Haretail: an ornamental cereal to decorate your garden


The haretail (Lagurus ovatus) is a miniature cereal plant. It got its name due to the external similarity of spikelets with hare tails. Lagurus is used in landscape design and in floristry for decorating flower beds, garden plots and creating flower arrangements.

Brief description of the lagurus

The stem of the plant and its leaves are silvery-green in color. The length of the stem reaches 60 cm. The leaves are attached to it at the very base and reach a length of 20 cm. The spikelets have a lush, elongated structure. Their length is 2–3 cm. Spikelets are covered with light-colored edging.

The homeland of the plant is the Mediterranean coast. For this reason, it takes root well in regions with a warm climate, on rocky, dry soil. In colder areas with harsh winters, the plant may not survive until spring.

His spikelets usually appear in July, but in warm regions they can be observed in early May.

Haretail can be grown both in pots on the balcony and in the garden

This plant is unpretentious to care for. Any soil is suitable for him. The haretail is photophilous, but a small shadow will not harm it. Frequent watering is recommended, especially at high air temperatures and the absence of natural access to moisture in the form of rain.

Haretail in a cultural environment

This plant is distributed all over the world and is actively used in floristry and landscape design.

Where does it grow

In our country, lagurus takes root best in regions with a warm climate, in which it can survive a relatively warm winter:

  • Krasnodar region,
  • Volgograd region,
  • Rostov region,
  • Stavropol region,
  • Republic of Kalmykia, etc.

In the world, it is common in temperate, subtropical, tropical zones: Egypt, Israel, Greece, Bulgaria, Turkey, Ukraine, Croatia, Italy, etc.

In the wild, haretail grows on sandy coastal soils

In a number of countries, these fluffy spikelets are cultivated.

Areas of application of dried flowers

Most often, lagurus is used in bouquets of dried flowers.

The pharmacological properties inherent in the plant are unknown, therefore, in official medicine, in folk treatment, it is not used. The main uses for this fluffy herb are:

  • landscape design (improvement of the territory with the help of various natural components - stones, reservoirs and plants);
  • floristry (creation of bouquets, compositions, handicrafts from flowers).

Landscape design

Haretail is very popular with landscape designers. It looks good on an alpine slide, in mixed flower beds, mixborders (beds in which plants are planted in multiple rows or multi-tiered), as well as in a single planting.

Planting ornamental cereals in a standard flower bed is an original technique that gives a zest to any composition. Spikelets of lagurus help set off yellow chrysanthemums, asters, and other bright flowers.

The combination of white, lilac and burgundy flowers with light green spikelets of a hare tail looks very impressive

Ease of care and long-term preservation of the decorative properties of the spikelet make this plant a real boon for any landscape designer.

The best solution is to plant it together with unpretentious crops, which also do not differ in demanding soil composition. Often it is planted in a group with perennial herbaceous crops, in which the foliage has a dark, saturated shade. This neighborhood gives the site contrast, brightness. An example of such a composition is the combination of lagurus with Irezine Herbst, Coleus Blume.

The use of haretail in landscape design: photo

Planting and leaving

The cultivation of this plant is done in two ways: by seeds and seedlings, depending on how early flowering is necessary for the gardener.

Seeds

Plant seeds can be planted in the ground only after the necessary weather conditions have been established.

As a rule, haretail seeds are planted in May.

It is advisable to choose a sunny place, since the plant belongs to the photophilous. A small diffused shadow will not hurt, but the most lush and large spikelets appear when planted in the sun.

Planting a plant with seeds consists of the following stages.

  1. Choose a suitable place.
  2. Fluff up the ground.
  3. Immerse the planting material a couple of centimeters.
  4. Drizzle.
  5. Wait for the first shoots (after about two weeks).
  6. Thin the planting so that only the strongest stems remain at a distance of 10 centimeters from each other.

Seedlings

Sowing haretail for seedlings is carried out in March-April in nutritious loose soil

The use of seedlings allows you to get results in a short time. To plant a plant using this method, you must do the following:

  1. Plant seeds in pots.
  2. After two weeks, put the box with sprouts on a warm windowsill, closer to the light.
  3. Thin seedlings if they grow too densely.
  4. After establishing suitable weather, plant the seedlings in the ground at a distance of 10 cm from each other.
  5. Water the beds abundantly.

How to care

In the absence of rain, the plant should be watered at least twice a week.

Caring for the plant is not difficult, but some of the nuances should still be considered:

  • the flower loves water and does not feel well in dry weather, so you always need to monitor the level of soil moisture;
  • feeding before the flowering period - with nitrogen-based fertilizers twice with a difference of about 10 days - ensures that the inflorescences will be as lush as possible;
  • for decorative use of spikelets after cutting, they must be hung loosely until they are completely dry.

Application in floristry

If this plant is grown for the purpose of its further use in floristry, it is necessary to cut the spikelets immediately after the beginning of flowering, since during this period they are the lightest and most beautiful.

Delicate shades of colored lagurus give a bouquet of dried flowers beauty, tenderness and fluffiness

The light shade of the bristles is an additional advantage, because in this case it is easy to paint them in any color.

After cutting, the spikelets are suspended in a drying room. Timely collected, properly dried inflorescences can be stored for several years and used to create various compositions.

The number of options for their use is not limited and depends solely on the imagination of the florist. Spikelets can be made into an independent multi-colored bouquet or complement a ready-made flower group.

Beautiful compositions from a painted hare's tail in the photo

How to paint a hare tail at home

Dry spikelets of the plant can be painted in various shades. This technique allows you to create unique and effective compositions. Such cheerful multi-colored bouquets can delight the eye all winter.

Coloring can be done at home. You can get a special florist spray from art or flower shops, but it doesn't come cheap.

While floristic paint is usually quite bright and has a pungent chemical odor that remains on the spikelet, a solution of food coloring or a decoction of a coloring plant, poured into a spray bottle, will give the plant a more delicate shade and eliminate the need to breathe chemistry.

A simple alternative is to paint the inflorescences with food coloring, watercolors, gouache, diluted with water. The use of natural dyes is also allowed - a decoction of cornflower, linden, sage, chamomile, potato tops, onion husks, etc.

It is most convenient to act with a conventional spray bottle, spraying the composition onto the spikelets. In order not to stain the environment, it is better to carry out the procedure outdoors. As a last resort, you can do this in the bathroom.

Colored spikelets are suspended with spikelets down and dried for two days.

Reviews about the cultivation and use of the plant

Thus, the haretail is a versatile plant for landscape designers and florists. Unpretentious care, the possibility of artificial coloring and the long shelf life of cut spikelets make lagurus a truly unique crop.

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The haretail or lagurus is an annual that grows up to 60 cm in height. The plant has a very fabulous appearance and can be grown with children who love its name and shape, which resembles a hare's tail. This plant for little hares will definitely become one of the main decorations of the garden.

Spikelets of lagurus with proper care can be very fluffy and can grow up to 3 cm in length. Spikelet pubescence sometimes reaches up to 4 cm in length. The flat, pale green leaves are attached at the base of the grass and reach 20 cm in length. Lagurus foliage is also covered with small villi.

In nature, this plant can be found on rocky slopes, on coastal and riverine sands, on pebbles. In its natural environment, it grows in the subtropics of the Mediterranean.


Tips for planting and caring for your haretail in the garden

  1. Choosing a location for landing. A flowerbed located in a sunny location is most suitable, but a little shading will not negatively affect Lagurus. Growing in garden containers and pots is permissible. They need to be placed on terraces or balconies. The location should ensure the duration of daylight hours within 12-14 hours per day. It is important that there is no nearby groundwater flowing nearby, and moisture from precipitation or melting snow does not stagnate.
  2. Soil for lagurus. The plant is not very demanding on the soil and will feel great on any substrate. But if we take into account the natural distribution of this representative of cereals, it is better that the soil is light and well-drained, allowing water and air to easily reach the roots. However, if you add compost or humus to the soil, the hare tail will only be grateful. On heavy soil, moisture during prolonged precipitation can stagnate, which will entail rotting of the root system. To prevent this from happening, sand must be added to the soil mixture when planting.
  3. Planting a haretail in open ground should be performed in the second half of May, when the threat of return frosts has passed, since the plant does not tolerate cold at all. If seedlings are planted, then it is recommended to prepare the soil before this. Due to the delicate root system, transplanting always has a bad effect on the lagurus, therefore it is better to use peat cups, from which the seedlings are not removed, or to use the transshipment method when the earthen ball does not collapse and the roots are not injured. Before planting, the soil is watered abundantly, and when the bulk of the moisture evaporates and is absorbed, they begin to place the haretail seedlings in the holes. The distance between the plants should be at least 10 cm. After the young lagurus are planted, the soil next to them is compressed and well moistened. In order for the summer to take root faster, you can add any root formation stimulator (for example, heteroauxinic acid or Kornevin) to the water for irrigation.
  4. Watering. Since haretail grows mainly in warm areas, it can easily tolerate short-term droughts. This is due to the fact that in coastal natural areas there are often morning and evening fogs, there is sea dust, and the air is saturated with moisture. However, when grown in a garden, the plant will be deprived of this and will wither without moisture (often even a slight drought can lead to death), especially if there is no rainfall for a long time on summer days. Therefore, it is recommended to irrigate twice a week, and in dry periods - every other day. This is especially true for plants planted in pots, where rain drops cannot reach. Moistening should be performed when the soil from above has already dried out. Water the lagurus carefully so that drops of moisture do not fall on the stems and inflorescences, due to pubescence. If the plantings do not have enough moisture, then the panicles will form small and seemingly inconspicuous. Filling the substrate will lead to rotting and death of the plant.
  5. Fertilizers for the haretail are performed before the flowering process begins. In this case, you can start immediately after a week or one and a half from the time of planting the seedlings in the ground. The frequency between feedings should be 10 days. You can use the mullein diluted in water for the first time in a ratio of 1:10. In subsequent times, it is recommended to use drugs with a large amount of nitrogen content, such as urea (carbamide) or ammonium nitrate. This will help build up the green mass of the bushes. It is better to use liquid formulations of fertilizers that dissolve in water intended for irrigation. But it should be remembered that an excess of nitrogen can lead to too dark color of the foliage and inflorescences, as well as to the rapid breaking off of the stems. When the flowering period begins for the lagurus, its plantings should be fertilized twice with complex preparations (for example, Kemira-Universal) - this will help prolong the formation of panicle ears. You can also replace one of the portions of these preparations with horny flour, which will provide the plant with the necessary nutrients.
  6. Cutting off haretail inflorescences. The highly decorative panicles that appear on the lagurus are often used in bouquets, but it is important to cut them off before they turn yellow. This will guarantee that the spikelets will not crumble yet and will retain their appearance for a long time. Before cutting, you need to wait for the dew drops to dry on the panicles, that is, they select lunch time or before the evening dew falls.
  7. The use of haretail in landscape design. Since the height of the lagurus usually has medium-sized stems, it is recommended to use it for planting in compositions of stones (rock gardens or rockeries), to plant borders or garden paths with such plantings. When planting in stone gardens, you can use the patchwork method, that is, they try to arrange the haretail in groups, small in size. Also, this representative of cereals will help fill the void between annuals with bright flowers or shrubs. So it is customary to arrange spaces in a rose garden or under fruit bushes. It should be remembered that quite unpretentious plant forms coexist next to the haretail, which will feel comfortable on poor substrates. Their bright inflorescences will be well set off by the pale green of the lagurus, while bringing revitalization to the floral arrangement. An interesting result will be the proximity of the haretail with perennial herbaceous representatives of the flora, which have a darker rich green foliage color. Here you can use combinations with Iresene Herbst (Iresine herbstii), Tenacious creeping (Ajuga reptans) or with Coleus Blume (Plectranthus scutellarioides).
  8. General tips for the care of a haretail. Several times during the growing season of the plant, it is necessary to weed the weeds. After rain or watering, it is better to loosen the soil shallowly so that it does not compact. Otherwise, a crust will form, which will subsequently retain both air and moisture.
  9. Application of dried lagurus flowers. Since the haretail has decorative paniculate inflorescences, consisting of spikelets and decorated with hairs, it can be used when drawing up dry bouquets.The ovoid inflorescences cut to full maturity are collected in not too tight bunches, having previously removed all the foliage from the stems. Then the bundles should be suspended in a room with good ventilation with the stems up, and the spikelets down.

When completely dry, dried flowers have a creamy shade that can be easily changed by coloring. For painting it is recommended to use:

  • spray guns (spray guns) and conventional water-soluble dyes
  • paints in special aerosol cans.

After toning has been done, it will take 1-2 days to dry, and then haretail spikelets are ready for use in dry phytocompositions. For example, decorators combine painted inflorescences of lagurus with bright flowers well, but it is possible to make an independent bouquet from the spikelets themselves, painted in different shades.


Growing and care

Haretail is not pretentious to the type of soil and grows well on any soil. The plant is light-loving, but a slight shade is allowed. Suitable for growing in the garden or in pots on the balcony. It is drought tolerant, but needs daily watering in hot weather, especially when grown indoors where raindrops cannot reach.

In order to achieve the maximum height of spikelets that will be used in bouquet arrangements, the lagurus needs to be provided with optimal conditions for development. The land is needed fertile, loose, you can add sand. Before flowering, nitrogen fertilization is applied at intervals of 10 days along with watering. After the formation of spikelets, they are fed twice with complex fertilizer. Light access is required for 12-14 hours.

Spikelets for bouquets are cut before they begin to turn yellow. This will prevent shedding and maintain an attractive appearance for a long time. Before cutting, they wait until the dew drops dry, that is, they produce it closer to lunch or at the beginning of the evening.

The haretail is resistant to diseases and pests, as well as to weather conditions. An excess of nitrogen fertilizers causes the stems to break off and a more intense (even darker) color of the greenery. To avoid this, but give the cereal enough nutrients, you can replace one of the fertilizer portions with horny flour.


Harvesting dried flowers

If you plan to use fluffy ponytails in your floral arrangements, cut off the lagurus as soon as it gets pounded. Do not pull, otherwise the fading panicles will take on a dirty tint. Cleaning is carried out in clear weather, in late morning or early evening, so that there are no dew drops on the inflorescences. For drying, the collected ears are tied into small sheaves and hung in a ventilated room or laid out in a thin layer on a flat surface. Keep in mind that hare tails, dried in the shade, retain their natural color (green or creamy yellow), and under the bright sunlight, the inflorescences fade white, and it will be very convenient to paint them. You can give the "cones" the desired shade with the help of floristic spray paint (sold in specialized stores) or natural dyes (decoctions of cornflower, linden, potato tops, onion husks, etc.)

What a lagurus composition will turn out depends on your imagination: you can collect multi-colored fluffies in a voluminous bouquet or add them to a complex "product" of other dried flowers (lunaria, kermek, immortelle, gomphren, celosia). When collected and properly prepared, haretail panicles retain their attractiveness for several years.


Watch the video: Dried Lagurus. Rabbit Tail mini pack DI-129


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