the most popular garden plant forms:
- Album - a well-known variety with an erect stem, from 60 to 80 cm in height and with large white flowers up to 8 cm in diameter, streaked with thin blue veins. Plants of this variety bloom from late June to August;
- Shell Pink - bush up to 80 cm high with large pale pink flowers;
- Marisil Blue - a compact bush up to 35 cm high with blue flowers of a beautiful lavender shade;
- Fairy Snow - the most delicate single white or slightly lilac flowers with thin blue veins, blooming on a bush up to 80 cm high;
- Epoiema - an ideal bush for rockeries and rock gardens, only 20 cm high with flowers of a violet-blue hue;
- Snowflakes - semi-double variety with white flowers;
- Mather of Pearl - pale pink flowers on bushes up to 60 cm high.
On the picture:
Some hobbyists grow Ussuri codonopsis (konodopsis translates as "similar to a bell"), which is a close relative of Platycodon, but the plant emits an unpleasant pungent odor, and this, apparently, is the reason for the reserved attitude of gardeners to codonopsis and limits its distribution in culture.
- Read the topic on Wikipedia
- Features and other plants of family Bellflower
- List of all species on The Plant List
- More information on World Flora Online
- Information about Garden Plants
- Information on Perennial Plants
- Information about Herbaceous plants
Sections: Garden plants Perennials Herbaceous Flowering Bellflower Plants on P
Platicodon - planting and care
Platycodon is a perennial plant of the bellflower family. Low stems with dense foliage are just over half a meter high. The flowers are large, reaching 8 cm in diameter, usually inflorescences of 3 - 5 flowers. The color of the platycodon bells is very diverse: white, pink, blue, blue and lilac flowers are monochromatic, but there are also varieties with bright streaks or "splashes" that give a special beauty to the plant. There are varieties with unusual terry bells. Amateur flower growers appreciate very much the dwarf varieties of Platycodon, in which all proportions are reduced - they have a height of only 20 - 25 cm. Thanks to the numerous leaves and a variety of flowers, the effect of a "solid carpet" is created, and the plant will certainly decorate the courtyard of any country house or space suburban area.
The long flowering period of Platycodon (up to 60 days) is another positive quality of the flower.
Platycodon: growing and care
Platicodon is grown from seeds. The seeds are sown in March. Due to their high sensitivity to light, they are sown superficially. The soil for planting platycodon requires loose, loose, it will be good if fine gravel or fine-grained sand is mixed into the loamy soil. Immediately after sowing, close the box with foil and place it in a place illuminated by indirect sunlight. Seedlings tolerate normal room temperature well - 20 - 23 degrees, moderate watering is required.
In late May - early June, flower seedlings are planted in their permanent habitat. To do this, each fragile bush is captured with a lump of earth and placed in the soil of the future flower garden.
Please note: Platycodon does not like to move around, so choose a permanent place to grow it for about 7 years. Watering the flower garden is done carefully and only through a sprinkler.
It is possible to grow platycodon by sowing seeds in the soil of the planned flower bed in the fall, then they must be sprinkled with compost or sifted earth with a layer of 2 - 3 cm so that they do not freeze out. Crops will sprout next year closer to summer. The sown plants develop slowly and bloom only after 1 - 2 years. Very often flowers need a garter, as thin stems break easily under the weight of the flower head.
Platycodon pests and diseases
A plant in good conditions does not suffer from diseases, moreover, it is not susceptible to pests. Only rodents are capable of damaging the root system: mice and moles. Platicodon usually tolerates winter well.
Growing Platicodon at home
If you live in a city apartment, but want to grow such a remarkably beautiful flower, then you can do it. Growing Platicodon at home is not difficult. You can buy a flower in a specialty store, but it is quite possible to plant the plant with seeds in pots with good drainage. For Platycodon to bloom for a long time at home, it needs coolness and bright, but diffused light.
While the bells are blooming, they need abundant watering, but in the cold season, the volume and frequency of watering are significantly reduced. Platycodon is transplanted only as needed in winter, when the flower is dormant.
When planting platycodon and caring for it, remember that the flowers are pollinated, so if you plant several plant species nearby, the varietal traits are eliminated. As much as you want variety, only one variety of Platycodon can be grown on one site.But planting a flower remarkably tolerate the neighborhood of liliaceae, irises, marigolds and pansies. This property of platycodon can be used when laying out flower beds, arranging flower beds and rockeries.
Arenaria open ground landing
Arenaria requires a sunny place and not too fertile light soil (the name itself speaks for itself). The plant is suitable for growing in rockeries, on alpine slides, absolutely winter-hardy as borders.
Seeds need to be sown early: in the second half of February, since the arenaria is growing slowly. Water the seedlings very sparingly, protect from the black leg. At the stage of the 1st true leaf, open the seedlings.
Helipterum is an unpretentious garden flower and does not need any special and special care. It is necessary to water the flower once a week; during the rainy season, watering can be reduced to two times a month. If this is not done, then the flowers will become much smaller. After each watering, it is necessary to carefully loosen the soil so as not to damage the bark system, this will saturate the soil and roots with oxygen.
In order for moisture to stay in the soil longer, you need to mulch it. Peat, sawdust, leaves, hay or straw are perfect for this. Mulching will not only help to retain moisture, but also significantly reduce the number of weeds that interfere with proper growth and lead to the appearance of various insects. Weeds should be removed as needed; they should not be started.
Top dressing and fertilizers
In no case can organic fertilizers be used as fertilizers for helipterum; it is best to apply special balanced mineral fertilizers for flowering garden plants. During the period of active growth, you should feed the flower with fertilizer with a high nitrogen content, then 2 times a month you should apply balanced fertilizers designed specifically for flowering garden plants and with a high content of fluorine and potassium. All fertilizer must be applied exclusively in liquid form and only at the root, without falling on the leaves and flowers.
In the garden culture, about 400 species and varieties of viscarias are known, the most popular of which are the following:
- Viscaria "Holiday" is a mixed variety of culture, including several types of undersized viscarias with multi-colored flowers - peach, lilac, blue, bright pink, white. From the moment of sowing to the beginning of flowering, no more than 30 days pass. The variety is very good for decorating balconies and curbs, you can also use it as a sealant for group planting.
- Viscaria eye "Rumba" is a herbaceous annual, characterized by cold resistance and long flowering period. Brightly colored non-double flowers are abundantly strewn with graceful openwork bushes until frost. The petals are colored lilac, cyan, magenta, white and pink.
- Viscaria "Blue Angel" is a dwarf variety of culture, quite thermophilic in comparison with others. Charming sky blue flowers bloom 45–55 days after sowing in the ground. Feels great in pots and flowerpots, due to which it is widely in demand in decorative landscaping of balconies and open verandas.
- Lychnis viskariya is a perennial form of culture that grows up to 1 m in height. The technology of planting and care is not much different from the cultivation of other species. Bushes winter successfully without additional shelter. Timely removal of peduncles promotes re-flowering. Among the varieties of lychnis, flower growers appreciate the "Red ball" (bright scarlet), "Viskashnee" (snow-white), "Nymph" (soft blue).
Be sure to plant a viscariya on your site, and its delicate, bright flowering will delight you until the fall.