Plant celosia (lat.Celosia), or cellosis - a genus of the Amarantovye family, although not so long ago it was attributed to the Marevye family. The name of the plant comes from the Greek kelos, which means "flaming, burning" and characterizes the color and shape of the inflorescences, similar to multi-colored tongues of flame. In nature, celosia flowers grow in the warm regions of Africa, Asia and the Americas, there are about 60 species of them today, but in the garden culture they grow most often Celosia comb, Celosia pinnate, as well as Celosia spikelet.
Read more about growing cellosia below.
The flower of celosia is represented by both annual species and perennials, there are shrubs among them, but in cold winters, celosia is grown as an annual plant, since it does not tolerate sub-zero temperatures. The stems of celosia are straight and branched, the leaves are alternate, ovate, ovate-lanceolate or linear-lanceolate. Small flowers are collected in spike-shaped, comb or paniculate inflorescences of different shades - yellow, pink, red, orange, scarlet and golden. The fruit is a polyspermous capsule.
Readers are often asked to tell you how to grow celosia from seeds, since this is practically the only way to reproduce it. But before sowing, the seed must be kept for 3-4 hours in a solution of Epin and Zircon (a drop of each drug in a glass of water) in order to soak the too dense seed coat. Sowing is carried out in March or early April in bowls on the surface of the soil, consisting in equal parts of humus earth and vermiculite. Sow lightly, and you do not need to sprinkle the seeds, just press them firmly to the ground and sprinkle with water from a spray bottle.
The container with crops is covered with foil or glass and kept on a light windowsill at a temperature of 23-25 ºC, protected from direct sunlight and from time to time ventilated, moisturized and removed condensation. If you don't want to mess around with picking, sow the seeds directly into individual pots. Seedlings begin to appear within eight days.
Growing seedlings of celosia involves the organization of additional lighting for seedlings for 4-6 hours, since at this time of the year the daylight hours are still too short. In the case of group sowing of seeds, seedlings have to be dived twice. The first time - when 2-3 leaves appear in the seedlings - they are seated in the same substrate in a container 4-5 cm deep at a distance of five centimeters from each other.
When the seedlings take root after the pick, they are fed simultaneously with watering with a weak solution of a complex mineral fertilizer for flowering plants. When the plants get stronger, they are dived into a deeper cassette or, with the help of a scoop, are removed from the container along with an earthen lump and transplanted into individual pots (preferably peat-humus). Once you are sure that the plant has started, you can do a second similar feeding.
The time to plant seedlings in open ground comes when the heat is finally established and the threat of night frosts has passed - in the second half or at the end of May. The site for the plant is chosen sunny, sheltered from the wind and well-drained. If the soil is on the site of an acidic reaction, it is lime before planting. But do not add fresh organic matter to the soil for cellosia - the plant does not tolerate it.
Celosia is planted in the usual way for garden plants. Young seed-grown celosia is still very fragile, so try not to damage its root system when transplanting and use the transshipment method. If you dived or sowed it in peat-humus pots, then plant the celosia in the ground right with them. It should only be borne in mind that undersized species and plant varieties are planted with an interval of 15-20 cm between specimens, and tall ones - at a distance of 25-30 cm from each other.
Growing cellosis and caring for it in the garden does not contain any particular difficulties, but you should know two of its weak points: cellosia grown from seeds at home can die in the open field even from weak frosts, and besides, it does not tolerate too wet soil ... Based on these features, organize the care of the whole. So, you need to water the celosia only on the hottest days, if it has dropped the leaves and stopped forming flower stalks.
But do not neglect the monthly feeding, which the celosia accepts very favorably, but do not get carried away with nitrogen fertilizers, otherwise you will get lush foliage, but you will not see flowering. Loosen the soil around the plants, remove the weeds - that's all the trick.
In the "tender seedling age" from excessive moisture, the black leg affects the cellosis. As soon as you find a disease (blackening of the stem at the base), loosen the soil, sprinkle it with a thin layer of wood ash and stop watering for a while. Sometimes aphids settle on the plant, which can be dealt with by spraying cellosia with this composition: 2 teaspoons of liquid soap, a glass of vegetable oil in two glasses of water. Processing needs to be done several times in a few days in the evenings. Cellosis is resistant to all other insects and diseases.
In order to collect the seeds of celosia, cut off a few wilting blossoms and place them in a dim room in a vase without water. When the bouquet is dry, shake it over a newspaper, and what is poured, blow through and pour into a storage box. You can not keep the branches in a vase, but hang them down with inflorescences and lay a newspaper under them, on which ripe seeds will pour out of the dried bolls.
Usually, after flowering, celosia is destroyed in order to plant new specimens next spring. But celosia is the perfect plant for dry bouquets: cut, peel and bring into the house some of the most beautiful flowering branches of the tall variety, tie them in a bunch and let them dry in a dark room with good ventilation, and then put them in an empty vase so that they decorated your house in the middle of winter with their bright beautiful flame.
We invite you to familiarize yourself with the most popular species, varieties and varieties of celosia in horticultural culture. A favorite of our gardens is silver celosia, available in two varieties:
Or Cockscomb (Celosia argentea f. Cristata) - the plant is 45 cm in height, but there are less tall varieties. The leaves, depending on the variety, are green, burgundy, bronze or golden. Small flowers are collected in a massive inflorescence that resembles a cockscomb in purple-red or orange shades. Blooms from mid-summer to October. Varieties:
She is panicle cellosis (Celosia argentea f. plumosa) - a variety sometimes reaching a height of 1 meter, but having undersized and even dwarf varieties. Straight stems end with large panicles of yellow, orange and all shades of red. Leaves, depending on the variety, are juicy green, light green, pink or red. Blooms from July to October. Varieties:
Or celosia Hutton (Celosia spicata) has not yet taken root in our gardens, but interest in it has grown noticeably in recent years. Its height is from 20 to 120 cm, and medium-sized, spikelet-like paniculate inflorescences, in addition to red, yellow and orange shades, are also painted in white. And coral spikelet celosia will not leave anyone indifferent!
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When choosing a planting site, it is best to give preference to a sunny area that is well closed from gusts of wind, as they can damage the plant. If the soil is heavy, it must be loosened thoroughly.
Celosia does not require special planting and maintenance, although it reacts positively to the addition of a small amount of humus before planting.
Growing seedlings of celosia is not an arduous task, however, some features will have to be taken into account:
note! During the seedling period, celosia can get sick with a "black leg". If suddenly you notice that the stems of the seedlings have begun to turn black at the base, loosen the soil, powder its surface with wood ash and temporarily cancel watering.
Reproduction is carried out by seeds and dividing the bush. Seeds can be sown in spring and late autumn. Sowing is possible as early as possible in spring, at the first opportunity to go out into the garden. In the fall, they try to wait for the cold dry weather after the Indian summer, so that the sown seeds do not sprout until spring.
For the northern regions, it is advisable to grow seedlings and plant them in the garden after the retreat of severe cold weather. Not all seeds germinate, so stock up on more.
How to plant erigeron seeds in the ground
To sow small-petaled seeds in the ground:
Grown plants are planted at a distance of 30-40 cm.
What shoots of erigeron look like photo
For seedlings, small petals are sown in pots or boxes in early March. Shoots appear for a long time, young plants develop slowly. Use fertile soil, moisten it, distribute the seeds evenly, lightly press them into the soil, do not sprinkle.
Maintain a minimum distance of 2 to 3 cm between seedlings if sowing in a shared container. Build a mini-greenhouse by covering the crops with foil, bag or glass.
Maintain a humid environment and a temperature of 10-15 ° C - you can place the container on a cold windowsill or closed balcony. At the end of the month, expect the first shoots. They will be thin, small, but gradually they will get stronger, take root, and grow. Water gently with small amounts of warm water.
Erigeron growing from seeds photo seedlings
When the plants get crowded, transplant them carefully in separate cups. But it is better to plant two or three seeds separately in cups, so that later you do not suffer with a pick. The strongest sprout is left, the rest are cut with scissors.
At the end of March, small petals seedlings can be transplanted into the ground. Proceed carefully, it is better to pass with an earthen lump so that the fragile roots are not damaged.
Even after several months of growth in a permanent place, the plants will not be particularly strong, the first years should be covered for the winter so that the roots do not freeze.
An extremely important element in the cultivation of any plant is the way it is grown. It is important what requirements the species imposes on the planting site, what care procedures it needs, and it is also worth knowing how the flower multiplies.
It is very important to choose a suitable site and soil for growing this plant. Growing monarda is not difficult, it does not make particularly high demands - it grows on any garden soil, although it prefers soil:
Another aspect is insolation. This melliferous plant is suitable for sunny or semi-shaded areas. In shady places, the flowers will not be as large and colored.
It is best to choose a position that is warm, sunny and protected from the wind. Monarda perennial is resistant to low temperatures, does not require winter cover.
Monarda should not be planted too thickly. With dense planting, the bushes are more susceptible to powdery mildew.