Diascia flowering plant belongs to the family Narochnickaya. This genus comprises 68 species that are evergreen or deciduous tropical annuals perennials. This plant comes from South Africa, where it grows mainly in mountainous areas.
This plant is quite popular among European gardeners. As a rule, in the mountains prefer to grow perennial species, and on arid plains ― annuals. Diascia cultivated in the open ground as a border plant or in the flower bed, and it can be grown in containers or hanging constructions.
Diascia Plant Care And Cultivations
- Flowering. Beginning flowering falls on the first days of June, and it ends with the first frosts.
- Landing. Seeds for seedlings are sown from the last days of February to the first ― March, seedlings are transplanted into open soil ― in the second half of May.
- Illumination. Needs a lot of bright light.
- Soil. It should be slightly acidic, moist, not too nutritious and include in its composition a little sand.
- Irrigation. In the hot dry period, as well as after pruning carried out in the summer, watered often and abundantly. Systematically if the summer rains, then Diascia watered sparingly, but do it systematically.
- Fertilizer. The flower is fed regularly 1 time in 4 weeks, for this use mineral fertilizer for flowering garden plants, while the dosage recommended by the manufacturer on the package should be halved.
- Clipping. When the bushes bloom for the first time, the stems are shortened by ½ of their length.
- Reproduction. Cuttings and seed method.
- Pest. Slugs and snails.
- Diseases. Stem and root rot.
Features of Diascia
Depending on the kind of shoots Diascia can be creeping, erect or decumbent. In natural conditions, the height of the Bush can reach up to 100 centimeters, but in a culture, they are not higher than 20-35 centimeters, while part of the shoots they can stretch to 0.6 m. Small sitting opposite leaf plates are painted green, their shape is linear-elliptical, and the edge is serrated.
Tubular flowers in diameter reach about 20 mm, perianth they have a pentagonal: at the base of a pair of upper lobes there is a spot of yellow color, as well as spurs, 3 lower lobes have a larger value compared to the upper ones. During flowering, an apical racemose inflorescence is formed, consisting of flowers of pink, orange, white, purple, salmon or other colors.
Flowering bushes in the first days of June and flowering ends with the first frost. Some species are highly resistant to frost and can withstand freezing to minus 8 degrees, and sometimes to minus 15 degrees. However, as a rule, in temperate climates, this flower is cultivated as an annual.
When grown in the garden, this plant is most often planted in mix borders or in rock gardens, in order to fill the voids between the bushes of large plants. Also, Diascia can be planted around the perimeter of patios and paved areas, still it lengthwise gardens paths. This plant looks great in both combined and single plantings.
Cultivation of Diascia from seed
As a rule, Diascia from seed grown seedling method. Sowing seeds for seedlings is carried out in the last days of February or the first ― March. To do this, use the cassette, which is filled with loose soil. In each of the cells to sow 3 seeds. Also, for sowing, sometimes use wide bowls. In this case, the seed material is connected to the sand (1:5) and seeded.
You do not need to fill the seeds with soil from above, instead, they are only slightly pressed into the pre-moistened substrate, and then the container is covered with glass (film) from above. For growing seedlings, a weakly acidic soil mixture with a small content of nutrients, which consists of sand and garden soil, is suitable.
In order for the seeds to appear seedlings, the air temperature should be maintained at a level of 18 to 20 degrees. The first seedlings should appear after 10-15 days. Immediately after that, the containers with crops are transferred to a cool place (from 10 to 15 degrees).
Remember that you can not allow the soil mixture to dry in the container, but also make sure that the liquid in it does not stagnate in any case. Immature seedlings are recommended to be watered with a sprayer. When growing seedlings in a bowl, 15 days after the emergence of seedlings, it will need to dive into individual cups.
During the growth of seedlings need to spend a few pinches of the tops of its shoots, in this case, the bushes will grow more dense and spectacular. If seedlings of ampel varieties are grown then after it grows and gets stronger, it is planted in pots or containers.
Diascia planting in open ground
What time to plant
Diascia seedlings are planted in the garden only after the ground is well warmed and frosts of the spring return will be left behind. As a rule, this time falls in the second half of May. However, before you start planting seedlings in the open ground, it should be prepared.
To do this, it is transferred to the street every day for some time, the duration of such sessions is gradually increased. After the young plants will be able to stay in the garden all day, they can be planted in the open ground.
To grow a flower, you need to choose a well-lit area that has reliable protection from the wind. Suitable soil should be moist, slightly acidic and not very nutritious. It is recommended to make sand. The lowlands, where there is an accumulation of water, for planting Diascia not suitable. Best of all, it will grow near the southern wall of any structure.
When landing between the bushes need to observe a distance of about 15 centimeters. Flowers native to definitely well watered.
Often and abundantly watered Diascia necessary when the weather is hot, and in the flowering period. But remember that to allow stagnation of liquid in the root system of flowers cannot be, as they react very negatively. When the bushes are watered, loosen the surface of the soil near the plants, and pull out all the weeds.
Feed the plant is relatively rare, only 1 time in 30 days. To do this, use a solution of fertilizers for flowering garden plants, while its concentration should be quite weak. If the soil is too many nutrients, the bushes may not bloom at all. In addition, in the too fertile soil, there is an elongation of the shoots of Diascia, which it loses its decorative effect.
When the first wave of flowering is over, all the stems of the bushes need to be shortened by ½ part. Then for 7 days you often and abundantly watered in order to grow new shoots. During one of the watering, it is recommended to use a solution of complex fertilizer instead of water. After a little time Diascia buds will begin to appear again, and then start the second wave of flowering.
Diseases and pests
This plant is highly resistant to fungal diseases. However, if the soil is regularly observed stagnation of moisture, it can cause the development of stem and root rot. Creeping varieties most affected by slugs and snails, in order to protect the stems of a plant from pests, they need to raise from the soil surface.
Care Diascia at home
Indoors hanging plant is mainly cultivated varieties of Diascia, for whom care is quite simple. While clumps of young shoots from them straight, as the Bush varieties. However, when the height of the stems is about 30 centimeters, they will begin to fall down.
At the bottom of the planting basket or pot make a good drainage layer, which can protect the root system of the flower from the stagnation of liquid in the substrate. Potting mix for growing need to choose a slightly acidic, friable, and containing a small number of nutrients. The optimal composition of the substrate: wet peat (or leaf soil), garden soil and perlite (or coarse sand), they are taken in equal shares.
Watering and feeding
Watering should be abundant, but it should not allow stagnation of moisture in the substrate. Feed the plant regularly 1 time in 15-20 days, for this purpose use liquid mineral fertilizer in a weak concentration. Organics for feeding Diascia not suitable. Do not overfeed the Bush, because of this, its shoots weaken, become elongated and they do not form flowers.
All withered buds, as well as faded stems, it is necessary to cut in time, in this case, the Bush will actively increase young shoots. When the first wave of flowering comes to an end, it will be necessary to shorten all available shoots to 50 mm. Cut bushes often and abundantly watered, as well as in the substrate make fertilizer. After quite a bit of time in the bushes grow young shoots, which observed the formation of buds. Then the Bush blooms again.
Diascia basket varieties can decorate any room as well as a terrace, loggia, balcony, veranda or other areas. For planting shrubs using containers or window boxes, alternatively, you can use the suspension structures, namely, baskets or pots. The flower looks great in large pots.
Diseases and pests
When grown in indoor conditions, this plant is very rarely sick. As a rule, problems with it arise only with an excess of nutrients in the soil mixture. That is why experts advise not to feed the flower to avoid overfeeding.
Reproduction of Diascia
How to grow Diascia from seed was discussed above. Also for the reproduction of this plant can be used and cuttings. Rooting of stem cuttings is carried out in the last summer weeks. To do this, they are planted in a moist soil mixture and kept at room temperature. In autumn, if you want to propagate the plant and root cuttings.
In the spring, as planting material, you can use segments of shoots that remained after pruning the overwintered Bush. The length of the cuttings should reach about 8 centimeters. When the cuttings take root and begin to grow actively, to stimulate tillering, pinch the tops of the stems.
The types and varieties
In this plant, the length of the hanging stems can reach 0.5 m. the Flowers are painted pink.
Rounded relatively small leaf plates are painted in a pale green shade. On their surface, there is a dense pubescence consisting of soft hairs. The length of the flower stalks reach about 25 cm, they formed the flowers are dark pink in color, the surface of which has a set of red dashes.
In the diameter of the flowers reach about 20 mm, thanks to the forward-facing spur, they have a very spectacular and unusual appearance. This type is not afraid of freezing to minus 15 degrees.
In the southern and Western part of England, this species is cultivated as a perennial, but in the Netherlands, in the winter it freezes. The length of the stems is about half a meter. The bulk of the foliage is located at the base of the Bush, in the autumn it is painted in a brownish-red color. Dark pink flowers in diameter reach about 20 mm.
In temperate climates, this species is an annual, which has a branched Bush, reaching a height of about 0.3 m. Flowering begins after the length of the shoots will be equal to 7-10 centimeters. Glossy small leaf plates, painted in dark green, are mainly located at the base of the Bush.
On the peduncle formed many flowers, reaching a diameter of about 15 mm, which can be painted in different shades of pink, in the throat they have a yellow spot.
- The pink Queen. The flowers have a pinkish milky color.
- Apricot Queen. Bushes decorated with orange blossoms.
- Salmon Queen. The flowers are painted in pinkish-orange color.
- Basia. This annual plant blooms twice during one season. Velvety drooping flowers of rich pink in diameter reach about 20 mm.
- Ruby Field. Inflorescences of dark pink hue.
Diascia Blackthorn Apricot
This hybrid shoots lodging, and spur flowers are large, they are painted in warm shades of pink: from salmon-pink to light apricot.
How did this hybrid garden form, experts do not know? This plant is characterized by its simplicity and power. Its drooping shoots are decorated with lush glossy foliage of dark green hue. In pinkish flowers in the throat is a dark spot.
This garden variety of unexplained origin in height can reach about 0.4 m. On the stems grows lush glossy foliage of rich green color. Cherry-red or dark pink flowers in diameter reach at least 2.5 cm In the throat they have a spot of purple hue, and above it is clearly visible yellow depression.
This garden form is very popular with gardeners and it is often grown for sale. Bush has a height of about 0.3 m, with a length of about 40 mm foliage. Not very long lush peduncles consist of many small flowers in diameter reaching up to 1.5 cm, their Corolla tapered, and in the throat is a spot of yellow hue. This form is great for filling in spaces between larger plants, and for the preparation of the compositions in containers.