Growing flowers is a difficult summer experience
"Summer has passed, summer has not been"
For a long time, experts will analyze the anomalies of this summer. And we, ordinary gardeners, will remember it for a long time. And it all started in spring, it was hard: with strong winds and night frosts.
But there was no summer at all, it passed by our region and did not even bother to look at us. We did not wait this year even for a summer-warm week, and, most importantly, there were no warm nights that make the year fruitful.
I must say that we already knew the forecast for a cold summer in early spring. We were warned that it would be cold and rainy. But I didn't want to believe it. However, the reality surpassed all expectations. In our memory, there were no such summer seasons. Indeed, before, even in bad weather years, there were such periods in the summer - from two weeks to a month, when the weather was wonderful, and the plants received a good charge of heat and sun.
However, contrary to all forecasts, in the spring we planted seedlings of watermelons and melons and other thermophilic crops. Somehow I happened to read the very correct words of the famous field grower Maltsev, who believed that growing plants is a game of chess with Mother Nature. At the same time, he said, nature always plays with white pieces.
It is behind her that the first move is - she is the owner of this game with a person. Nature sets the most difficult, unpredictable tasks for gardeners, and we will find out the result of this game at the end of the season. And a person must have the ability to predict, reflect the attacks of nature. It is on the agricultural technology he has chosen, on the correct selection of seeds and planting material, as well as on his personal experience and ability to analyze the experience of previous generations that the harvest ultimately depends.
Our winter-spring preparation for the upcoming summer season went very well. I think that many years of experience in growing vegetable crops, taking into account the mistakes made before, influenced here. Indeed, even in the previous year, we had failures during this period. And in many ways, all gardeners know this, success depends on the soil in which the seedlings are grown. This time we had a universal soil, which we received as a prize from JSC "MNPP - Fart" for participation in the spring competition of the magazine "Flora Price". Thanks to the manufacturers for the quality product. Seedlings of plants in this soil felt comfortable, grew well and developed in it.
At the end of April, the seedlings grown by my hands fell into reliable male hands. This is also a big plus for plants, because, despite all the unpredictable moves of nature this spring: cold snaps, frosts, stormy cold winds, the husband was able, with the help of agrotechnical techniques, covering materials, the accumulated great experience of working with plants and his inherent intuition, to beat and reflect all the attacks of Mother Nature.
But with flower seedlings, it did not work out so smoothly. Here nature was the master of the situation. Although the seedlings were taken out early to the site, they remained throughout the spring in boxes on the shelves made by my husband in the greenhouse, because the cold earth and repeated frosts over and over again did not allow them to be planted in a permanent place in the flower beds.
Plants suffered, languished in small containers. And then they threw away the flower brushes and bloomed right in the greenhouse. At the end of May, the greenhouse was filled with the scent of blooming petunias. There was a lot of planting material, the area for planting flowers was significant, and therefore it was not possible to protect such areas with covering material.
From many years of experience in working with land, we noticed that the earth is warmed from hibernation by May rains, especially thunderstorms. This year they were not, May was cold, sunny with strong winds. And since it is impossible to drive the cold out of the earth without rains, a paradox turned out: with this warm winter, the earth was icy in early June, the nights were cold, and the threat of frost was constantly felt.
When we came to the site after a warm winter, we were happy: at first glance, all the plants overwintered well. And only after a while they began to detect losses - the result of a snowless winter.
But for the first time, and quite magnificently this spring, forsythia bloomed, although it was not sheltered for the winter. All thermophilic shrubs overwintered successfully, but there were attacks among perennial flowers. So the warm winter had its pluses and minuses.
And this spring, for the first time in all the years of work on the site, we gained patience and waited for favorable weather. Even my husband, although he was already in the greenhouse with my boxes of flower seedlings, was tormented and patiently endured all the inconveniences caused to him. Only occasionally grumbled. But no matter how I tried to water my seedlings carefully, nevertheless, drops of water fell on the growing plants of peppers and tomatoes below. In addition, boxes of flower seedlings blocked some of the sunlight entering the greenhouse.
At the beginning of June, many neighbors and acquaintances could not stand it and planted heat-loving summer houses and seedlings of vegetables in the open ground. The reckoning was not long in coming - from June 7 to 8, we had a severe frost. Already in the evening, an icy breath was felt in the air. We walked along the paths and decided whether to cover the landing or not. And they began to cover all the beds as long as there was any covering material - they wrapped up pumpkin, cucumber beds, potato plantings, corn, etc. And in the morning they were horrified: even the covered potato ridges froze in some places - the icy air went in stripes. One large-fruited pumpkin was very frozen, and nothing remained of the corn plantings, except for the whitened and frozen tops spread on the ground.
It was hard for us to look at the grief of those whose seedlings of tomatoes, cucumbers and other crops died. But Mother Nature did not rest on this, and she dealt us another blow in a day.
A stormy gusty wind hit us, destroying everything in its path. For three years we were happy that our huge greenhouse can withstand any winds. This time she could not resist - the joint seam of two canvases of the top of the greenhouse came apart. But the roof did not completely burst. The husband repaired the seam, however, it was not immediately possible to restore the joint to the end, a leak appeared along its entire length. The only thing that reassured me was that when it rained, water poured onto the path, not the garden.
All gardeners had to experience a lot of such non-standard blows during this summer.
And only after June 10, we started planting flowers in the open ground. Having suffered in the seedling bowls, the plants finally felt the spaciousness, their roots were able to master the spaces they needed. But the plant holiday did not last long, the sun hid, and rainy, cloudy weather set in. If there were more or less favorable days, then at that time there was a strong wind.
And the immature plants, which had not yet had time to properly grasp the roots in the ground, shook in different directions, they began a new difficult period. We never tied petunias to sticks, but this year we had to do it, otherwise their long flowering stem was shaking in the wind, and beautiful flowers lay on the ground. As a result, all the rods that the husband and grandson prepared for the decorative wattle fence in winter were used to garter flowers. The making of the wattle fence had to be postponed until the next year.
We have done a lot of work with flower plantations this year, because we have four hundred square meters of them. A lot of summer houses were planted, I will not frighten readers with all the numbers, I will just say that only 120 different varieties of petunias were planted!
And flowering today was peculiar. Petunia, which blooms profusely throughout the season in normal years, bloomed in waves this summer and fizzled out by the end of August. And only giant cascading petunias - hybrids of Tornado Cherry and Tornado Silver bloomed magnificently and delighted us all September.
Different varieties of scented tobacco also behaved differently. Some immediately after landing in the ground threw flower arrows and bloomed. Pleased with the early and long flowering, as well as the smell of the variety Sensation.
Other varieties refused to bloom and began to increase the mass of leaves, and blossomed only by the end of August. This is how the Forest Fairy Tale variety behaved. Fragrant tobacco of the Aroma Green variety looked very unusual outwardly, but it did not exude the unusual aroma promised by the manufacturer this summer, apparently there were no warm nights. In the package of yellow fragrant tobacco from the "Gavrish" company there was tobacco of yellow and white colors, although this year only yellow was badly needed.
Snapdragon also behaved rather strangely. Some varieties bloomed immediately, but the flowering was not long, others refused to show their beauty, and only by the end of August, the entire snapdragon bloomed magnificently and adorned the site.
There are many unusual stories to tell about the behavior of flowers this year. Of the perennials, aquilegia and poppies were very pleased. Aquilegia bloomed beautifully, especially those that were grown from seeds sown last year were gifted with their flowering. Delphiniums were also very pleased, they are also from last year's sowing.
These flowers were soloed among the flowers, starting in June and blooming without ceasing, all summer. And then throughout September they retained their decorative effect. We do not know if they will have the strength for the next year, so they tried to please with their flowering today.
Phloxes also made me happy. Strange, but with this wet and cold summer, they did not get sick with powdery mildew, the foliage was all healthy. Lilies this summer did not bloom as luxuriantly as usual, some did not even bloom, but grew only a stem with leaves. Apparently, after all, this summer was not to their liking, they do not like cold and dampness.
But even the snow that fell did not prevent the tulips from smelling and blooming, all spring they gave us bright and joyful pictures with their flowering. Today we were at the AgroRus exhibition, talked with the beekeepers of our region, everyone complained about the cold summer, especially the cold nights and said that the bees did not bring honey today, they only stored it for themselves so that the bee colony could overwinter. Due to the cold nights, almost no flowers gave us a scent. Every year we had a lot of hawk moths on our site, this year only a few butterflies appeared.
And yet, over the summer, all the ornamental shrubs have grown and got stronger, despite the unfavorable weather. We are very grateful to the staff of the Northern Flora nursery for the plants we received from them as a prize for participating in the landscape design competition.
All of them overwintered well on the growing bed, not a single plant fell over the winter, and in the summer, despite all the vagaries of the weather, they grew up well, fluffed up, Potentilla has already presented us not only with foliage, but also with lush flowering. Next spring, all the plants from the growing bed will find their place in different parts of the garden.
Despite the unfavorable summer, we have received an unusually rich harvest of most crops. We were especially impressed by melons and gourds - in such a summer they grew to the surprise of everyone, the result was stunning. My husband always said that there were three of us: he, me and our land (he called her a horse). And this horse took us out in this difficult summer.
And we will talk about the successes achieved in vegetable beds and melons in the next issues of the magazine. Summer is over. We are not discouraged, we are gaining strength for the next spring, for the new season. We think we will be lucky and the new summer will be warm, favorable and comfortable.
Read the next part. Struggle for the Harvest - A Rainy Summer Experience →
Galina Romanova, gardener
Photo by the author
Difficulties in growing a haretail in the garden
You can please florists with the fact that larugus is a fairly resistant plant in relation to both diseases and harmful insects. However, if a large amount of nitrogen fertilization was applied, this leads to fragility of the stems, and the color of the stems, foliage and inflorescences becomes dark green. To avoid this, you should replace nitrogen-containing drugs next time with horny flour.
I guess the marigolds (Tagetes) need no introduction. Grown - as annuals, although there are perennial species. They are definitely worth settling on the site - if not for beauty, then for the sake of unique useful properties.
Marigolds are amazingly beautiful and incredibly useful for the garden and vegetable garden
It is advisable to land them in a sunny place, partial shade is acceptable. In my shade, they almost did not bloom, although the greenery grew more than in the sun.
Do not rush to land in open ground, wait until return frosts have passed. Somehow my seedlings fell not even under minus, but under a simple decrease in temperature (+2. + 5 ° С). The marigolds were so afraid of the cold snap that they froze in growth forever. They did not die, but for a month they did not come to their senses. I had to send them to compost and remember firmly: marigolds should be planted only after the onset of stable heat!
As soon as the flowers begin to fade, I immediately remove them, and the view is neater, and the plant does not need to spend energy on setting seeds. When there is no rain for a long time, I water it, once or twice a season I can (but not necessarily) feed it with a complex mineral fertilizer. No diseases were ever noticed, pests were affected only once: in a dry hot summer, a spider mite arrived.
This material will help you to understand the types of marigolds. And the seeds can be picked up in our catalog, which contains the offers of many large garden online stores. Select marigold seeds.
Secrets of growing Lupine in the country
Many lupines are considered a wild flower of no interest. And I really liked it, but did not grow near the site. The soil is acidic, solid peat, not at all suitable for these plants. He loves sandy loam and light loam, slightly acidic or neutral. A large selection of hybrid perennial lupines of various colors is now on sale. I bought a couple of bags with a multi-colored mixture and got some seeds of the usual purple from friends. In the spring, I planted it on a previously prepared bed. The seedlings were not very amicable, and they grew poorly all summer, and after winter there were even fewer of them. My dream of thickets of multi-colored lupine seemed already unrealizable, but by summer the bushes had grown well and bloomed, showing their color. The purple ones turned out to be more than others. In the fall, I collected the seeds and simply scattered them under cherries, sea buckthorn, currants, etc. In the spring I found friendly shoots, and in the winter good, strong bushes left. The settlement on the site could be considered valid. It remains to spread the lupine along the edge of the ditch, along the road. There were weeds there. I had no opportunity to prepare the landing site. Throwing seeds into this grass stand was tantamount to just throwing them away. How will lupine cope with such competitors when it barely survived in comfortable conditions in the garden? But the autumn planting experience has proven itself very well. I decided to try it in a small area. When the lupine seeds were ripe, but had not yet spilled out of their houses (the pods crack after about days), she cut down the weeds and spread the lupine stalks. For the company, I added stems of Turkish carnations, also with seeds. And everything worked out! A year later, both lupine and carnation were in bloom. Of course, the carnation was not so chic, because they grew without the slightest care. And it belongs to perennials, which are advisable to grow as biennials. Lupine grows well without maintenance, as at the edge of the ditch there is sandy soil without stagnant water.
If you use seed propagation, then lupine splits by color. Purple is the most dominant color and white is lost the fastest.Pure-grade seeds can only be obtained if spatial isolation is observed. From those that I myself collected, mostly blue, purple, pink tones turned out. You can use cuttings, spring rosettes or lateral shoots in the axils of leaves that develop in summer. This method is only in my plans for the most beautiful ones. There is already one applicant. My seeds turned out to be an amazing color, almost white with a lilac-pink haze.
I needed a lot of lupine to easily get soil improvement, weed suppression, beautiful flowers, mulching and fertilizing material. Then the next stage came when color became important to me. I bought two bags with white and scarlet flowers. Taking into account my experience, planting was carried out in the fall, with dry seeds to a depth of no more than 3 cm, in a specially made bed. Lupine does not tolerate lime and acidic soils at all. Needs phosphorus and potassium elements. Therefore, I added ash, dolomite flour and superphosphate, sand, a little clay. Not watered. Lupine seeds germinate even at temperatures, they tolerate frosts down to -5, -7. Freshly harvested ones have a very useful feature. They are unable to germinate while the ripening period is in progress, which lasts. Autumn planting is completely free from the risk of premature germination. I had seeds at my disposal that had been stored for more than a year, so they did not have this advantage. Scarification and swelling in vivo are clearly beneficial. The seedlings were friendly and strong. On permanent places, white and red planted away from each other. Lupine has a pivotal root system, so you need to immediately plant it in a permanent place or plant it in the phase of real leaves. I assigned a place under the plum for the red ones, and placed the white ones next to the tree. Under the plum, they took root well, quickly bloomed, bloomed the next year. They say that if it blooms in the year of planting, it will be short-lived. Lupine did not want to grow under the tree. I suffered for two years and completely withered away. Increased acidity, lack of light and moisture led to the death of the plant.
Lupine is unpretentious, but it will grow without leaving only in a suitable place, during this figure depends on the conditions and on the purpose of growing. Collecting seeds annually weakens the plant, leading to faster shedding. I cut the bushes at the end of flowering, where they are needed for the first half of summer. In the beginning and full flowering phase, prune for re-flowering at the end of the season. In the fall, I cut off all the peduncles, leave the leaves. Cutting Height At a lower cut, plants are depleted and may die. I leave the minimum amount for the seeds that I need. I use the green cut for mulching, for the preparation of liquid dressings, etc. Lupine is not at all aggressive, with this technology it will not give self-seeding, does not crawl to neighbors. He nobly takes a place, according to his previously known dimensions. Therefore, when planning, I leave a distance of at least 50 cm.
Three lupine bushes grew in the flower garden, cultivated the land for further planting and decorated the landscape. It's time to take them out. These colors have another secret that I use successfully. In summer, in the flowering phase of lupine, dormant buds become unviable. I cut the root collars with a flat cutter and sent them to the compost. All greens and roots were left for fertilization. Later I did not observe any lupine seedlings at this place.
Such a seemingly simple flower has many of its secrets and features. Its beauty and unpretentiousness can win the heart of any gardener.
Growing remontant strawberries from seeds: my personal experience
I'd like to share my experience.
Hello, my name is Galina.
For the first time this year I bought strawberry seeds for growing.
We had strawberries, two beds. One early, the other remontant, I don’t know what kind of varieties. Friends shared.
Propagated them with a mustache. And then in an online store where I bought seeds, strawberry seeds caught my eye.
I decided to experiment. And it was very captivating that new varieties could be grown quite inexpensively - for a pack of seeds it was only 30 rubles if there were 7-10 seeds there.
This despite the fact that in the store for one rooted mustache of a gigella must pay 250 rubles. Zenga -zenga costs 160 in a tiny glass. If you take 30 pieces ... well, no. It is very expensive.
So, I bought the seeds "Droplet of Summer", "Little Red Riding Hood" and others in the online store.
In April, she sowed it in a plastic box with a lid (disposable dishes), poured soil, poured abundantly and sprinkled it on top HOW she salted, sprinkled the seeds on the wet ground. I didn't sprinkle it with anything.
I covered it with a transparent lid from the same box.
I did not open it until they ascended. All went up in two weeks.
Then I aired it once a day, opened the lid for five minutes.
The picture below shows the emerging strawberry. Strawberry sprouts were like that - small at first.
And this strawberry has already grown up, so it is before the dive.
Then, when they grew 4-5 leaves, I opened them into plastic cups (150-gram).
Three weeks later I planted it in the ground. It was somewhere in the beginning of June. The bed is small, experimental.
Then it all grew up like this
And in July they already bloomed, at the end of July berries appeared.
At first there were medium-sized ones. I was upset, they promised the largest.
But then the berries began to grow larger. I'd like to point out that the "Droplet of Summer" variety is beardless, the berry is so fragrant! and sweet. The bush is strewn with berries! 12-15 branches of peduncles on each bush. And each peduncle has 15-18 to 25 berries.
Well, in the picture above, you can see that there are a lot of flowers and berries on each branch.
Now it's October 8, and we still have strawberries on them. It is getting very cool, you will have to cut off all the flower stalks with berries and flowers ... It's a pity. But the bushes need to get stronger in the winter.
I collected seeds from them (from red berries) at the end of August and sowed them. They went up. Now they are only one and a half centimeters each with a sprout, it will not work to plant them in the ground. They are not yet strong, and the cold will soon be.
I think then to plant them in pots, and let them winter at home on the windowsill until spring.
I wonder if they will retain their original properties, it's still F1.
I will land next year, it will be clear, I will definitely share the result!
But "Little Red Riding Hood" is very mustachioed, all the antennae that she gave, I collected and planted on a separate bed in July.
There were no berries yet, and the mustache was dark on every bush.
And the kids, as you can see in the picture, are already giving a mustache.
At first, the leaves were small on the bushes, then they began to grow larger.
The bushes have become large and full-bodied. At first, they were happy that the bushes were getting stronger and growing, then that they were blooming. Then the first berries appeared, the first red!
This was our first experience in growing strawberries from seed.
So now, on this separate bed of mustaches of the "Little Red Riding Hood" variety, I already have big red berries. Of course, not in the same quantity as that of the mother bush, grown from seeds this year, only one peduncle for now.
So I recommend everyone not to be afraid and boldly sow strawberry seeds! Propagate, grow strawberries from seed, it's a very enjoyable experience!
Now I have already found and bought the seeds of Gigantella, Honey taste, Zephyr, Sasha, Lizonka and many others.
I wish you all great harvests.
4. Levkoy gray-haired
Accidentally ended up in my flower bed because I don't like its scent. But my sister brought me where to go, put me in bed. And I didn’t regret it! Bright "candles" of gray-haired Levkoy (Matthiola incana) adorned the flowerbed until late autumn. It's a pity that there was only one seedling: a group, I think, the Levkoi would look much more spectacular!
A flowerbed with levkoy is not only beautiful, but also fragrant
Despite the prevailing opinion that this plant is capricious, Levkoy did not give me any trouble. Watering, fertilizing once a week, pruning wilted inflorescences is a standard set of care works. Diseases and pests were not noticed.
The only negative (possibly due to climatic conditions) is that the leaves at the base constantly dried out, as a result of which, by the fall, my pet became "bare-legged." But I forgave him this shortcoming too, because it bloomed like crazy! The first night frosts (down to -5 ° С) did not harm him, and only a more serious cold snap ruined the stubborn gray-haired handsome man, still blooming. Grown as an annual, although there are perennial species.
The most beautiful varieties and hybrids of Levkoy can be found in our catalog, which contains the proposals of many large garden online stores. Select Levkoy seeds.