Diastia is an ornamental plant of the Norichnikov family. It comes from the mountainous regions of South Africa, in the conditions of the Eurasian climate it grows both in open garden ground as an annual ground cover plant, and in hanging pots or containers, as well as on lawns. Among gardeners, it is considered to be unpretentious, but cultivation still has certain nuances.
Why growing seedlings from seeds is better than planting in open ground
Reproduction of diastia is carried out both by seeds and by green cuttings. Each method has its own pros and cons.
When planting seeds directly into open ground, the flowering of plants occurs only in August. Not so productive for an annual. It is on this basis that experienced gardeners recommend planting seeds of diastia to obtain seedlings at home in advance. And with the onset of the summer cottage, having planted ready-made seedlings in open ground, the florist gets brightly flowering ornamental plants much earlier.
Another advantage of growing diastia from seeds: when planting seeds in open ground, flowers may not sprout due to unstable climatic conditions in spring. At the same time, for plants sown at home, a florist can create optimal conditions for growth, which is a guarantee of the survival of young animals.
When to plant: general dates and best dates for the lunar calendar
Usually seeds of diastia are sown for seedlings in late February – early March. When planting seedlings in garden soil at the end of May, flowering begins in June (about a month later).
When choosing a landing date, it is necessary to focus on the climate of a particular region. As a southern plant, diastia loves warmth and sunshine. Therefore, in the northern regions, planting in the ground should be carried out later – in early June, while in more southern latitudes, the optimal time is mid-May.
According to the lunar calendar, in 2019, the best dates for sowing seeds of ornamental plants are: February 18, 20, 21. These days are favorable for both annuals and perennials. For annuals, suitable for February 20-28.
The best varieties of diastia with a photo
For decorative purposes, the following diastia varieties are most often grown:
- Ideas C lavender Pink.
A feature of this variety is the ability to bloom very young plants, barely reaching ten centimeters in height; while the height of an adult is 30 cm.The following varieties of this variety are known:
- A pink queen with pale pink inflorescences.
- Ruby Field, characterized by flowers with a dark center and pink petals.
The bushes of such a plant, even in a non-flowering state, look elegant due to the spectacular shape and arrangement of the leaves. The flowers are dark pink with red blotches. Such a flower can be grown on the balcony – it will bloom all summer.
Diastia is harsh
The height of the shoots reaches 50 cm. At the beginning of autumn, the greenery changes color to reddish-brown. This variety blooms with small pink flowers. This variety is recognized as one of the most cold-resistant, it can even be grown as a perennial plant.
Diassia is elegant
This variety has a very long flowering period and petal color varies across the entire pink spectrum.
This is a hybrid variety. Among all plant varieties, it has the most abundant flowering. The bushes are spherical, and the flowers are pink-lilac.
How to plant diastia
When planting diastia using seeds, it is recommended to adhere to the following algorithm:
- Seeds selected for planting should be placed in a container with crushed loose substrate.
- Slightly press each seed to wet soil, without sprinkling it with earth. As a substrate, both when sowing seeds and when picking, it is optimal to use a soil consisting of sand and garden soil, which has a slightly acidic reaction, not very nutritious.
Care after landing
The container in which the seeds are planted should be covered with foil to create the optimal temperature and humidity level.
To maintain the best temperature for seed germination (21-22 ° C), the container with seeds should be ventilated with the required frequency. After the emergence of seedlings, which occurs during the first 10 days, the film must be removed, and when the first pair of leaves appear, it must be cut into separate containers.
Throughout the entire period of growing seedlings, an average level of soil moisture should be maintained, avoiding either drying out or abundant soaking of it with water.
In order to form bushes, it is recommended to pinch the growing seedlings several times.
Landing in open ground and further care
Planting in open ground should be carried out after the soil in the garden has warmed up and there is no longer any risk of frost return. Before planting, the plants should be accustomed to open ground, to new conditions. For this purpose, containers with seedlings are exposed to the open air, starting from a short period, gradually increasing the duration of the “air baths”. It will be possible to plant young growth after the period of their stay in the fresh air reaches a day.
For planting seedlings, you should choose a place well-lit by the sun, not subject to moisture accumulation. The best option is along the wall of the building, directed to the south. Young plants should be planted 15 cm apart and watered abundantly after planting.
On hot days, they will require abundant watering, and after this procedure – loosening the soil around the bushes. Once a month, it is recommended to feed the diastia with fertilizers for flowering horticultural crops.
Growing a South African plant does not require special conditions and is not time consuming. It is enough to grow seedlings in time and plant them in open ground, maintain the required level of watering and regularly loosen the soil around the bushes.