Baptisia Is An Unpretentious Prairie Symbol. Care, Cultivation, Reproduction. Photo

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Baptisia Is An Unpretentious Prairie Symbol. Care, Cultivation, Reproduction. Photo
Baptisia Is An Unpretentious Prairie Symbol. Care, Cultivation, Reproduction. Photo

Video: Baptisia Is An Unpretentious Prairie Symbol. Care, Cultivation, Reproduction. Photo

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The incredible, wild beauty of the baptisias seems to bring a particle of the American prairies to the gardens. Despite the fact that this plant is found on other continents, it is always perceived as endemic to North America. Baptisia is a relative of acacia and mimosa, the same hardy and persistent perennial, but much less valued than its congeners. A beautiful bloom of weightless lace candles and dense cushions of greenery, as if pressed to the soil, are her main trump cards. And unpretentiousness is just a nice bonus.

Baptisia
Baptisia

The underestimated beauty of a gigantic beauty

Baptisia is one of the most hardy perennials that can decorate the garden for many decades. Reaching a height of at least 60 cm, this beauty most often produces candles of inflorescences up to 1.5-2 m, and by this parameter is able to compete with any classic tall plant from loosestrife to ivan tea. Moreover, the height of baptisia directly depends on the soil in which they grow and what kind of lighting they receive. Gray shoots with dense, tripartite leaves of a bluish-gray hue, reaching 8 cm in length, form a very picturesque mass with a beautiful texture. The attractive foliage (and most importantly, the density of the turf) makes the baptisia look good all season, but it is especially effective during flowering, when the cushions of greenery are covered with a veil of gentle flowering.

Baptisias are often blamed for not very attractive blooms. But it simply cannot be called long-lasting, while it is hard to argue with the beauty of airy lace. Unusual flowers with a diameter of 3 cm and more are collected in airy, loose, very elegant clusters of inflorescences. The inflorescences themselves are slightly reminiscent of lupins, but more weightless in appearance, lacy and rare. In length, they reach 30 cm. Flowering lasts only 2-3 weeks, its timing varies depending on the weather and in a favorable climate the period can be extended. The traditional term is June, but during very cold springs in regions with severe winters, baptisia may be late and bloom in July.

Southern Baptisia (Baptisia australis)
Southern Baptisia (Baptisia australis)

The color range of baptisia ranges from crisp white to off-white, delicate and more intense, but still natural shades of blue and yellow spectrum.

Using baptisia in garden decoration

Baptisia is most often used in the design of rockeries and alpine slides. Its high drought resistance, dense greenery and large size, natural beauty ideally emphasize the touching flowering of other crops for the rock garden, and the bluish bloom on the leaves interestingly echoes the stone rocks. Baptisia can serve as a visual peak of landscaping, create the most massive accents, serve as the basis, background of compositions.

But don't restrict its use in landscape design. The unpretentious and hardy baptisia will find a place in a flower garden as a background culture or textural partner, in mixborders in the middle and background, and in classic beddings. It is very good when planting on narrow flower beds, in ribbons and residual soil strips near fences and buildings.

Baptisia looks great as a soloist. Its bushes are so dense, neat, almost perfect in shape that even single plants look very impressive.

It is a landscape plant that goes well with most classic landscape perennials. The beauty of baptisia is emphasized most advantageously by bells, monarda, anaphalis, coreopsis.

Baptisia
Baptisia

Baptisia is one of the best honey plants. It is often used in folk medicine as an antiseptic.

Conditions Needed for Baptisia

Baptisias are used to growing in open, sunny areas. And the brighter illumination they receive, the more beautiful and longer they bloom, produce denser and more beautiful foliage. This perennial will not die even in shading, but it reaches its greatest decorative effect in the bright sun.

It is easy to pick up the soil. Baptisia need dry, well-drained soil, loose and even loose in structure. The higher the fertility, the better, but in general the plant is not very clearly dependent on the nutritional value of the soil. Baptisia can even be settled on clay soil, provided that drainage is laid, but it feels best in the loose soil of rockeries and rock gardens, loose sandy loam and even sandy soil.

Planting baptisia

Soil conditions can be improved before planting by adding fresh organic fertilizers. Laying compost and manure prior to planting will ensure a lush bloom for years to come. But the main thing is to dig up the soil well before planting baptisia, because it does not like poor water permeability.

Baptisia bracts (Baptisia bracteata)
Baptisia bracts (Baptisia bracteata)

Baptisia is placed at a distance of about 50-60 cm from other crops, because over time the bush increases in diameter, but does not lose its shape beauty and does not spread chaotically. The planting pits are the simplest in terms of the volume of the rhizome. On dense and clayey soils, it is better to lay drainage at the bottom. After planting, all baptisias are provided with at least some maintenance watering.

Features of baptisia care

This culture really needs minimal maintenance. Baptisias in general do not need watering, feeding, or even frequent pruning. If baptisia is planted in extremely depleted soils, then in adulthood it may experience a deterioration in flowering. In this case, at the beginning of the next season, in early spring, it is better to feed the plant with organic fertilizers, using them as mulch or embedding in the soil. If there is extreme heat during flowering, then to prolong it, it is better to carry out at least one watering.

In fact, all care for baptisia comes down to formation at a young age: regulating pruning is carried out on the plant in early spring, which sets the shape of the bush and the nature of growth. Adult baptisia do not need formation, they themselves create dense, thick and squat curtains, more like pillows.

Baptisia southern
Baptisia southern

Baptisia does not need protection for the winter and grows well even without the slightest mulching in the middle lane

This plant is also completely resistant to pests and diseases.

Reproduction of baptisia

To obtain a new generation of baptisia, it is best to use vegetative methods - separation or separation of basal shoots. But you can grow this perennial from seeds (however, the achievement of decorativeness of the bushes will have to wait for several years).

Baptisia seeds are sown immediately at the site of cultivation or on seedling beds only before winter. They need to be buried approximately 3 cm, and it is advisable to mulch the crops from above with leaves or peat, raking them off in early spring. Thinning is carried out as young baptisias grow.

Baptisia
Baptisia

It is possible to divide the bushes of adult baptisias both in spring and immediately after flowering. To adapt parts of the bush, you need to provide maintenance watering after 2-3 days for several weeks or until growth resumes.

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