Not every plant can boast of flowering, which lasts from autumn to Christmas or even until spring. And erika can. How to grow this unique plant?
Erica is an evergreen shrub from the Heather family. This plant has very brittle twigs and delicate, small flowers of white, purple or lilac color. Erica is popular in gardens, not only because of its attractive appearance. It is unpretentious, so even beginners can easily grow it on their site.
The best a place for growing erica - in the sun or in small penumbra. The soil should be moderately wet. In dry weather, watering is necessary, especially during active shoot growth. Otherwise they will grow short, and there will be few buds.
Erika tolerates even heavy clay soils containing calcium.
A plant with a closed root system to a permanent place can be planted at any time of the year. The diameter of the holes for planting should be 1.5-2 times larger than the diameter of the pot. Peat or sand should be put on the bottom (depending on the mechanical composition of the soil on the site), some mineral fertilizers. All should be thoroughly mixed and plant the plant 2 cm deeper than in a pot. The plant needs to be watered abundantly and, when the water is absorbed, mulch.
Plant care is minimal. All that Erica needs is timely feeding and weeding, as well as mulching.
To feed plant should be 2-3 times per season. In the spring - ammonium nitrate or urea, and in the summer (in June and early July) - complex chlorine-free mineral fertilizers. Potassium chloride all heath extremely do not like. Potassium fertilizer is better to use potassium sulfate.
Erika needs very little phosphorus: a little superphosphate is applied during planting, after a while - complex fertilizers (5-7 g / m2).
Mulching helps to retain moisture in the soil, inhibits the growth of weeds and perfectly performs a decorative function. Chips, bark or sawdust can be used as mulch.
Erica blooms for a long time. Buds are painted in late September - early October and so go before winter. In a snowless winter, Erica is able to delight with beauty for a very long time, until the snow falls. And in the spring, as soon as he comes down, Erika is again among the first beauties!
Erica flowers continue to develop, and in April-May their beauty reaches its peak. Moreover, even closed buds help to create it - bright and not losing their charms.
Erica is famous for its long flowering
You can multiply Erica summer cutting shoots, but the easiest is dividing the bush fall or early spring.
The height of different varieties usually does not exceed 25 cm. Erika grows in breadth, the lower twigs lie on the soil and after some time take root. Bushes can form rather large turfs with small dense "pillow mats"
1-2 years after planting a bush, it can be carefully dug, divided into several parts and seated. The roots are very small, mocha, so they can not be kept on the air for a long time. If Erica grows several years without dividing, big blooming curtains will turn out. However, the plant after 3-5 years, it is desirable to plant, otherwise there will be "prolysin".
To get a more compact bush, after flowering in late spring - early summer, the tips of the shoots need to be cut a little. This will stimulate branching: there will be more young shoots, and accordingly, flowers.
Company for Erica
It may seem that Erica looks very modest - a kind of fluffy lilac "rug". To heighten the effect, you can "hook up" to it ground cover. Plants with bright green, yellow or variegated foliage (stonecrop, young, stone-sawing, coniferous, etc.) are particularly good in this regard.
Erica looks very beautiful in stony gardens, in groups with coniferous plants, various shrubs, as well as in combination with snowdrops and crocuses. Florists gladly include this plant in winter and Christmas compositions.
If you like this delicate and long-lasting plant, also plant ordinary heather related to Erica in a flower garden. And how to take care of him, read our article.