All gardeners are well aware that it is most practical to acquire planting material of ornamental plants at a time when seedlings can be planted as quickly as possible to a permanent place. But in most large supermarkets, planting material appears on the shelves almost in January-February. And already in March the assortment becomes so rich that it can be really difficult to resist buying. In this article, I would like to consider the feasibility of an early purchase and share ways to preserve ornamental plants before planting them in the garden.Early purchase of perennials - how to choose and save until planting. @ Garden Landscaping Ideas
Is it worth buying perennials in February-March?
A similar strategy for marketers is understandable. New Year's holidays are far behind, purchasing power is declining, and why not offer the buyer something that is very difficult to resist?
That's why we, going for bread and milk, often bring colorful bags from the store with various roots inside. Well, and whether it will be possible to keep the acquisition until spring - this is how lucky. Responsibility for this lies with the impatient gardener.
The most important advantage of early purchase of planting stock of ornamental plants is the presence in stores of a rich assortment that allows you to purchase interesting rare varieties. When the snow comes down and stable heat is established, then it will be possible to come to the store already to the “heading analysis”. Interesting plants and original varieties never settle on the shelves and are the fastest to sort. Therefore, in many cases, it still makes sense to visit the garden department in late winter or early spring.
The conditions in supermarkets are often far from those needed by plants, so it is likely that the rhizomes will simply dry out or, on the contrary, will be covered with mold. But most likely they will begin to grow rapidly, and due to a lack of light in the future they will be severely depleted or even die. Therefore, if you really need a particular flower, you need to buy it as soon as possible in order to try to save it yourself.
Individual tuberous perennials with a long growing season, for example, tuber begonia, is the time to buy it in February-March, to immediately plant it in a bowl for germination. And finally, there are many rhizome plants that can calmly hibernate in an ordinary refrigerator until warm days.
In this case, it makes no sense to procrastinate if you have a place in the vegetable department. Therefore, let us first look at which plants can be safely kept in a sleeping state, and which will require attention and care in order to safely preserve them until spring.Rhizomes of many plants will calmly hibernate in an ordinary refrigerator until warm days. @ sadsevzap
Tuberous, onion and tuber-onion perennials
Selection and storage of rhizomes of tuber begonia
Usually, rhizomes of numerous tuberous begonia varieties appear on sale first. And this is quite justified, because the germination of begonias usually begins at the end of winter. Begonia tubers are best bought near the end of February or early March. At this time, the plants are already starting to wake up, and you can choose the most viable instance.
The outlined buds should be sought in that part of the tuber, where there is a noticeable deepening, but the convex part is the bottom, where roots are subsequently formed. Depending on the variety, the buds may be white or pink. When choosing a tuber, you should also pay attention to the size and weight of the nodule. It is better to give preference to medium-sized tubers (more than 4 cm, but not more than 8 cm), since too large tubers usually belong to older plants that bloom worse.
By weight, the tubers should not be too light, as this may indicate that they were very dry during storage. A healthy tuber should have a dense texture and even brown color, without suspicious spots, plaque and soft patches.
Selection and storage of dahlia root tubers
Dahlias are stored in the vegetable section of the refrigerator without any problems, so you can buy them at any time, as soon as the desired varieties are on sale.
When choosing root tubers, it is important to ensure that the nodules are not torn off the stem, since in this case they usually do not germinate. It is best to look for fresh renewal buds near the stalk, which ensures that the spine is alive. But their absence at the beginning of spring is not critical, the main thing is that the root tubers are full-bodied and do not look over-dried and shriveled.
Without any problems in the vegetable section of the refrigerator or basement, cannabis, tigridia, gladiolus, crocosmia, acidanthera, anemones, ranunculus and some other flowers can be kept until germination. Freesia can be left at low room temperature. But it makes sense to immediately plant its corms in bowls in February-March, since freesia will bloom only 5-6 months after planting.
All of the above plants can be stored in a refrigerator or a cool basement at a temperature of + 4 ... +6 degrees in the same package with peat where they were when sold. But for greater reliability, it is better to remove the planting material and wrap the roots with several layers of newspaper or put the bulbs in a paper bag. Before storing, it is important to inspect the tubers and bulbs for rot and stains and remove suspicious tubers.Dahlia sprouts at the junction of the tuber with the stem, so the torn nodule will not germinate. @ Lyudmila Svetlitskaya
Lily bulbs - selection and storage before planting
Bulbs of lilies deserve a separate discussion. Almost all types of lilies can be kept for a short time in the refrigerator, but it is better that such storage does not last longer than a month.
It should be noted that species, oriental lilies, as well as Martagon lilies, react worst of all to long-term storage in the refrigerator. In this case, the upper scales begin to dry in the latter, and after that the sprout itself. In order not to lose planting material, the above lilies should not be in a cool basement or refrigerator for more than two weeks.
Lily bulbs can be bought both with the "beaks" of young shoots, and without them. It may seem counterintuitive, but it is also better not to store the sprouted lilies for a long time (no more than a month), as they will need a longer warm time to allow them to wake up.
After a month of overexposure in cool conditions, it is better to plant the bulbs in half-liter cups, after which the plantings are again cleaned in the refrigerator. It is possible to transfer lilies to a warm, bright place after the sprouts grow by 15 cm. Before planting in the soil, it is better to protect the planting from too bright sun.Typically, the hand reaches intuitively for the largest green bush, but keeping the least awakened arms will be easier. @ Lyudmila Svetlitskaya
Most perennials go on sale in perforated peat bags. The transparency of such packages allows a good look at what is inside. After you have “laid eyes” on the bright image on the front picture, do not put the first packaging you have in the basket, but turn it upside down and examine what is in the bag.
In some cases, the package may no longer have anything, because either the spine has completely dried up, or (which happens most often) someone has already made money on a “badly lying” product. It is most reliable that the rhizome has a small green kidney. But, at the same time, it is likely that such planting material will be worse stored in the refrigerator, and the spine will have to immediately be planted in a container.
Long overgrown branches are also not a good option. A plant that has grown rapidly has no place in the refrigerator; it needs moist soil and enough light and heat, and not coolness and dry peat.
Plants with thick fleshy rhizomes are best stored in the refrigerator or in the cool basement, since they have accumulated a sufficient supply of moisture and nutrients and are not afraid of a long period of rest. Such decorative perennials primarily include: astilbe, hosts, daylilies, frankincense, tradescantia, black cohosh, Volzhanka, Rogers and some others.
These crops can be safely bought at the end of winter and the beginning of spring and stored almost until they land in the ground. But in the early to mid-April, it is still desirable to plant the planting material in separate pots. These perennials are well preserved in store packaging, but for safety reasons, you can put them in paper bags or wrap a newspaper in a couple of layers.
Another group of perennials has a weaker root system, which is difficult to tolerate the harsh storage conditions in the shipping bag. Such perennials include heichera, various bells, sages, Veronica, brunners, carnations, delphiniums, geraniums, bathing suits, phloxes and many others.
In order to successfully store such plants, it is necessary to create favorable conditions for the root system. For this, the rhizomes are planted in pots of a suitable size. If traces of rot are noticeable on the delenki, then it is better to completely remove the individual affected roots or cut them with a sharp knife, and dust the places of the cut with charcoal.
If you suspect a disease before planting, it is better to etch the planting material in a fungicide solution, for example, with Maxim. After processing, a universal peat substrate is poured into the container to about half, then a delenka with spread roots is placed, and only after that the container is gently covered with soil to the level of the root neck.
After planting, the soil should be carefully tamped and lightly watered. Such plantings are placed in a dry and dark room with a temperature not exceeding +5 degrees (in the refrigerator, a cool basement or on a non-freezing loggia) until April.
In the absence of sufficient space in the refrigerator, containers with plants can be immediately put on the window. Of course, in this case, perennials will immediately grow and they may need additional illumination, as well as protection from the spider mite, which gladly attacks weakened plants.
Their flowering in this case will be early, but not plentiful. Nevertheless, in any case, this is a more optimal way to store such perennials than to send them to the refrigerator and hope for a miracle.Delenka, which went into growth, it is better not to store in the refrigerator for longer than a month. @ Lyudmila Svetlitskaya
Ornamental shrubs and creepers
Roses, hydrangeas, weigels and other beautifully flowering or decorative foliage shrubs with barely swollen buds or in a completely dormant state after purchase should be removed from the cardboard packaging and wrapped the entire bush in two layers of newspaper. In this form, seedlings can be sent to the refrigerator for about 1-1.5 months.
It is important to lay the bushes in storage in a horizontal position, as this slows down the sap flow and stops the opening of the kidneys. However, keep in mind that the more awakened buds are on the bush, the less time they should spend in a cool place. In any case, in the early to mid-April, it is better to pull the bushes out of the storehouse, plant them in the bowls and put them on the windowsill.
If you purchased bushes with very overgrown shoots, then sending them to the refrigerator is unacceptable. The only way out in this situation is to transplant the seedlings into a more spacious container and put in the coolest and brightest place in the house, and it is better to remove the buds that the plant forms.
Peonies - selection and storage of rhizomes
Peonies with unbroken buds can also be overexposed in the refrigerator. As a rule, peonies go on sale in plastic bags, slightly sprinkled with peat. Before laying the rhizome for storage, you need to remove and carefully inspect for rot or mold, rotten places need to be cut, and cut the slices with brilliant green or sprinkled with powdered charcoal.
Delenki with a suspicious plaque, it is better to pre-etch in an antifungal drug. After this, the rhizome is again placed in the transport bag and filled with additional soil so that the root is completely in the ground. “Planted” in this way is better to moisten the plant from the spray gun. In this form, delenki are stored in the refrigerator until mid-spring.
If you purchased a plant that has grown rapidly, it is best not to risk it by sending it cool. There are a lot of nutrients in the juicy rhizome of a peony, and even the absence of light and low temperature will not stop the process of shoot growth, but the stems will be weak, pale and curved, they may become moldy and rot. Therefore, peonies with large sprouts are immediately planted in a container and placed on a cool windowsill.The grown lianas easily break on the edges of the package. @ Lyudmila Svetlitskaya
Creepers - planting material selection and storage
Various decorative and fruit vines, such as actinidia, lemongrass, grapes, wood pliers and others, it is better to take home from the store as soon as possible. But wait for the buds to wake up on the plants that are on sale to guarantee a viable specimen, and then you can make a purchase.
These plants grow thin pale stems during their stay in the store, which are intertwined between neighboring seedlings and break on the edges of cardboard packaging. And transportation of a bush with long brittle stems will also be difficult. Therefore, it is better to let the liana wake up at your place.
It is recommended to transplant the seedling immediately into a more spacious pot, 2-3 times the size of the transport container, this volume should be enough for the plant to land in the ground. In a pot, it is better to immediately install a support for indoor flowers, so that young shoots have something to hold on to.
In the cold season, the seedling is contained on the lightest and coolest window as an ordinary indoor plant. As a rule, there are no serious problems with overexposure, with the exception of a possible attack of a spider mite, which is important to notice in time by regularly inspecting the back of the leaves.
After planting a seedling in the ground, it is very important to shade the plant for the first two weeks, because the leaves are not used to such intense sunlight and can get a serious burn.