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The annual chrysanthemum is an unpretentious culture of European or African origin. Despite the relative simplicity of the flower arrangement, it has a spectacular appearance due to its bright colors and a variety of colors. It grows well in temperate climates and has a long flowering time.
Are there annual chrysanthemums
The home of the classic perennial chrysanthemum is northeastern China. Most of these plants, despite their spectacular appearance, are very demanding to care for and have complex agricultural techniques. Annual chrysanthemums are mainly representatives of certain types of decorative culture, which have a Mediterranean or North African origin.
In fact, there are three main types of these plants: keeled or tricolor chrysanthemums, field (sowing), coronal.
The first of the listed species contains the most beautiful and spectacular plants. As a rule, it was he who was used to breed most varieties of chrysanthemums. The height of these varieties ranges from 15 to 60 cm.
Field chrysanthemums are actually weeds that compete with cereals (especially wheat and corn). Mostly, these are plants of the lower tier.
Coronal species are also quite decorative, but not as diverse as tricolor ones. They have the highest growth, reaching up to 100 cm.
How to distinguish perennial chrysanthemums from annuals
These groups of plants actually differ in species, that is, they are different biological species. But gardeners are not very interested in the chromosome set of crops; for them, the difference in appearance and characteristics of cultivation is important.
Most perennial chrysanthemums have complex, lush inflorescences, with annuals predominantly similar to chamomile or asters. The flowering time of annual crops is longer, and the buds themselves bloom earlier.
The shape of the root system also differs: representatives of the Chinese species have a strong taproot, the inhabitants of the Mediterranean have a subsurface distributed root system.
Important! Annual chrysanthemums are less whimsical, more hardy and cold-resistant.
Annual Chrysanthemum Varieties
In terms of varietal diversity, annual chrysanthemums can only be compared with asters. The choice of existing varieties is wide enough, and even the most sophisticated connoisseurs of variegated shades will find among this culture what they like.
The variety German flag (Chrysanthemum German Flag) is a plant up to 50 cm high with a flower in the form of a chamomile. The diameter of the inflorescence is 7-8 cm. Its middle is dark, and the leaves have a gradient yellow-red color, outwardly resembling the flag of Germany.
One bush can have up to two to three dozen inflorescences of different ages
The leaves of the variety are sessile, oblong, often with jagged edges. Likes to grow on light soils with the addition of lime.
The large-flowered variety of the keeled chrysanthemum Dunetti (Chrysanthemum Carinatum Dunetti) has a height of 80 to 100 cm. The flowers are double, reaching a diameter of up to 15 cm. Even within the same variety, Dunetti's colors can be very diverse. On sale this variety is presented under the name "terry mixture".
It is believed that the color of the Dunetti variety depends on the acidity of the soil on which it is grown, as well as on the flowering time.
The leaves of the plant have a dark green tint, there is pubescence on them. In appearance and structural features of the bush (thick stem, taproot, etc.), Dunetti is very easy to confuse with perennial chrysanthemums, but this, unfortunately, is not the case.
Rainbow (Chrysanthemum Rainbow) is one of the most variegated varieties with the most shades. Their variety creates a rainbow effect, which is reflected in the name of the variety. According to its characteristics, it is an ordinary keeled chrysanthemum, the height of the stem is no more than 60 cm, the diameter of the flower is 5-7 cm. The leaves are thin, almost needle-like, of a light green hue.
The variety has an incomparable color - one bush may even have multi-colored flowers
Rainbow blooms are relatively late, beginning in mid-June. However, its duration is in line with other annual chrysanthemums, and it lasts until October.
Helios (Chrysanthemum Helios) is an annual crop that is as decorative as most perennials. It makes a very impressive impression thanks to the extraordinary shape of the petals. It is a typical representative of the crown chrysanthemum. Reaches a height of 80-90 cm, the diameter of the flowering part is up to 12 cm. All petals of Helios are bent inside the flower.
A feature of the variety is the gradual opening of the petals and their color change during the flowering period lasting more than two weeks.
Most often, the color of this variety is red-golden, but there are both yellow and orange specimens. The end of the flowering of Helios occurs at the first frost.
Planting and caring for annual chrysanthemums
Annual chrysanthemums are very easy to grow. With minimal care and attention from the grower, very good results can be obtained. Cultivation of annual chrysanthemums can be carried out practically throughout the temperate climate.
Selection and preparation of the landing site
It is recommended to plant annual chrysanthemums in sunny areas, protected from the north wind. Preparation of the soil begins in the fall of last year. To do this, fertilizers should be added to it - up to 50 g of superphosphate and 20 g of potassium sulfate per square meter. m.
Important! Too acidic soils require liming with dolomite flour or wood ash.
The site is carefully dug up and watered. In the spring, after the snow melts, it is advisable to add rotted manure to it. Then dig up the site again.
The easiest way to grow is by directly planting seeds in the ground. You can also use seedlings. Whether it is necessary or not, each grower decides for himself. In the southern regions, this will give an advantage of a maximum of two weeks (very rarely three). In the north, thanks to this method of cultivation, it is possible to accurately guess the timing of planting in order to achieve flowering literally 10-15 days after it.
In any case, the algorithm for planting and growing young plants is approximately the same. On the site, furrows up to 5 mm deep are made, into which seeds are planted with a step of 20 cm.When planting seedlings, they are placed in a square manner 5 by 5 cm.
Important! 3 seeds are laid in each planting place.
Next, the grooves are covered with earth, watered and covered with plastic wrap. The film is removed (both in the garden and at home) as soon as the first shoots appear. This usually happens within 1-2 weeks.
After 10 days, annual chrysanthemums should be fed with Ideal or Flower fertilizer. As soon as the height of the plants reaches 10-12 cm, they are thinned out (in case of planting in the garden). If seedling cultivation was used, then it is already possible to plant the bushes in open ground.
Watering and feeding
Watering is carried out as needed. As soon as the top layer of soil is covered with a crust, it is loosened, and at the end of the procedure, it is watered with warm, settled water. Watering should be done exclusively in the evening. Sprinkling is acceptable but should not be overused, especially in humid climates.
Top dressing is performed regularly from the moment flowering begins. The frequency of fertilization is once every 3-4 weeks. Use a complex universal fertilizer for ornamental plants.
Important! So that the flowering does not stop, it is violent and lush, it is necessary to cut off the ovaries immediately after flowering, without waiting for the formation of seed bolls.
Reproduction of annual chrysanthemums
Unlike perennial chrysanthemums, propagated mainly vegetatively, annuals are bred using the seed method. This is a fairly simple process, and everyone can cope with it.
As soon as flowering ends on a particular peduncle, a small seed pod is formed there. It ripens within 1-1.5 months, after which it is cut and sent to dry.
Important! Before starting the process of weathering excess moisture, the boxes must be opened.
To do this, the seeds are placed on a wooden surface or in a small calico bag and hung in a ventilated room without access to light. Drying time is about 2-3 weeks. After that, the seeds can be stored for 2 years with virtually no loss of germination. In the third year, it drops to 50-60%.
Diseases and pests of annual chrysanthemums
As ornamental plants with a very multifaceted breeding history, annual chrysanthemums can be susceptible to a large number of diseases. The manifestations of fungal infections for such flowers are almost the norm.
The most common disease is gray mold. The symptomatology of the disease is standard - the appearance of small local formations of brown color, resembling mold.
The defeat of gray rot begins with young leaves located closer to the apex
There is no cure. If even a small part of the plant is damaged, it should be removed from the soil and burned. In addition, disinfection of the place where the bush grew is recommended. It can be made with any copper-containing preparation.
Preventive measures consist in the timely disinfection of planting material, as well as garden tools.
Aphids are especially dangerous for the plant. Usually, annual chrysanthemums are affected by either the white greenhouse or brown chrysanthemum aphid. From the point of view of the negative impact of the possible consequences and methods of control, these two insects are completely identical. All the differences are only in appearance.
White greenhouse aphids like to hide under the surface of their leaves.
To get rid of aphids on annual chrysanthemums, it is enough to treat the bushes with a solution of copper sulfate and soap in water (200 g, 20 g and 10 liters, respectively). This can be done with a sprayer. Repeat if necessary after 1-2 weeks.
Photo of annual chrysanthemums
The photo below shows various ways to use annual chrysanthemums in garden design:
Mostly annual chrysanthemums are used as a filler for mixborders.
Low-growing varieties (for example, Kamina Red), when densely planted, perform the function of cover plants
Annual chrysanthemums are often grown in pots and flowerpots.
In flower beds, these plants mainly fill areas of the middle and low level.
Annual cut chrysanthemums can be obtained in pots almost at any time of the year.
Chrysanthemum annual is a beautiful and long-flowering plant that is the closest relative of asters. Unlike perennial varieties, this culture is unpretentious in care, relatively resistant to disease and can tolerate long periods of cold snaps. In landscape design, annual chrysanthemums are mainly used as plants of the lower and middle tier.