Table of contents:
- Nikandra and her multifaceted talents
- Conditions required by Nikandra
- Landing nikandra
- Taking care of Nikandra
- Pest and disease control
- Reproduction of Nikandra
Video: A Modest And Undemanding One-year-old Nikandra. Planting, Growing, Care. Photo
2023 Author: Ava Durham | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 07:13
Nikandra is an annual who, despite his invaluable medicinal and decorative characteristics, remains a rare guest in our gardens today. Undemanding to care, hardy, unassuming, large, this Peruvian beauty conquers with her physalis-like fruits, beautiful light lilac flowers, and large leaves. Decorative and blooming relentlessly, Nikandra is good at cutting and on flower beds, as a soloist and in mixed ensembles. She has so many talents that one can consider the plant as a candidate for the title of one of the most versatile annuals.
Nikandra and her multifaceted talents
An ornamental annual, a wonderful dried flower, a medicinal plant - this is not the end of Nikandra's talents. This is a unique and modest plant at first glance, as soon as it appears in the garden, it immediately attracts attention. After all, the absence of extravagant catchiness and flashy details is not always a negative trait. Nikandra is one of those cultures in which beauty is not revealed immediately.
There are two types of plants in the genus Nikandra, but only one summer plant is grown as a cultural one - nikandra physalis(nicandra physalodes). The name of this amazing plant directly indicates the shape of the fruit. Powerful, strong, voluminous physalis-like nicandra is first of all striking in size. This summer house reaches a height of about 1 meter (and grows up to 1.5 m in fertile soil) and is rightfully considered a tall plant capable of creating powerful clumps. Among the individual forms of nicandra, one can find undersized, stocky varieties with a height of about 30 cm (minim form). In width, nicandra does not grow as actively as in height, limiting itself to a maximum of 80 cm in diameter for tall bushes. The leaves are large, lobed, showy, on rather long petioles, with a large-toothed margin. Thanks to its maxi-sized foliage, Nikandra looks like a real giant.
Nicandra flowers are limited in diameter to 3 cm. Light lilac, with a cold blue tone, they seem very unusual. Outwardly, they resemble Chinese lanterns, which seem to be specially suspended from the branches of bushes. And the white throat inside the corolla makes the plant even more elegant. After flowering, large fruits are tied with a filmy lantern bedspread, which adorn the plant no less than flowers.
Nikandra bloom continues until the first frost, splitting into several waves. After the flowering of the main shoots, fruits begin to form on them, but the bush is actively releasing lateral shoots and the young branches seem to pick up the baton from the main shoots.
In addition to the basic forms, there are also decorative varieties of nicandra:
- nikandra physalis-shaped rubra with darker leaves and purple, reddish petioles;
- the variety "Black Pod" is distinguished by a more rounded, spherical-bubble-like shape of bell flowers and a very dark, inky color.
In ornamental gardening, Nikandra is used:
- for large single accents and lawn revitalization;
- to create background landings;
- for filling voids in the middle and back panels of flower beds and beds;
- to create lush ensembles along walls and fences;
- to emphasize architectural elements - at the porch, passages, stairs, railings, terraces, arbors;
- as a volumetric filler of ensembles, a temporary masker;
- as a cut crop for live and dry bouquets (branches with fruits must be cut off before frost).
Conditions required by Nikandra
Nikandra can be safely ranked among the summer people who can live in almost any conditions. The plant reaches its greatest decorativeness in sunny areas, but is not too afraid of light shading. The worse the lighting, the less abundantly the summer will bloom, while the greenery practically does not change. But Nikandra is not afraid of drafts.
Nikandra is also undemanding to soils. They should be lightweight, well drained and nutritious. On depleted soil, the plant will not be able to demonstrate its best qualities, therefore it is better either to adjust the characteristics of the soil when planting, or to intensify care and provide for additional feeding that will allow the nicandra to develop normally.
Preplant soil improvement is carried out only on poor soil or in the absence of good water permeability. Dig up the soil deeply, 2 times. The introduction of organic matter, for example, compost, or the introduction of organic matter and full mineral fertilizers "works" well.
When planting seedlings, it is better to handle the rhizome very carefully: the better you keep the earthy ball, the faster the Nikandra will adapt and bloom. After planting, Nikandras need several maintenance watering.
This is a fairly large annual, but not afraid of dense landings. Nicandra bushes are planted at a distance of 30-40 cm between plants, because these beauties stretch upward, and do not grow in breadth.
Taking care of Nikandra
This plant, originally from Peru, tolerates droughts well and is rightfully ranked among drought-resistant crops. Frequent, and even more so systemic, watering is not necessary for Nikandra, it is enough just to support the flowering with watering on very hot days (to compensate for extreme temperatures). Nikandra prefers deep, but very rare procedures.
The plant will need fertilizing only on poor soils. For nicandras, the soil for which was not improved during planting, during the whole season, fertilizer should be regularly applied with water for irrigation. Fortunately, this summer plant feels great both when feeding with full mineral fertilizers, and when using organic matter (for example, mullein solution). The recommended frequency of fertilizing is every month from the moment of planting in the soil.
After Nikandra suffers from the first frosts, you should not expect the bushes to recover. Dig them up immediately and simply throw them off the site, or better destroy them. The sooner you do this, the better: large nicandras can become a refuge for pests and diseases, which then infect the soil and neighboring crops.
Pest and disease control
Nikandra can boast of an enviable resilience and in garden culture almost never gets sick, and even more so does not suffer from pests. But there is one "but": after the plant dies, wilted large clumps in the fall can turn into a real incubator for garden insects and fungi.
Reproduction of Nikandra
Growing through seedlings is rightfully considered the optimal way to reproduce this summer. A sufficiently long growing season does not allow sowing seeds directly into the soil. Therefore, it is better to sow in mid-April in a nutritious, light, moist substrate in medium-sized containers. Nicandra seeds are buried 1 cm, germinate only under glass or foil. As they grow up, strengthen the shoots and the appearance of the third true leaf, nicandras can dive into separate containers. Seedlings require long-term hardening before planting in the soil. It is not carried out in greenhouses, but by taking out the seedlings for the day to fresh air, gradually increasing the time spent in the garden. Only after the threat of age-related frosts disappears, the nikandra can be transferred to a permanent place. On poor soil, it is better to immediately improve the soil.
Despite the low frost resistance and fear of cold weather, Nikandra manages to set seeds even in regions with severe winters. Moreover: the plant actively produces self-seeding, which can be used as seedlings.
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