Pushkinia: Planting And Care In The Open Ground, Species And Varieties With Photos

The plant Puschkinia is a member of the subfamily Hyacinthia, family Asparagus, but in some sources it is included in the family Lilium. This flower was named in honor of Musin-Pushkin, who was a Russian mineralogist and chemist, as well as a member of the Royal Society of London, and it was he who first collected these representatives of the plant world on Ararat. Pushkinia is also sometimes called dwarf hyacinth, because these plants look very similar, as they are the closest relatives. This genus has only two species and several varieties. In nature, they can be found in Near and Minor Asia as well as in the Caucasus, with Pushkinia preferring to grow in mountain meadows, among shrubs and on wet rocky slopes.

Peculiarities of Pushkinia

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

Pushkinia is among the most spectacular spring first flowers. The bush varies in height from 15 to 20 centimeters. This herbaceous plant is an ephemeroid, its egg-shaped bulbs are covered with thin brown outer scales. At the base of the stem there are 2 or 3 dark green leafy plates of strap-like linear shape. Inflorescences brush-shaped consist of bell-shaped florets of white or light blue color, which have unobtrusive unpleasant fragrance.

Flowering in some cases begins a few days after the leaves appear. The fruit is a juicy capsule with pale brown round-shaped seeds inside.

Even though this plant can hardly be called large, it is very ornamental. Pushkinias look very nice in a rock garden as well as in small home gardens, planted together with other primroses or perennials.

Putting Pushkinias in the open field

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

When to sow

If you decide to grow this primrose from seed, you should be patient.

The fact is that when propagated by seed, the Pushkinia does not begin to bloom until the fourth year of life. Even the first seedlings appear about 30 days after sowing. But the vegetative method of propagation is also ineffective. Seeds are sown into the open soil immediately after harvesting, and this time is usually in June. It is also possible to sow from the second half of September to the twentieth of October, but in this case the freshly harvested seeds should be put on the refrigerator shelf before sowing and care should be taken not to dry them out.

Sowing peculiarities

If the seeds are sown in the winter, then they can undergo full natural stratification, which is very good for the growth, development and health of the plant. But before you start sowing, you need to prepare the site. To do this, take care that there is good drainage, and if the soil is too dense, to loosen it add sand, peat or leaf humus. A well-lit or slightly shaded area can be chosen for sowing. The seeds should be buried in the soil at least 5 centimeters deep, then the surface of the plot should be covered with a layer of mulch (peat) for the winter.

Garden care for Pushkonia

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

Care for Pushkonia just like for other flowers growing in the garden. You have to water it regularly, loosen the ground, remove weeds, feed it regularly and remove the wilted inflorescences in time. To significantly reduce the number of watering, weeding and loosening, it is necessary to cover the surface of the plot with a layer of mulch (peat). For these flowers to develop normally and have a very spectacular appearance, care for them properly and systematically, for example, if you do not remove weeds in time, it will quickly "crush" the fragile little Pushkonia.

Feeding is made in early spring.

For this purpose full mineral fertilizer (nitrophoska, for example) is used, which is evenly distributed on the surface of the plot, taking 50 to 60 grams of the substance per 1 square meter (about a couple of handfuls). Fertilizing should be done even if there is snow. After the soil thaws in April and sprouts appear, it will be necessary to loosen the rows in between.

If the spring is dry, it will be necessary to water Pushkinia, but please note that it especially needs watering during intensive growth of the leaf plates. In summer, it is necessary to weed and loosen the rows in time.

If the bush became yellow earlier than it should or if it is infected with a disease, it should be dug up and certainly destroyed.

Growing Pushkinia is quite simple, and it will certainly give you a lot of pleasure during flowering in the spring time.

Raising Pushkinia

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

Growing Pushkinia, you should remember that it needs systematic replanting. The fact is that an adult bulb over the course of 4-5 years builds up about 5-7 offspring of varying age. These plants become very crowded, which significantly reduces their decorativeness.

During transplanting, be sure to separate the offspring from the mother bulb. In this way there is a vegetative reproduction of puskinia. About how to propagate it by generative (seed) method, described above. The nest of bulbs should be dug up and separate the offspring from the parent bulb. Then they are put away for storage, and with the onset of the autumn period, they are planted in a permanent place, and the distance between the bulbs should be not less than 10 centimeters.

Specialists recommend dividing the bulbs once every 5 or 6 years. Bulbs that are dug up early will not store well. If they are taken out of the soil later, most of the offspring will remain in the ground because they break off from the mother bulb very easily at this time. The time when the bush should be dug up is determined by the condition of its leaves. As soon as they withered, you should proceed to transplanting and dividing.

The bulbs should be removed from the soil and put them in the shade to dry, and then remove the remains of soil and old roots from them. The separated offspring should be sorted by size. Larger bulbs can be planted outdoors in permanent soil or used for indoor baking. Smaller bulbs should be planted in a training bed for rearing. All sorted bulbs should be placed in slightly moistened sawdust or peat and stored in a well-ventilated cool room.

There they should be stored until planting.

Pushkinia should be planted in the open ground in the autumn. The depth of planting depends on the size of the bulb and can vary from 5 to 7 centimeters, and the distance between the wells must be kept at least 10 centimeters.

This flower is able to reproduce quite well by self-seeding. This method of propagation of Pushkinia is an excellent alternative to seed propagation, the main thing is to remember to control this process.

Pests and diseases

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

This plant can suffer from those diseases that small bulbs and bulb plants suffer from. For example, if brown spots appear on the ground parts of the bush, it means that it is affected by gray rot, the causative agent of which is botrytis fungus. This is a fairly dangerous disease, because this fungus is omnivorous, and it can quickly affect other plants. For preventive purposes, experts recommend, watering the bush, trying not to let the liquid get on the leaf surface, not to overfeed Pushkonia with nitrogen, as well as to dig out and destroy affected copies in the shortest possible time. At the initial stage of development of the disease to destroy it use such means as: Champion, Bordeaux liquid, Topaz or Cuproxate.

If the plant is very severely infected, treatment with Skor, Previcur or Fundazol can be used.

Also dangerous is bulb rot, the causative agent of such diseases being a variety of fungi. In infected bushes, the base of the leaf plates turns yellow, then the disease penetrates the bulb itself, from which brownish-red spots form on its surface. This leads to the death of the bulb. This infection can persist in the soil for a long time.

To save the plant, it must be treated in a timely manner with a treatment containing copper. Before planting a bulb, it should be thoroughly inspected, and if it raises the slightest doubt, it is better to destroy it.

Also Pushkinia is prone to such a disease as achelenchoides. It causes the scales of the bulbs to turn brown and cause ring rot. Also, pale brown necrotic spots form on the surface of the bulb near the base.

A diseased bush will have retarded development and loss of ornamental appearance. All diseased bulbs should be burned, and before planting healthy ones, they should be immersed for some time in slightly hot (about 43 degrees) water.

The plant bulbs can damage mice, to chase them away, bait with poison is placed around the area. Also a danger to such a flower is the root meadow mites, which penetrate inside the bulbs, gnawing through their bottom. They eat the inner scales, resulting in rotting or drying of the bulbs.

As a preventive measure, the bulbs should be treated with insecticides before planting. If there is a serious risk of infection, treat the Pushkinia with the same preparations at the site.

Pushkinia after flowering

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

In the fall, after sowing seeds or planting bulbs in the open soil, the Pushkinia has a dormant period. At this time the plant should be prepared for wintering by covering it with humus (layer thickness 20 to 30 mm) or peat (layer thickness 50 to 70 mm). In spring or summer time mulch should not be removed from the area because it protects the plants from excessive weed growth and from drying out.

Bulking Pushkinia

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

Pushkinia is excellent for indoor bulking and its beautiful flowers can be seen already in winter. A few bulbs are chosen for the bunting. They are planted in November in a pot with a diameter of 13 to 15 centimeters and a height of about 7 centimeters. In it poured a mixture of soil, which includes leaf humus, river sand and sod soil, taken in a ratio of 1:1:2. Container for 8-10 weeks removed into a dark cellar, where the air temperature should not exceed 10 degrees and humidity of about 85-90 percent.

Then it is taken into a well-lit room, in which it should not be warmer than 15 degrees, and the flower will need to start watering. After 14-20 days, flowering begins. It is recommended not to throw away the faded bulb, because if properly cared for, it will please you again and again with its spectacular flowers.

Pushkinia species and varieties with photos and names

There are 2 species of Pushkinia cultivated: the prolescent and hyacinth.

Pushkinia hyacinthoides (Puschkinia hyacinthoides)

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

In natural conditions, this species can be found on the mountain slopes of eastern Transcaucasia and northern Iran.

This very beautiful little plant has fleshy, linear leaflets that are about 15 centimeters long and a centimeter wide. The bulbs are about 20 mm in diameter. Powerful flower stalks reach up to 15 centimeters in height. On them there are dense inflorescences oval in shape, consisting of 12-30 drooping light blue (almost white) flowers, reaching 15 mm in diameter, with a deep blue strip along the back of the petals. Up to four flower stalks can grow on the 1st adult bulb.

Blooms last 1.5-3 weeks.

Puschkinia scilloides

Pushkinia: planting and care in the open ground, species and varieties with photos

In nature, you can find such a puschkinia in Turkey, Lebanon, Iran and the Caucasus, and it prefers to grow in meadows and margins among bushes. A compact shrub has 2 dark green basal narrow-linear leaflets reaching 12-15 cm in length and growing simultaneously with flower stalks about 20 cm tall. The peduncles are decorated with fragrant light blue bell-shaped flowers, which vary in diameter from 15 to 20 mm, with a blue band running down the center of each perianth.

The small-flowered cyst-shaped inflorescence reaches 12 centimeters in length. Flowering begins in May and lasts 20 days.

This Pushkinia species has a quite popular variety called Pushkinia lebanotica (Lebanese Pushkinia). Contrary to the main species, it has larger flowers, whose crown parts are bidentate. This variety should be planted and grown in the same way as the main species.

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