Coleus, a houseplant that adorns the garden in summer

 Coleus, a houseplant that adorns the garden in summer

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Indoor plants that decorate the garden in summer

Recently I discovered Coleus as a garden plant. Previously, I considered it purely indoor. And in all guides on floriculture, it is described as a houseplant. This is understandable, because Coleus is an ornamental deciduous plant native to tropical Asia and Africa. Once upon a time, all flower shops sold luxurious bushes with beautiful velvet leaves of various colors in pots. On the edges of the leaves there are notches, the edges are always outlined in a different color than the leaf itself.


Coleus is a herbaceous perennial, which is more often grown as an annual. Its stem is ribbed, tetrahedral, juicy. The flowers are collected in a small brush, completely inconspicuous. The thinner the soil, the less often the plant is watered, the faster it blooms. At Coleus, the beauty is created by leaves. If you put it in the brightest place in the room, then the color of the leaves will be the most saturated, and the velvety of the leaves will be the most noticeable. In the garden, Coleus sometimes suffers from the midday hot rays of the sun, so you need to create either an openwork small partial shade or shading at noon. In low light, the leaves lose their brightness, a lot of green appears in them. He can even shed some of the leaves, exposing the stems. This usually happens in winter. Like a tropical plant, Coleus loves high air humidity and warmth. However, it feels good at low temperatures of 16 -18 degrees. He worries if a window is opened above it in a hot room - it shrinks, even sheds leaves, stops growing. Then he recovers for a long time from the shock. In December-January, it practically does not grow. In the old days, I bought coleus of my favorite colors in the store and planted them in pots on flower beds. I left it to death for the winter, because in the spring it was possible to buy new potted plants in the store again. Now I do it differently. Somehow I managed to get Coleus from my friends, the color of which I liked so much that I have been saving it for several years, growing it in the summer in a flower garden in the country, and in the winter on the windowsill in the apartment. In general, I cultivate it as a typical gardener flower. The unusual color of my Coleus is that if you look at it in the light, then its leaves are ordinary black and burgundy with a green scalloped border. But against the light, it all glows with a bright, stunningly pure burgundy color. Therefore, in the garden, I plant it in such a way that most of the day you can see it against the light. And the shore is like the apple of my eye, because I have never seen such a color, and I have not received it from seeds. In fact, Coleus can easily reproduce by seeds. They are sown in February or, if it is not possible to give additional illumination, in March. The ground is the same as for peppers or tomatoes. They dive twice - at the stage of opened cotyledons, if the seeds are sown too densely, and at the stage of two or three true leaves. After the second pick, each plant can be planted in its own glass. In the spring, when the night frosts have completely stopped, the coleus can be moved and planted in the garden. But first they must be hardened. In summer, plants must be watered, preventing the soil from drying out under them. Spray in dry weather. Feed with organic or mineral fertilizers no more than once every 3-4 weeks. If the coleus are going to bloom, you need to pinch the inflorescences. If the plants are stretched, you need to pinch them without waiting for flowering. Then they will begin to bush, and you can sow them again every year. If you get some very beautiful specimen, it is better to preserve it for many years, propagating by cuttings, because coleuses are very easy to cut. This is how I do it with my handsome man: in the fall, when the temperature outside drops to 12 degrees, I cut off half of the plant. I divide the cut piece into cuttings with one or two internodes. I put them in a glass of water, where they quickly give roots. I cut the leaf blades in half, plant the cuttings in cups with earth, cover them with plastic wrap, and put them in a bright place. Now it is important to ensure that in winter the air temperature on the windowsill is not lower than 12-13 degrees, otherwise the roots die. Now the cuttings of my coleus are rooted, and young shoots are growing from the axils of each leaf. Coleus is growing very quickly. Usually, by May, rather large bushes grow, which can be cut in half, rooted tops and planted in a flower garden in the country. The halves of the plant remaining in the cups must also be planted in the garden. They will start to bush. The result is a lush, beautiful flower garden. (To be continued)

L. Bobrovskaya, florist

Watch the video: Selecting Flowers for your Garden


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