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Petunia is an abundantly flowering plant that is often found in flower beds and in apartments. A huge number of varieties and hybrids allows you to decorate any garden and give it a fabulous look. Every year, breeders develop new varieties and varieties, experimenting with colors and shapes.
Before starting to grow petunia, it is important to study the characteristics of this culture, to identify the optimal conditions for breeding, what problems may arise and how to avoid them.
Petunia became known at the end of the 18th century. Several species have been found in three Brazilian states (Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, Parana) on the banks of the Parana and Rio Negro rivers. It was soon discovered that the plant was easy to breed, as American breeders proved by developing many new varieties.
In the shortest possible time, petunia became famous in different parts of the world, its attractive appearance influenced the cultivation in many botanical gardens, as well as in palace parks and at the courts of wealthy nobles. Europeans have been cultivating petunia since 1820. In Russia, culture appeared with a slight delay, around 1830-1840.
Description and characteristics
Names: what is it called and why?
The very first name of the culture was "Nicotiana axillaris". It was given by the French natural scientist Jean Baptiste Lamarck. He described petunia in 1793 and confusion has arisen due to the similarity of petunia leaf plates to tobacco leaves. After a number of other species related to "Nicotiana axillaris" were discovered, all these plants were separated into a separate genus, renaming them Petunia. The word is translated from Brazilian as "tobacco", in Russian they do not use translation.
|Spread||South America, Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, North America|
Petunia is a perennial herbaceous or semi-shrub plant. Stems densely branched and creeping or pubescent, erect. Leaves of various shapes and sizes, sessile and alternate. Flowers are solitary, without inflorescences, small and large (from 2 to 12 cm in diameter), simple or double... They are located in a double perianth, consisting of a cup with five pubescent sepals and a corolla with five petals, the shape of which is either regular or stellate.
The color of the flowers depends on the variety: white, beige, pink, red, lilac, cherry, violet, raspberry, lavender ... The corolla resembles a funnel. Anthers are paired, elongated. Flowering lasts all summer, begins in May-June and ends in September. The fruit is formed in the form of a bivalve box, which cracks at the end of ripening. Inside there are small dark seeds in huge numbers (up to 10 thousand). Their germination capacity is maintained for 2-3 years when stored in a dark, cool place.
Petunia grows rapidly. The height of the bush is on average from 30 to 60 cm, lateral shoots can reach 1.5 meters (in ampel and cascade species). Most varieties quickly recover from damage and build up their initial mass in a month.
The culture has a fibrous rhizome, consisting of many whitish roots. They quickly grow throughout the container, but this does not interfere with planting the plant in flowerpots and pots. The transplanting process is not a hassle, the root system takes the form of a container and is removed in one lump.
Petunia requires careful maintenance, so it will be difficult for beginners to grow this plant. The flower requires regular pruning and pinching, and many varieties propagate exclusively by cuttings.
How long does it live?
Under natural conditions and at home breeding, petunia is a perennial plant that lives for 15-20 years. but in Russia, gardeners grow it as an annual, due to the fact that petunia does not tolerate frost and does not survive until spring.
Signs and superstitions
There are many conflicting signs associated with petunia. A flower bouquet that contains petunias is considered a manifestation of anger and irritation. But a flower in a pot, presented to a couple, helps to settle disagreements and omissions between partners or spouses.
Growing this flower on a windowsill, balcony or in the garden strengthens the owner's connection with the elements and helps to find inner harmony. Petunia inspires new discoveries and travels, gives strength to the implementation of business and creative projects. A bright flower attracts good luck and helps to deal with accumulated cases.
Scarlet, purple and pink petunias are considered the patrons of love.... A girl who has such beauties in her house or garden will soon meet her betrothed and get married.
However, all the positive properties of petunia turn into their opposite if the flower lacks care and attention. Sick petunia draws happiness and good luck out of the house, shedding leaves reflect future financial losses. Previously, petunia could be presented with malicious intent, laying wishes for misfortune and failure as a gift. In this case, the flower was transplanted into a new pot and kept at the front door for several days so that anger and negativity left the house and did not bring grief to its owners.
Useful properties and application
Scientists point to the beneficial effects of petunia scent on the human nervous system. It soothes, improves the emotional state, increases efficiency and relieves headaches. Regular contact with this flower improves the work of the cardiovascular system and respiratory system. And bright shades of flowers are an excellent color therapy, causing positive emotions and pacification.
Types and classification
It is very difficult to compose an unambiguous and clearly built classification of petunias. But a simplified systematization option will come to the aid of an inexperienced florist. It looks like this:
- By the appearance of the bush:
- By the nature of flowering and the size of the buds:
- By the structure of the buds:
This classification allows the plant to be attributed to several species groups at once.
The variety is distinguished by small lemon-colored flowers against a background of emerald foliage. Due to its compact size, it goes well with other ampel varieties - the growth of Table Yellow rarely exceeds 25-30 cm and is suitable for growing in hanging pots or open ground. Poorly tolerates a lack of light, needs good lighting.
The variety belongs to hybrid F1 and is famous for its hardiness and long flowering period. Avalanche is often used to decorate gazebos and loggias. Light green leaves contrast with medium-sized scarlet flowers with a dark core.
Corduroy got its name from the velvety surface of the leaf plate and the beautiful purple shade of small buds on long inflorescences. Flowering occurs late, so growth accelerators and the pinching method are often used. The bright colors of the flowers intrigue pollinating insects, which is why corduroy is often planted in gardens to attract them.
The stems of the variety reach up to 1.5 m in length. However, they are strong enough to withstand strong winds. The leaves have a waxy coating that protects the plant from rain and drought, regulating moisture loss. The color scheme is varied - white, pink, purple, violet, coral, lavender and blue.
In length, the stems of Davydovka grow up to 50-70 cm, small bright flowers (pink, red, purple) are formed on them, however, the plant is very whimsical to care for, therefore this variety is grown exclusively at home.
The variety is characterized by light green small leaves and bright double-colored flowers. Their perimeter is painted in a light beige shade, and the middle is maroon. It responds well to vegetative reproduction; during the season, the planting material can be increased several times, prolonging the flowering of petunia until the first frost.
Easy wave red
Deep red inflorescences densely cover long, up to 1 m, stems. The foliage is slightly darker than other varieties. Looks spectacular in hanging pots and tall flowerpots, forming a scarlet obloco.
A rare variety that differs from the rest by its early dense flowering. The stems are long, an average of 80-100 cm. The variety tolerates adverse weather conditions well, suitable for growing in hanging boxes and pots. At the end of ripening, the seed pods are empty, so they propagate such petunia by cuttings. It grows quickly and densely, no need to trim or pinch.
Sweetunia suzie storm
Popular Dutch variety. Sprawling, profusely blooming. The crown is domed, densely covered with bright pink flowers, shaped like a funnel. If faded areas are removed in a timely manner, then flowering will persist until frost. The variety loves bright lighting, but tolerates slight shading.
Sweetunia subspecies, similar in appearance and care requirements. Flowers of medium size, bright fiery shade against the background of emerald leaves. The bush is of medium height, slightly raised above the pots, in which it is most often grown.
Partially ampelous variety. Flowering shoots are formed in the leaf axils, which are located in the center of the bush. Therefore, the plant is practically not bare. The variety tolerates hot weather well. Flowers of two shades - dark purple in the center, and slightly lighter at the edges.
Purple flowers with a dark center are located on meter-long stems. The variety needs protection from strong winds, and regular pinching is required. Often used to form a solid wardrobe trunk on a wall or railing.
Flowering begins in May and lasts until October. The stems grow up to 1 meter, they are densely covered with large flowers. Grown as an ampel and ground cover plant. Loves sunny areas, the bush is formed dense, without exposing the center.
One of the most hardy varieties, resistant to adverse weather conditions, diseases, pests and fragility. Like other varieties, Tidel Wave is a perennial, but is grown by gardeners as an annual. The bush grows to a height of 55 cm, the lateral shoots are three times larger.
Small cherry buds with delicate petals are densely strewn with stems. In the center, their height does not exceed 35-40 cm, but the lateral ones grow up to one meter. The variety needs bright lighting and protection from the wind.
The variety is characterized by abundant flowering on unevenly developed shoots (lateral ones grow up to 1 meter, central and straight ones - no more than 35 cm). Flowers are white, purple, lavender, purple. The buds are delicate, small in size. The variety looks good in hanging flowerpots, flowerpots and open flower beds.
Looks spectacular in flowerpots on a long thin leg, forming a lush bright green cloud with pink and crimson flowers.
The variety was named for the snow-white petals of delicate flowers up to 6 cm in diameter. Not afraid of heavy rain and wind. In case of damage, it quickly recovers, after a month the bush is again strewn with many buds.
The most excellent
Suitable for growing in a box or in a flower bed. It differs in weak branching, reaches a height of 40 cm.The diameter of the flower is no more than 3 cm.
Differs in abundant and lush flowering, the diameter of the flowers reaches 6 cm. Fortunia is capable of covering 1.5 sq. M. flower beds. The plant is characterized by good branching and resistance to unfavorable climates.
One of the largest petunias. The stems reach 1.5 m in length, they are abundantly strewn with large flowers of various colors. The shoots are flexible and strong, they are not afraid of rain and wind. Loves sunny areas with light sandy or loamy soil.
The stems of this species grow up to 1.2 m. The variety has a stable immunity to diseases and insects, is not afraid of showers and strong winds, and quickly recovers if damaged. The flowers are large, 5-6 cm in diameter, bright or pastel shades.
The compact bush does not need growth stimulants, it easily maintains the spherical shape of the crown. It tolerates spring frosts and summer heat well. The flowers are large, bright orange in color against the background of dark green foliage. The bush reaches a height of 20-25 cm.
Terry variety, petals are light blue, with a lilac tint. The leaves are small, light green. The compact size of the bush looks great in a pots, the plant looks like a small ball, grows quickly, and has a strong immune system.
It is a variety with deep purple flowers and corrugated petal edges. Forms large (90-140 cm) bushes, prone to strong growth. Plants are unpretentious and resistant to adverse weather conditions. Blooms from June to October.
Hybrid variety that grows up to 2 meters. Abundant flowering in regions with warm climates lasts 2-3 months. The flowers are large, up to 5-6 cm in diameter, rich in shades.
The bush is small, compact. Retains the shape of a ball even when grown for extended periods without pinching. Branches well, giving the plant a lush appearance. During the flowering period, foliage is not visible behind the abundance of orange flowers. The color of flowers in bright light becomes muted, similar in color to the pulp of a pumpkin or papaya. Not afraid of spring frosts.
Hybrid variety. A dense compact bush with simple green leaves, funnel-shaped flowers up to 10 cm in diameter, the edge of the flower is wavy, corrugated. The color of the buds is from white to dark cherry, the color is bright, cold shades. The plant has a sturdy stem 25 to 40 cm high.
Bushes with long (more than 70 cm) drooping shoots. The stems are prone to rapid growth: in a short period (1.5–2 months), a lush flowering bush grows from the cuttings. The flowers are medium in size, 5–6 cm in diameter.
This series features the craziest colors. For example, Black Mamba with black velvet flowers, or Cherry cheesecake, which is a variety with snow-white flowers with a red stripe in the center. Plants are distinguished by continuous branching and the formation of numerous shoots with buds, behind which no greenery is visible.
Svitunia is not afraid of drought and the scorching sun. It is characterized by deep tones of flowers with velvet petals. Each variety has its own color with a transition in different tones. For example, Susie Storm has carmine red flowers with a wide longitudinal band of burgundy black on each petal. Johnny flame is a darker variety with crimson-purple petals with a smooth transition to black in the center of the petal. Compact and blooming profusely.
Another hybrid variety of petunias. Flowers are twice as large, corrugated, with a pronounced aroma. They are distinguished by abundant flowering, behind which greenery is practically invisible. Presented in a huge variety of shades.
Snow-white grade frillithunium "Snowflake F1"
Large snow-white flowers with a double edge look very delicate and bright.
Bright pink, the most popular variety "Butterfly F1"
Large pink flowers in rich tone with a ruffled edge are very similar to the wings of butterflies.
Dark pink variety "Pink Crinoline F1"
Bright pink flower petals stand out effectively against the background of lush greenery.
Dark red "Crinoline red F1"
Scarlet flowers resemble the lush crinoline skirts of court ladies.
A variety that represents lush flowers of a ruby-purple hue that will not leave indifferent any gardener. The dark core of the bud with long pistils looks especially impressive.
Unique red wine variety "Burgundy F1"
Wavy flowers of a rich wine tone, medium simple leaf plates.
Rich purple, velvety grade "Carnival F1"
Purple large flowers with a velvety surface and velvety green leaves of an emerald hue.
Deep purple-violet "F1 Brazilian Carnival"
Incredibly elegant mauve flowers with an openwork frill resemble the magnificent costumes of girls participating in the famous carnival.
Large-flowered petunias (Grandiflora)
The large-flowered petunia has a fairly well-developed stem, reaching 35–40 cm in height. It can be upright and spread over the surface of the soil. In order of sequence, shoots with leaves of a rich green color are concentrated on it. Flowers ovary occurs on short pedicels. They grow up to 5-6 cm in diameter and are common (simple) or double (fluffy).
Petunia Marco Polo is one of the large-flowered representatives of the cascading petunias. The size is due to the absence of female flowers, only male flowers on the shoots that do not set seeds. Can be attributed to universal groups that adapt to unfavorable growing conditions: drought, early frosts, prolonged rains.
Complimentunia is an exclusive hybrid that is distinguished by large flowers with a diameter of 14 cm and super-abundant flowering. Its graceful bushes, densely dotted with flowers, grow very quickly. Due to the presence of the gene for male sterility, complimentunia does not set seeds, directing all its energy to the formation of new flowers. The form of plants is bushy, the height of the bush is 20-25 cm, the width is 40-50 cm.
This plant is a small, neat bushes 40-70 cm high, oval-shaped leaves, whole, approximately 5-12 cm long, arranged alternately, rich green color. Flowers are 8-10 cm in diameter, terry, sometimes with fringes along the edge, of various colors.
Bushes of low-growing petunia with a height of 15 to 30 cm, compact size. Most often with small flowers, 3-5 cm in diameter.
Early undersized large-flowered petunia. Plants are compact, up to 20 cm high, with dense branching from the base. The flowers are funnel-shaped, large - up to 7 cm, with a wavy scalloped edge. Blooms profusely and for a long time all summer, until frost. They are used in flower beds for bright groups, on borders, ridges, in hanging baskets.
Grows up to 40 cm, dense branching, resistant to wind and rain. The flowers are large, up to 12 cm, of various colors. Blooms from May to October, before the onset of the first frost.
Available in blues, lilacs, blues and purples. Flowers are large, blooms profusely, from May to September. The bush is compact, practically does not grow.
Representative of the Dreams series with delicate large flowers of a rich wine shade.
Petunia Alladin forms compact, low (up to 40 cm) bushes during the growth period. The flowers are specific, large enough for petunias (about 13, even up to 15 cm in diameter), of a characteristic shape: the edges of the opened buds are slightly bent to the sides, forming a corrugated rim.
This group is distinguished by small, from 3 to 7 cm, flowers of various colors. Many of them are bred at home. Despite the small flowering, there are many buds on the bush, along the entire length of the stems.
It is a compact multiflora variety with red, crimson, salmon and pink flowers. Purple, white, blue and cream hybrids are less common. They bloom early, are picky and are better suited for gardens. The diameter of the flowers is about 5 cm, but there are many of them and they are unpretentious.
The flowers of this species are large, white or pink with stripes. Sometimes the flowers are lilac. An interesting feature of this variety is that the stripes are either white on pink or pink on white.
An amazing feature of Plum Crystal petunia is its ability to change the color of the petals. Gradually, they fade from lilac to almost whitish. The flowers are decorated with dark and expressive burgundy-purple veins.
A multi-flowered petunia with a variety of pinks, reds, lilacs and purples. The bush is compact, up to 40 cm in height.
Hardy, unassuming variety. Bushes 25-38 cm high, flowers are large, up to 10 cm. Branching is not dense.
Large and expressive corrugated flowers are the main feature of this small category of grandiflora petunias. Bushes up to 25 cm will be an ideal decoration for terraces, gazebos and open balconies. A rich crimson red or violet-blue hue is emphasized by the white border.
Among the varieties there are double specimens, but usually these are ordinary flowers of a huge size - up to 16 cm in diameter. There are also samples with a diameter of up to 20 cm. The color range of the Triumph variety is diverse, from pale pink to juicy burgundy. The varieties are characterized by weak branching, but the bushes are powerful and reach a length of 50 cm. Sometimes they even require a support to hold the flowers.
Terry variety with various shades, often sold as a mix. Compact bushes up to 35 cm high do not grow much and retain their original shape.
Shrub annual variety of petunias. The plant is not afraid of heat, rain or wind. Plant growth is fast. Early and abundant flowering. The huge number of flowers hides the long shoots of the plant. The height of the color is about 30 cm.
Against the background of light green leaves, large flowers of a rich blue hue bloom quite early. Despite the small height of the bush itself, it is literally strewn with flowers, which makes it especially attractive.
A variety of terry large-flowered petunias. The bushes are about 35 cm high and 40 cm wide. The Ultra variety is recommended to be planted in large flower beds. The flowers are wide open, with a double edge. Colors can range from deep pink to shrimp. The plant is resistant to strong winds and is sold as a mixture. The seeds grow bright double flowers of purple, pink, white and crimson color. A distinctive feature of Fantasy is a short growing period, but long and abundant flowering.
This hybrid is most often sold as a mixture. A distinctive feature of Fantasy is a short growing period, but long and abundant flowering.
Which varieties are home, which are garden ones?
Annual and perennial varieties?
Use in landscape design
Petunia is actively used in landscape design. It looks spectacular in wide flowerpots, hanging boxes and pots, and is often used to decorate gazebos, terraces and arches. Petunias are placed on the tops of alpine hills, in particular, cascading varieties. Tornado and Typhoon are used to decorate hedges, their stems grow rapidly and entangle the branches of the bush. The same varieties are used as living carpet.
Many compact varieties are grown at home. Petunia is demanding on watering, lighting and humidity, therefore, for its comfortable living, it is necessary to monitor these indicators.
Location and lighting
Petunia belongs to the plants of the summer flowering period, so it is important to monitor the duration of daylight hours - it should be 12-14 hours. The flower is not afraid of the sun's rays, but it will also tolerate a little shading without difficulty. When breeding petunias indoors, choose a well-lit balcony or loggia, a southern or western window sill. In the garden, choose a sunny area with protection from wind or rain.
In the spring-summer period, temperature indicators are maintained within + 18 ... + 27 degrees. In autumn and winter, a decrease of less than +10 degrees is not allowed, optimally - + 12 ... + 16. If necessary, additional heating devices are connected, but keep them at a distance from the flowers.
How to care during the rest period?
The peculiarities of caring for a culture during a dormant period include:
- additional lighting - daylight hours should last at least 12 hours, most often special lamps are turned on at nightfall and left until dawn;
- reduction of air dryness - dry air provokes the appearance of powdery mildew or spider mites, the flower dries up and sheds foliage, therefore, air humidifiers or a glass of water are installed next to the pot, once a week the petunia is sprayed;
- reduction of watering - in cold weather, petunia is watered every 7-10 days, after the topsoil has dried.
Water the petunia with rain or soft water at room temperature that has been settled for 2-3 days. Watering is carried out at the root or through a pan, avoiding moisture on the leaves and flowers. It is necessary to moisten the soil as the topsoil dries out, in the summer, once a day or every other day, in other seasons - 1-2 times a week.
IMPORTANT! Petunias are watered after sunset. This applies to both garden dwellers and indoor ones. Otherwise, sunburn will form on the leaves and stem.
Stagnation of moisture at the roots should not be allowed, otherwise fungal diseases like a black leg will appear. Therefore, the excess water accumulated in the pan is drained 15-20 minutes after watering.
Petunias do not tolerate dry air poorly, humidity indicators should be kept within 60-70%. In winter, when the heating system is working, you can put a bowl of water or wet moss next to the pot.
Soil: purchased and made by yourself
The soil for growing petunias can be prepared independently according to the following recipe:
- one piece of turf;
- two pieces of leafy land;
- one part of peat;
- one part of humus.
Such a composition has good nutritional value, and the plant will not be deficient in nutrients. Do not forget to put perlite, expanded clay or any other drainage that protects against moisture stagnation on the bottom of the pot.
Of the ready-made formulations, the most popular are:
- Soil for petunias "Ambulance" 5 liters for 105 rubles;
- Soil "Lucky" Peter Peat 20 liters for 159 rubles;
- Terra Vita soil "Living Earth" 50 l for 359 rubles;
- Soil COMPO SANA universal 10 l for 493 rubles.
Both purchased and homemade soil before planting, it is necessary to disinfect in order to exclude the ingress of spores of fungi or insect larvae. For this:
- The soil is calcined in the oven at 120-140 degrees for 20 minutes;
- The mixture is spilled with boiling water and covered with a bag. After cooling down, the procedure is repeated.
- A small amount of wood ash is added to the soil.
- Spill with a weak solution of potassium permanganate and leave to dry.
Perlite, expanded clay, coconut substrate, brick chips or crushed clay shards are used as drainage.
Gardeners prefer to choose a pot made of breathable materials such as clay, ceramic or wood. The size should be slightly larger than the root system so that the plant has a place to develop and the roots do not experience discomfort. It is better to give preference to light shades, dark containers will heat up and retain heat, which will negatively affect the growth of petunias.
Ampel and cascade species are grown in suspended structures, pots or boxes. This will allow the stems of the crop to feel free and grow. It is imperative to have drainage holes to drain excess moisture.
IMPORTANT! When choosing a pot, be guided by the variety. Terry need containers of 3 liters, ordinary - up to 5 liters.
Top dressing, fertilizers
Organic matter is introduced when preparing the soil for planting, this volume is enough for the plant for a year. Therefore, mineral compositions are used from fertilizers for petunias. Before flowering, petunia needs nitrogen fertilization to build up green mass, after the flowers appear, fertilizers are applied containing phosphorus and potassium. Use ready-made mineral formulations for petunias or indoor flowering plants. Petunia responds well to feeding with wood ash.
Pruning is carried out as needed, removing old buds, diseased and damaged leaves, dry stems. Cut the plant with scissors treated with boiling water or potassium permanganate to protect the flower from infection with fungal diseases.
The pinching method allows you to form a bush and has a beneficial effect on future flowering. They pinch not only the central, main stem, but also all the neighboring ones. This allows you to get two new ones from one shoot. Pinching is carried out when the length of the shoot reaches 10-15 cm. The upper point of growth (2-3 upper leaves) is cut off with scissors, the scissors are treated with boiling water or a weak solution of manganese before this, so as not to provoke the development of fungal diseases.
Spraying is carried out in the summer season, in the early morning or late evening. Water is used for irrigation. The procedure is carried out no more than 1 time per week.
Care in the autumn, winter time
The rest period occurs in autumn and winter, care at this time is carried out according to the scheme specified in the corresponding paragraph.
First care after purchase
Having bought an adult potted plant, you need to transplant it into a new pot. For this, the container is filled with drainage and soil, the plant is removed from the old container and transferred to a new place. The soil is moistened and the pot is placed away from other plants for 1-2 weeks to prevent the spread of possible diseases or pests.
It is not difficult to achieve flowering in petunias if you observe the duration of daylight hours. With sufficient light, the first flowers appear in early May. To stimulate the plant, you need to form bushes by pinching. This is done not only with the main stem, but also with all the others - two shoots are formed at the place of the pinching.
Pinching is carried out immediately after the length of the stem reaches 10-15 cm. Along the way, they monitor the buds, removing those that have faded. Otherwise, a box with seeds will begin to form in their place, the cultivation of which takes a lot of effort and energy.
Young plants are transplanted several times a year as they grow. Adult petunias are transplanted once a year.
When is it necessary, desirable and undesirable?
A transplant is carried out if the plant has grown and the root system is cramped. Petunia should not be transplanted during the flowering period, it is better to do this in spring (March-April) or autumn, after dropping the last buds.
Requirement for soil and pot
The transplant container is chosen larger than the previous one so that the petunia continues to grow and does not postpone flowering. The soil is used purchased or prepared independently (the composition was indicated above). Before transplanting, the soil must be etched with boiling water in order to destroy the spores of fungi and insect larvae.
- Prepare a new container that is larger than the old one.
- Fill the pot 1/3 full with drainage and fill the rest with the selected soil, making a small indentation in it.
- Remove the petunia from the pot. If the plant is healthy, the old soil can be left on the roots.
- Place the flower in the groove and cover the roots with soil, crushing it lightly.
- Moisten the soil, preferably using a pallet.
- Transfer the pot to a well-lit windowsill.
Petunia seedlings are transferred to open ground in late April or early May, when the night temperature does not drop below +10 degrees. A sunny place without strong darkening is chosen. Soils - loamy or sandy loam, slightly acidic or with neutral acidity. Digging up the soil with the addition of lime will help reduce acidity.
If it is possible to create a separate flower bed with suitable soil, then use 2 parts of deciduous land + 2 parts of sod land + 1 part of peat + 1 part of coarse sand.
Features of outdoor care
Watering is carried out as the top layer of the soil dries up, by drip. Ideally, use rainwater. The tap must be free of chlorine. As in the case of indoor petunias, mineral formulations are used as fertilizers. The first top dressing is carried out 1.5-2 weeks after transplanting, making nitrogen top dressing. When the petunia is in bloom, it should be fed with phosphorus and potassium to maintain the vigor required for bud formation.
Remove faded buds to prolong flowering... This will prevent the plant from forming bolls and will stimulate the ovary of new flowers.
Spraying the bushes with 1% Bordeaux liquid or Fitosporin will help protect petunia from fungi and pests. You can plant marigolds, oregano or mustard nearby. These plants scare away insects with their aroma.
For the winter, petunias can be dug up, transplanted into a pot and grown at home.
Reproduction: step by step instructions
Petunia is propagated in two ways: by seeds and cuttings.
- Prepare a suitable container: seedling boxes or plastic cups 100-200 ml.
- Fill containers with potting soil for petunias or flowering houseplants.
- The seeds are poured onto the soil, sprayed with water from a spray bottle and covered with glass.
- The containers are placed in a warm (+ 20 ... + 24 degrees) bright place. The glass is removed every day for 15-30 minutes for airing.
- After 7-10 days, after the first shoots appear, the glass is removed completely, the seedlings are transferred to a cooler place for hardening.
- Seedlings dive after the formation of 2-3 leaves. The pick is carried out in separate larger containers or in peat pellets, which are later transferred to a permanent pot.
The propagation of a culture by cuttings has a number of advantages:
- the root system of the plant develops faster;
- the genotype of the mother plant of wasps is preserved with all its characteristics;
- seedlings take root better during transplantation, have strong immunity and resistance to pests;
- flowering occurs 2-3 weeks earlier, compared to plants grown from seeds;
- allows you not to spend money on the purchase of seeds or seedlings.
To carry out cuttings, you must:
- Cut off healthy lateral or apical shoots 4 cm long with two nodules. Lateral cut obliquely, apical exactly. The lower leaves are removed.
- A metal or plastic opaque container is filled with soft water that has been settled for 24 hours.
- The growth-stimulating Kornevin is added to the water and one tablet of activated carbon is diluted.
- The cuttings are placed in a container and left in a well-lit place, out of direct sunlight.
- When the liquid evaporates, it is not replaced, but fresh is simply added.
- The air temperature during grafting should not be lower than +20 degrees.
- The first roots appear after a week.
- The cuttings are transferred to the soil for further rooting. Soil composition: 1 part peat, 1 part sand, 2 parts turf.
- After 2-3 weeks, the seedlings can be hardened by exposing them to their future habitat (garden, balcony). Then the cuttings are transplanted into a permanent pot or flower bed.
Growing seedlings, picking
Garden varieties of petunias, before planting in the ground, prefer to grow in the form of seedlings. This can be done using peat tablets or suitable containers. Seeds are sown in late February and early March.
Suitable soil should be light and nutritious (1 part peat, 1 part sand, 1 part humus). Boxes or cups are filled with them, seeds are sown on top. Seedlings are grown according to the seed propagation principle described above.
In peat tablets
The seeds are germinated in peat tablets immediately, or small shoots are dived after the formation of several large leaves. For this:
- Peat tablets are placed in a plastic box with high walls and filled with warm water (+40 degrees). The tablets are allowed to swell for 15-20 minutes.
- Using tweezers, 1-3 seeds are placed in the center of the tablet.
- The tablets are moistened again.
- The box with pills is covered with foil, creating a greenhouse effect.
- After the sprouts appear, the film is removed (after 7-10 days).
- The pick is carried out after 2-3 weeks, transferring the pill to a permanent pot or flower pot.
Diseases and pests
The information below is relevant for both garden and home petunias.
They are dangerous because they develop quickly and spread easily among other plants.
Powdery mildew of petunia (lat.Erysiphaceae)
The disease develops due to thickening of the crown, an excess of nitrogenous fertilizers or stagnant moisture.
First, the fungus affects the upper part of the leaves, manifesting itself as a white bloom... Then the plaque goes down, affecting the entire surface of the leaf plate. Because of this, the process of photosynthesis is disrupted, the leaves curl and dry out, the plant ceases to receive enough nutrition and withers.
For treatment, the affected parts are removed and burned, the flower is sprayed with garlic infusion (30 g of garlic is poured with a liter of water per day). Or use an infusion of mustard (2 tablespoons are diluted in 10 liters of water and kept for a day). Of the finished products, Topaz, Bravo, Skor are used.
Gray rot (lat.Botrytis cinerea)
Gray rot enters through contaminated soil, attacking damaged root systems (for example, after transplanting) or aboveground parts. Often the cause is an excess of nitrogenous fertilizers or a lack of potassium and phosphorus. Light brown spots on the lower leaves and stem are the first sign of infection. Then a fluffy gray bloom forms, the leaves wither and fall off, the disease spreads throughout the plant and neighbors.
Fungal control measures are to adjust fertilizers, destruction of affected leaves and treatment of the plant with Trichodermin, Integral, Skor, Maxim, Ordan, Topaz until the symptoms disappear completely. In case of severe damage, the plant is thrown out in order to prevent infection of neighbors.
Late blight (Latin Phytophthora infestans)
Another name for the disease is brown rot. It develops due to oversaturation of the soil with moisture, heavy soil, lack of drainage. Dangerous signs - spots of a brown, purple or brown hue appear on the leaf plate. The leaves are covered with a mealy bloom. The bushes are treated with special antibacterial agents (copper sulfate, Bordeaux liquid, Ridomil Gold, Skor). For prophylaxis, flowers are sprayed 2 times with an interval of 2-3 weeks before flowering.
Brown spot of petunias (Latin Phyllosticta petuniae Sp.)
Develops due to lack of nutrition. Oval, rounded brown spots appear on stems and leaves. Of the peculiarities, the spots are covered with black dots and bordered by a dark stripe. Gradually, the spots dry out, the affected areas of the leaf spill out, holes are formed. The bush loses its decorative effect, and over time the entire aboveground part dries up. To overcome the disease, adjust the feeding schedule, using fertilizers with potassium and phosphorus, the affected parts are cut off, the flower and the soil are treated with Vectra and Strobi preparations.
The causative agent of the disease is the phytophage fungus Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. It is actively developing when irrigation rules are violated, there is no loosening of the soil and increased acidity of the soil.
Wet brown spots appear on the affected parts of the plant, on which a white bloom with dark dots forms. All aerial parts of the petunia turn pale, and the roots are covered with mucus. The affected parts of the flower die off, the plant dies.
At the first symptoms, the flower is sprayed with colloidal sulfur, copper sulfate or Bordeaux liquid... All neighboring healthy plants are treated with Maxim or Integral preparations for prophylaxis.
It develops from stagnation of moisture at the roots, quickly spreads among other plants. The lower part of the stem darkens sharply and becomes soft. Rot develops. The lower leaves turn yellow, coarse and fall off. The fungus rises higher on the stem, the plant dies.
At the first sign, it is necessary to adjust the watering. Use water at room temperature, avoid stagnation at the roots. Treat the flower with copper sulfate, 1% Bordeaux liquid and potassium permanganate (0.2 g per liter of water). Use Trichodermin, Fitosporin-M (according to the instructions), infusion of onion peels or marigolds (20 g per 1 liter).
Pests get on petunia from other plants, neighboring areas or through infected planting material. It is important to regularly inspect flowers for signs of insect infestation in order to respond in a timely manner to an attack.
White flies hide on the inside of the leaves. Whitefly leaves behind a white bloom, on which a sooty fungus develops. The moth larvae feed on the sap of the plant. Petunia turns yellow and fades.
Whitefly reproduces rapidly in high humidity conditions (over 65%). They fight insects with insecticides Aktara, Aktellik and Confidor, which are treated 2 times a week until the destruction of pests.
Aphids infect the leaves and stems of petunia; drops of sticky dew appear on these parts. Over time, a sooty fungus develops, new buds wither, the leaves become deformed and curled. In addition, aphids carry many viral diseases that lead to the death of the plant. Effective means of fighting aphids are drugs Aktara, Confidor, Decis and Fufanon... They are bred according to the instructions on the package, the plant is treated 2-3 times a week, until the warning signs disappear completely.
Signs of infestation: a colony of small insects appears on the inside of the leaves. Stems and leaves are covered with a whitish thin cobweb, light spots are formed on the leaf plates, gradually increasing in size. Leaves dry and crumble. The treatment is carried out by spraying dandelion infusion (25-30 g is poured with a liter of hot water and insisted for 2 hours) or using the preparations Neoron, Apollo, Demitan (according to the instructions, alternating means until the insects disappear completely).
It is a tiny dark brown insect. The body length is 1.5-2 mm. Leaf plates are struck from both sides, keeping in small groups. Dry light stripes appear on the leaves. The buds and flowers are deformed, the flower withers and gradually dies, as thrips feed on sap, clogging pores and restricting access to nutrients. Bioinsecticide Spintor-240 or Aktara and Confidor preparations help to fight insects. Processing is carried out 2-3 per week until the insects disappear.
Tiny brown larvae 2-3 mm long are dangerous to the plant. They gnaw passages in leaves and stems, feed on sap and lay eggs. Beige or whitish sinuous stripes appear on the flower. The leaves dry up, the petunia withers and withers.
To combat the pest, the damaged parts are removed, and the flower is treated with Damilin or Aktellik. The procedure is carried out every 3-5 days, at least 6 times. It is better to alternate preparations, as the larvae are resistant to insecticides and quickly develop immunity to chemicals.
The appearance of alarming symptoms indicates the need to adjust the care of the plant.
Petunia turns yellow
If the leaf plates of a flower turn yellow and dry, and there are no signs of disease or insects, this indicates a lack of watering or lighting. Water the plant more often and increase the length of daylight hours by connecting special lamps.
The lethargy of the petunia indicates a lack of lighting and a lack of nutrition. The plant needs to be exposed to the sun or use fluorescent lamps. Add mineral fertilizers to the soil: until abundant flowering, use nitrogen fertilization, during the flowering period, introduce fertilizers with phosphorus and potassium.
Where and how can you buy?
You can buy an adult flower at the flower market or in specialized stores. Many species are available for purchase in the form of seeds or cuttings, in this case they turn to online stores or to users of thematic forums. Dutch producers of planting material are highly valued and are contacted through special websites.
How to choose and what to look for?
When buying an adult plant, carefully inspect the stem and leaves for mechanical damage or the manifestation of fungal diseases. The leaf plates should be of an even green hue, without spots and stripes. The buds of a healthy flower are dense and strong, flowers of the correct shape (except for double species), with a delicate aroma.
By purchasing seeds or cuttings online, read the reviews of other buyers carefully... Pay attention to the expiration date printed on the packaging. Rooted cuttings of medium size, the root system is developed evenly, without visible deviations.
The variety of varieties of petunias allows you to collect a whole collection of this culture. The plant looks spectacular in a flower bed and pleases with its flowering all summer. Most varieties, with the exception of those that grow strongly, can be grown at home. Subject to the rules of care, the indoor beauty will also delight with bright buds and will not cause much trouble.