Dicenter (“broken heart”): the rules of planting, growing and caring
- Type: poppy seeds
- Flowering Period: June, July, August
- Height: 15-40cm
- Color: Pink, White, Purple, Persian Blue
Lush rose bushes, tall thickets of gladioli and even lines of marigolds and calendula near the cottages look great, but quite traditional. Why not revive the familiar landscape with such a wonderful plant as a dicenter? From the earliest spring, a delicate flower will open its heart buds and decorate your garden until mid-summer, unless, of course, the rules for planting and care of the dicenter are correctly observed.
Dicenter is a name that is not very common, much more often we hear a more imaginative version of “a broken heart”. The flower received such a capacious name due to the curious shape of the buds resembling small hearts. Some know this plant as a double-spore - a literal translation of the words dis and kentron - "twice" and "spur." For the rich in legends of the French, the flower received the name “Jeanette’s heart”, for practical Germans - the “flower of the heart”, for inventive English - the “lady in the bath”, and the Russian people christened it “broken heart” in their favorite minor way.
Although many consider this plant to be European, its homeland is Japan, whence it was brought to Europe only in 1816. The beautiful flower immediately attracted attention with its bright range and interesting form of buds, so it became a regular in the gardens of aristocrats and nobles. Gardeners fell in love with a non-standard, refined dicenter so much that even the names of the varieties turned out to be “talking”: elegant, beautiful, magnificent, excellent, exceptional.
The place of the plant in the flower bed or in the flower garden is chosen depending on its variety. A high magnificent dicenter looks great in the center of the composition, miniature wandering or exceptional - along the edges or along the curb
Preparing the soil for planting a flower
Although the plant is not capricious, for better flowering since the fall, it is worth preparing a place for planting and cultivating the soil. The dicentra feels great both in areas lit by the sun and in the shade of trees, so there should be no problems with the arrangement of the flower garden. In the shady area, the buds open a little later.
In autumn, it is necessary to carefully dig a bed selected for planting to a depth of 40 cm and make it more fertile by adding humus (about 3 kg per m²). For mineral replenishment, a universal fertilizer for garden flowers in the amount of 15-20 g per 10 liters of water is suitable. In the future, when the plant gives color, it should be fed 3-4 more times - this guarantees rapid growth and lush flowering. After rain or watering, the soil around the bushes should be loosened, but very carefully, since the roots of the plants are close to the surface.
For weeding and loosening the soil, it is better to use a tool resembling a small pitchfork - the soil treatment will be gentle, and brittle roots will not be damaged
The soil should be relatively light and allow good moisture and air. If the soil is heavy, clay, it must be diluted with river sand or peat so as not to provoke root decay. Many gardeners make a “cake” of dry straw or reeds for the winter, laying them in layers and alternating with the ground in a specially dug hole.
The best ways to reproduce and transplant
There are three ways to propagate dicentres - by dividing the rhizome, aerial shoots and seeds. The last way is immediately discarded - the plant usually forms a small number of seeds, and some varieties (for example, "Magnificent") in temperate latitudes do not give them at all. With the cultivation of seeds, difficulties also arise, therefore the most optimal method of reproduction is the planting of parts of the rhizome or shoots.
It is better to divide the plant at the end of summer, when aerial shoots die off. The roots are very carefully dug up, taken out of the soil and dried - in a slightly sluggish state they become more elastic and break less. Then rhizomes are carefully divided into parts so that 3-4 buds remain on each segment to form shoots. Pieces of the root are buried in the ground in a dimly lit area and abundantly watered with warm water. To protect sections, you can sprinkle with ash. When the dividers take root, they can be transplanted to a flower bed.
To divide the old bush part of the plant is not suitable, you need to dig the whole plant. The rhizome should be carefully sorted into elements, removing dead fragments and thin processes
Early spring is also suitable for transplanting dicentres. It is necessary to choose the moment when the shoots are still “sleeping” or have just begun their growth. It is better to divide once every 5-6 years, but not less often, as the roots begin to age and die.
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- dig small holes in the flowerbed, the distance between which is 30-40 cm (the larger the adult plant, the greater the distance);
- in each hole put 3-4 delenki - for splendor;
- fill the holes with earth, lightly tamp;
- pour hot water in the sun.
Propagation by ground cuttings is carried out in the spring. Carefully dig the soil at the base of the bush and cut off small parts of the plant with a “heel” with a sharp knife. Then, the cuttings are kept in the stimulator for about a day for the rapid emergence of roots and planted in well-watered soil, finally densely covered with a greenhouse film. After about a month, the roots will appear. At a constant flowering place, the sprouts are planted only after a year.
If it is important to show the beauty and originality of a plant, it is necessary to plant it alone in a flower pot, flower pot or large ceramic pot
Features of caring for this plant
Proper cultivation of dicentres consists in constant care, during which it is necessary to monitor lighting, timely watering, weeding and loosening.
The plant blooms equally well in the shade and in the sun, but the splendor and timing of its flowering directly depends on the degree of illumination. In an open area, buds open and bloom early, and flower stalks are not very large and splendid. In the shaded areas, the color is gaining more slowly, but the “hearts” are bright, large and do not disappear until mid-summer.
The dicenter simply adores sandy and rocky soils. therefore, one of the best places for its location is the gentle slopes along the paths lined with stone or brick
For the installation of a drainage layer located under the upper fertile layer, fine expanded clay aggregate, as well as gravel or coarse river sand, are suitable
A few tips for caring for the center:
- The rich color of the buds is ensured if the spring is fed with superphosphate, and then in the process of growth, another 3-4 feeding is performed.
- Even after the plant fades, it is necessary to fertilize with nitrogen to better form new buds.
- During a strong drop in temperature, it is better to cover the plant using non-woven material.
- Faded brushes must be removed on time, then the flowering period of other branches will last.
- With the advent of autumn, the aerial part is removed, leaving stumps no higher than 5 cm.
Soil requires special attention. With waterlogging, the roots of the dicentres begin to decay, so it is better to choose raised places to place the flower beds. If the plant has already been planted, and the soil is regularly flooded, you should artificially raise the soil and equip the flower bed with a drainage layer and grooves for outflow of water. At high temperatures, watering should be carried out more often and more abundantly so that the roots do not dry out. To retain moisture and protect against overheating, peat or humus is used, which is spread in a dense layer around the base of the plant.
The most common varieties of dicenters
The magnificent Dicenter got its name due to its size - it is the largest and lush plant. The adult specimen looks like a voluminous bush covered with openwork foliage and densely strewn with flowering brushes. The most common hue range is bright pink, plants with white flowers are much less common. White-flowered forms have a lower growth, but no less lush and decorative.
In order for the magnificent dicenter to bloom again towards the end of summer, you need to use a little trick: at the end of flowering, the brushes with peduncles should be carefully cut
The beautiful center is a miniature shrub reaching a height of no more than 30 cm. It blooms in small but elegant flowers from pale white to bright purple. The flowering period is quite large - from the beginning of spring to the end of summer. Some varieties have an unusual silver leaf color, as if covered with a light fluff. The plant is suitable for decorating borders and alpine slides.
The beautiful center is one of the plants that manages to give seeds. This is due to its long flowering, until the very fall, when there is a complete formation of bolls with seeds
Exceptional dicenter (excellent) is characterized by small growth - not more than 25 cm. Against the background of bluish-gray leaves resembling the shape of fern leaves, fragile pink, purple or white inflorescences flaunt. It blooms modestly, not very profusely, for 2 months, and in cool summers - throughout the season. This plant is easy to winter distillation.
Due to the similarity of leaves with fern, the dicenter exceptional is ideal for spectacular decoration of alpine hills, rockeries or low coniferous plantings
As a result of selection, the dicenter curly (climbing) became an amazing variety, an annual, the birthplace of which is usually considered the Himalayas. It does not look like a familiar bush, but rather long, up to 2 m of liana, which blooms with beautiful yellow buds.
It is more difficult to grow a curling dicenter than its relatives. Lianas require special care and attention, higher temperatures and absolutely can not stand the cold
The roving center is small in size - no higher than 15-20 cm and with short roots. The flowers are rare, but large, have a white, pink and red color. Has a later flowering period - from July to September. Feels good in temperate climates, easily tolerates cooling.
The wandering dicenter prefers not waterlogged soil. He loves sandy, gravelly or rocky soil, so it must be used to decorate alpine slides, screes and slopes.
Dicenter is a universal flower, equally suitable for single plantings, and for decorating group flower beds. Low varieties are used to decorate lawns, alpine hills, rockeries and thickets of evergreen shrubs, large ones - to create lush multi-level flower beds around the house.