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Monthly Archives: June 2016

Growing The African Daisy, Osteospermum

Osteospermums are exquisite daisy-like plants that begin in South Africa. They were practically obscure as a scene plant 25 years prior, however are turning out to be more well known as individuals find these lively blossoms. They light up fringes and compartments wherever they are developed.

Osteospermums are an individual from the Asteraceae family, much the same as Shasta Daisies and Zinnias. They like sunny, all around depleted conditions and are viewed as a delicate enduring. This implies in a range where the winters are sans ice, Osteospermums will live and develop without insurance from the chilly. The cultivars with the dim blue focuses will stand some ice, and will be enduring in greenery enclosures promote north.

African Daisy is another name for Osteospermum. The plant starts in South Africa and is some of the time called Cape Daisy. An extensive variety of hues are accessible with pinks and purples being the most widely recognized. New cultivars are being presented the majority of the time with the palette going from light yellow and orange, to white, pink and purple. The petals fluctuate from smooth and consistent to plunged and spoon molded.

The Osteospermum bests when arranged in sunny zones. The blooms open completely in direct sun, and close every night. They blossom best when the evenings are cool. Amid times of the mid year when the evenings are entirely warm, there will be a time of lessened sprouts. At the point when the evenings chill, they will liven go down and put on a new show.

Most Osteospermums are hybrids, so saving seed is not recommended. The resulting seedlings will not resemble the parent plant. If it does not matter what color or shape that the flowers are, then the best way to start seeds is to sow them on top of well drained seed starting mix. These plants need light to germinate and prefer cool temperatures. The common practice of putting seed trays on a heat mat isn’t desirable for these plants. They need cool temperatures in the 64 to 68 degree range.

The best way to propagate Osteospermum is to take cuttings from established plants. Here is an example of how to take and root cuttings.

Prepare a tray of sterile seedling mixture by damping it with warm water until it feels like a well squeezed sponge. Mix that is too wet will promote the growth of mold, and the cuttings will rot before they root.

Select several good side shoots of your Oseospermum. Either pinch the buds out, or select shoots where no blooms have formed yet. The cuttings do not need to put energy into forming blooms before they form roots. The cuttings need to have at least two sets of leaf axils and be a two to three inches long.

Cut the shoots with a sharp knife or scissors just below the leaf node, and strip the leaves off of that joint.

Dip in rooting hormone to promote the growth of new roots. Most rooting hormone has an anti-fungal also. It helps prevent the cuttings from rotting.

With a pointed instrument, make a hole in your mix that is just a little bigger than the stem. Carefully place the stem in the hole and firm the potting mix around it. The cuttings will root best with temperatures between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Put them in a bright area, but out of direct sunlight. Grow-lights indoors are fine, or on a sheltered porch. The cuttings should form roots in 3 to 4 weeks. When they start to put on new growth, they have rooted, and can be hardened off for planting in the garden. These cuttings will branch out and form side shoots if they are pinched back after a couple of weeks.

Osteospermums will grow happily in the garden or in containers. They only ask to be kept well watered. Make sure that the growing medium is well drained though, as they do not like wet feet or soggy conditions.

A general purpose fertilizer for blooming plants is helpful every month during growing season, and dead-heading will promote continuous blossoms. By pinching out the growing tips a couple of times during the summer, a compact, bushy plant will result.

These are plants that can survive under harsh conditions by wilting and dropping top growth. During periods of drought, they will appear dead, only to spring to life once the rains return.

When choosing Osteospermums at the garden center, select plants that are compact and well branched. When planting them, dig the hole the same depth as the roots are, and place your transplant at the same level. Firm the soil around the plant and if mulch is used, leave an area between the stem and the mulch.

African Daisies are a good value in the garden, rewarding you with abundant blooms throughout the summer and fall. All they ask is for a sunny spot with regular watering. They thrive when pinched back, and the cuttings can be turned into more plants quite easily. They are a lovely little flower that is becoming more popular each season and deserve to be included in the garden

The Shasta Daisy

The Shasta Daisy would one say one is of the spines of a perpetual outskirt, with enduring 3 creep wide shimmering white blossoms and yellow focuses on solid stems that grow up to 40? tall, blossoming in June through September. The blossoms make brilliant cut blooms, and in the scene they draw in honey bees and butterflies.

As a young fellow in Massachusetts, Luther Burbank adored the wild oxeye daisies (Leucanthemum vulgare), considered a poisonous weed by the neighborhood agriculturists. At the point when Burbank moved to California in 1884, he started building up his nursery and refining the oxeye. Following 15 years of rearing, Burbank at long last built up a completely new species, Leucanthemum x superbum, which turned into a moment achievement. One straightforward recipe clarification I saw was this: oxeye daisy + English field daisy dust + Portuguese field daisy dust + Japanese daisy dust = Shasta daisy. The genuine Shasta does not have the intrusive attributes of the regular oxeye however in the event that permitted to set seed, a few seeds may return.

The name ‘Shasta Daisy’ supposedly comes from Burbank comparing the crisp white petals to the pure white snow on Mt. Shasta. I have read that the word ‘Daisy’ came from ‘Dad’s Eye’ and morphed into ‘Day’s Eye’ for the similarity of a daisy to the yellow sun with its white ‘rays’.

Shasta Daisies are hardy in zones 4-9 and often characterized by an unusual and somewhat unpleasant odor. They like full sun and well-drained fertile soil with a pH from 6.1 to 7.8 (slightly acidic to slightly alkaline). They tolerate a range of conditions including partial shade but not wet feet in winter. Deadheading extends the blooming season. They are attractive to bees and butterflies but fortunately, not to deer. Propagation is by cuttings or division of the clumps (which should be divided every 2-3 years for plant vigor).

Shastas are best planted in spring after frost has passed, or early fall. When planting from nursery containers, carefully
remove the root ball and check to be sure they are not root-bound. I carefully loosen any roots encircling the rootball. Place in well-composted soil, and water well until established.

The first named Shasta daisy developed by Burbank was ‘Alaska’. Later he crossed that with a wild daisy-like Northern California flower to make a double/triple fringe-petalled variety he named ‘Marconi’ and a triple-quadruple petalled variety ‘Esther Read’. There have now been over 100 named varieties introduced since 1901. [1].

My favorite Shasta daisy is Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Becky’, discovered growing in Atlanta by Ida Mae Gatlin and passed on to her daughter and then to Jimmy and Becky Stewart. This passalong daisy went through a couple of other people and names before Bill Funkhouser joined Wayside Gardens and included it in their catalogs as Leucanthemum ‘Becky’. [2] Unlike many Shasta daisies, ‘Becky’ will stand up to both the hot, humid Atlanta summers and cold northern winters. The tall stems are strong and do not need staking, and ‘Becky’ starts blooming late June to early July when other Shastas are finishing.

Some Shasta Daisy Varieties:
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Alaska’, 18-30”
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Becky’, 36-48”
Leucanthemum ‘Broadway Lights’, flowers opening bright yellow and turning all shades from butter to cream to pure white as they mature, 18-24”
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Crazy Daisy’, early bloomer, fluffy double flowers
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Little Princess’, compact 6-12”
Leucanthemum superbum ‘Silver Princess’, dwarf 12-15”
Leucanthemum ‘Snowdrift’, shaggy double and semi-double 30-34”
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Snow Lady’, dwarf Shasta with 2-3″ white flowers, 8-12”
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Summer Snowball’, large, double dahlia-like flower heads of pure white with no yellow center, 24-36”
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Switzerland’, Multiple flowers per stem, one of the longest bloomers, 24-36”
Leucanthemum x superbum ‘Thomas Killen’, Extra large single flowers with double rows of white petals, and a crested gold center. Because of its thick, sturdy stems, this variety is better suited as a cut flower. 12-30”

About Passionflowers

Numerous individuals without a doubt know this plant at any rate by its name however have you ever pondered what it was named after? All things considered, don’t think it has anything to do with adoration or some other bodily feeling, as it ought to without a doubt be composed Passion bloom for it identifies with the very Passion of Christ. Here are a couple of things concerning those staggering plants.

Give us a chance to go back through time and space until we achieve Rome in 1609. As of now a devout researcher by the name of Jacomo Bosio was chipping away at a bargain about the Cross of Calvary when an Augustan monk named Emmanuel de Villegas, returning from Mexico indicated Bosio drawings of a “tremendously wonderful” bloom developing in the New World. Bosio concentrated on the drawings and was staggered in perceiving the different devices of the Passion: the crown (strings inside the bloom) speaking to obviously the crown of thistles, the three marks of shame were the three nails, the rings coordinated the ropes which joined the Lord, the five petals and five sepals were the ten witnesses, Peter and Judas being missing. He likewise watched that the blooms set aside opportunity to construct and after that stayed open for only one day, presuming that God would permit just the most mindful and commendable ones to see such wonders. This is the place the plant took its name and the natural product originating from it clearly must be Passion organic product. Those different images have been further utilized by Spanish preachers to clarify the riddles of the Passion to the general population of Latin America, including a couple of images the way like five lobed leaves soon turning under the control of the grievers and the nectar drops here and there present would be blood from the holly wounds.

Now, from a less passionate point of view let us get a closer look to those wonderful plants. The genus Passiflora belongs to the Passifloraceae family together with 17 other genuses of much less known plants. The genus Passiflora itself is subdivided in 24 sub-genuses with a total of 465 recorded species. 95% of those species originate in America, mostly Central and South, with two species from North America, P. incarnata (May Pops or May Apple) being the best known. A few species occur in Australia and South-Eastern Asia, none in Africa or Europe. Regarding Africa, though the genus Passiflora is absent, other lesser known genus of the family are present such asAdenia, Dilkea, Ancistrothyrsus, Adenia being probably the best known by caudiciform enthusiasts. Amongst those many species some twenty produce edible fruits though only three are commercially grown on large scale, Passiflora edulis (purple passion fruit or purple granadilla), P.edulis flavicarpa(yellow passion fruit) and P.ligularis (sweet granadilla). More and more are nowadays sold in garden-centers and nurseries for ornamental uses as they display wonderfully coloured flowers, some being also perfumed. Hybridization is quite easy to perform and has given raise to many ornamental hybrids with the added interest of using hardy species (such as P.incarnata) crossed with colourful tropical species to produce spectacular plants able to withstand non-tropical weather.

Passionflowers can be grown outside in suitable climates, requiring well drained soils, sandy ones being perfect as the roots will not live long in compact and soggy soils. They can also grow indoor provided they get enough light and atmospheric humidity, air dryness being quite bad for any tropical plants. You can easily use seeds from passion fruits bought in local stores though result is not guaranteed if they come from hybrids or selected plants which are to be propagated by cuttings or grafting.