• Delphinium

    There is a nice legend about the origin of the delphinium. The Greek young man decided to portray his beloved in stone. But the gods did not like it, and they turned it into a dolphin, forced to live in the sea. The girl waited every evening for a loved one on the beach. Once swam to her, the dolphin threw an amazing flower under her feet, which she named after her beloved delphinium. Delphinium is mentioned as a soda flower and a medicinal plant in the treatises of Ancient Greece, and in European sodas, the cultural modern varieties of delphiniums appeared only in the XIX century.

    Delphiniums are more than 150 species. There are among them annuals and perennials.

    Perennial delphiniums prefer loamy, rich in whitening, moderately moist soil, with a close to neutral reaction( pH 5.5-6).The landing site must be open, sunny, but at noon shaded. Tall grades( about 2-2.5 m) require a garter to the supports. These plants do not sow single plants. They are planted in a separate curtain according to the scheme of 60 x 60 cm. Long, up to 50-100 cm, inflorescences can contain up to 100 flowers in a brush. Inflorescences may be cone-shaped, cylindrical, pyramidal, oval, highly branched( ragged).Flowers are irregular in shape, with an elongated spur( hence the name is a spur).In varietal hybrids, flowers have a diameter of 3-4 cm. The beautiful palmate-dissected leaves of delphiniums, like those of phlox, often dry prematurely on the lower part of the stems, which quickly becomes ugly. Therefore, before the delphiniums should plant plants that retain decorative throughout the summer.

    Usually delphiniums bloom in July about 2-3 weeks. If you cut flower stalks according to the soil level( without touching the root rosette of the leaves!) At the time of the wilting of most of the flowers, you can cause a repeated flowering at the end of August, though not so abundant. It is necessary to know that repeated flowering leads to a weakening of the plant, and the plant does not bloom so much for the next year.

    Delphiniums are amazingly beautiful plants. There are varieties with flowers of pure tone, there is iridescent, passing from one to another. Very often in the center of the flower there is a peephole of another color, in particular black or white, which gives it a peculiar charm. Particularly well-dressed are semi-double and double varieties. The most interesting for gardeners are varieties from the Pacific group of the spur of the cultural.

    In the gardens of the Northwest, varieties are very popular:

    Black Knight - dark purple;

    King Arthur - purple with a white eye;

    Blue Jay - blue with a dark eye;

    Spring snow - lilac-white with a white eye;

    Pink sunset - lilac-pink with a dark eye;

    Vespers - bluish-pink-lilac;

    Astolat - pink, crimson pink, rosy red with dark eye;

    Pink Sensation - pink iridescent;

    Lilac spiral - lilac with a white eye;

    Million - bright blue;

    Blue Tit - dark blue;

    Naina - lilac-blue with a white eye;

    Summer Sky - blue with a white eye;

    Ludmila - blue with a white eye;

    Blue lace - blue with a white eye;

    Blue bis - pale blue;

    The daughter of winter is white with a black eye, Sir Galahad is pure white;

    Butterball - cream.

    Delphiniums carry a lot of mineral elements out of the soil, so the soil before planting should be well seasoned with organic and mineral fertilizers. Planting holes must be prepared in advance. They are made sufficiently deep, since the delphinium has a rod root that extends to a considerable depth. That is why plants do not tolerate transplants, especially at an older age. The pit should be 40 x 40 x 40 cm in size. Two buckets of rotted compost, 1 glass of ash( or half a glass of dolomite flour or lime), 1 tbsp.spoon of any mineral fertilizer containing nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. It is best to prepare a pit in the spring, and plant a plant in August. When planting the stems are cut at a height of 10 cm. The plant is deepened by 1-2 cm. Before the onset of frost, the seedlings will have time to take root well. Delphiniums are heat-loving plants, they can freeze out during severe winters, so the autumn planted in autumn should be covered with lapnik. In the spring, after melting snow, lapnik should be removed.

    For good flowering in the first year, in the spring, when the plants grow and reach 10 cm, 3 strong stems should be left for strong plants, and for weak plants, only 1. For

    In the future, in the bush should not leave more than 3-4 shoots of peduncles. In spring, when the stems begin to grow, leave only the strongest, the rest cut out under the root. By the way, they can be used as cuttings for reproduction.

    All later shoots should also be removed.

    After frosts pass, the plants are fed with mineral fertilizer. Best for this purpose is the "Rustorin" of the Buisk Chemical Plant or the flower fertilizer of the same plant, but in general any other nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium can be used. It is enough 1 tbsp.spoons for 10 liters of water. Top dressing is poured out but 1 l under the root of each plant. If the growing foliage has a pale green color, then supplement the infusion of weeds or manure. When buds appear, they are given mineral fertilizing, but already 3 tbsp.spoons for 10 liters of water. After the end of flowering, it is necessary to feed the delphinium with phosphorus and potash fertilizers - 1 tbsp.spoon each for 10 liters of water( or an autumn fertilizer Buysky plant - 2 tablespoons per 10 liters of water), use a solution of 0.5 liters under the bush.

    Delphiniums are not big fans of nitrogen, so do not overdo the use of manure or weeds. They are potassium-lovers, so they respond well to the introduction of ash or potassium top dressing( only without chlorine!).They also need boron. The easiest way to pollinate plants on leaves a couple of times per season with a powder of boric acid or pour a solution of boric acid( 2 g per 10 liters of water).

    If after the flowering period, only the inflorescence is cut off, leaving the peduncles with the leaves until they dry up, the rhizomes are essential-

    but will grow and next year will provide a lush bloom. In the autumn, when all the foliage withers, the aboveground part is cut to the soil level. Many gardeners do not make such a short cut, but leave a hemp height of 20 cm, but they always cover the slices with clay, since the delphinium has a hollow stem, and water entering through the cut causes rotting of the rhizome. You can just in case, pour a bucket of peat on the plant to protect the delphiniums from death in the severe winter. In the spring, when the earth recoils, peat is shoveled from the center of tillering and razed around. It will serve as a mulching material under the plant.

    It is often recommended to cut the dolphinium at an altitude of 30-40 cm in autumn. This can not be done, since it has a tubular stem, and water will fall into the funnel during autumn rains, which will cause decay of the rhizome, or, as amateur gardeners do,clay.

    For the prevention of diseases, the delphinium can be sprayed regularly( once every 2-3 weeks) with the drug "Healthy garden".

    Against diseases, you can use "Zircon", which among other things also increases the size of the flower and the intensity of its color.

    From the pests to the delphinium attack a fly-scoop, a spider mite. With regular spraying "Healthy garden" pests of the plant do not touch. But if you do not have this drug, spray it once every 3 weeks with "Fitoverm" or "Iskra-bio", starting from the moment of cherry blossom. By the way, the self-protection of any plants is strengthened by regular fertilizing( once every 2-3 weeks) with organic fertilizer "Gumi" or microbial fertilizer "Extrasol".

    If a delphinium fly attacked, then cover the soil with peat. The fly does not like peat and will fly around the delphiniums. Sometimes aphids colonize aphids."Perimor" works well against it, as well as a preventive spring spraying "Healthy garden"( 2-3 times in May-June).

    In damp summer delphinium can get powdery mildew. Correct the matter easily: do not water on the leaves - and it will not. But the plant does not save the rain, so you will have to use blue spraying( Bordeaux liquid, homie, copper sulfate) or use Zircon, calcined soda( 3 tablespoons per 10 liters of water).

    Sometimes there is a black spot or bacterial wilt In both cases, "Phytosporin" or Zircon is a good help. "

    Delphiniums, generally speaking, are not perennials, they are rather juveniles, because they require division every 3 years, otherwise you can suddenly lose them. They, like the phlox, the middle of the bush becomes rotten. It should be cut out. The transplant can be done in May, but in the Northwest it is better to do it in August. We need to dig a bush, divide it into separate parts, cut out the middle, and plant. All the sections must be covered with ashes well.

    Multiply delphiniums by dividing a bush, cuttings or seeds. You can divide 3-4 year old shrubs into 5-6 parts. Each baby should have 2-3 buds of renewal and a good root system. Then the plant will blossom already next year. But, as already mentioned above, delphinium is difficult to take root, so sometimes flowering is postponed for a year. To help the plant, systematically feed it with "Phytosporin" plus "Gumi".If there is "Extrasol", then add it for 1 tbsp.spoon in every 10 liters of solution. Spray "Zircon" in the first year of planting( every 2 weeks) or use the "Healthy Garden".

    Cuttings cut in spring, when they grow to 5-10 cm, at the very base of the root neck. They should not have a hollow part of the stem below. The lower ends of the cuttings should be pollinated with ashes and "Kornevin".

    Ensure that the soil does not dry out. Regularly water and spray "FeroVit" together with "Zircon".In autumn, rooting cuttings can be planted in place.

    At seed reproduction the parental properties are not transferred, therefore you become a breeder yourself and you can get unknown varieties of hitherto. Freshly picked seeds( they mature in August, for this purpose it is necessary to leave faded brushes on the stems) immediately sowed in a greenhouse. Seedlings appear in the autumn and can freeze in the spring, so they should be covered with lapnika for the winter. To not bother with this, it is better to sow seeds right under the winter( end of November).In the spring, shoots appear, they should be planted on 2-3 plants in one container or be weighed according to the scheme of 10x10 cm and in August planted in place according to the scheme of 40 x 40 cm. The next year the seedlings can blossom.

    If you sow seeds on seedlings at home, then they must be stratified( cooled down).For this, containers with seeded seeds should be buried in the snow( on a balcony or loggia) or refrigerated for a week. Then put in a warm room to light. There is a nuance: as the seeds of the delphinium are very small, they are not sprinkled with soil during sowing. The moistened earth is compacted, the seeds are scattered over the surface and covered with a film until emergence. Or, when sowing on the seedlings of the house in March, snow is placed on the soil in the tanks and the seeds are sown on the snow. After melting, he will suck seeds into the soil by half. The containers are put in a plastic bag, it is tied. Shoots are poured through a syringe, the needle of which is inserted into the ground. When the plants grow older and start to fall to one side, a match must be podgresti to them. After the threat of frost passes, seedlings can be planted either in school until the next spring, or directly into place. But it's important not to allow the weeds to hammer them, but to dry the soil.

    All delphiniums look beautiful in group plantings or among other flowers in the center of flower beds. But in the latter case it is better to use lower grades( 1 - 1.5 m).For them, the planting scheme is 45 x 45 cm. They also fit for the background in mixborders or workouts. Delphiniums with phlox, rudbeckies, and lupines are well combined. There are undersized dwarfs, only 50-70 cm tall, for which there is enough and 30 x 30 cm.