Among the many garden flowers, Turkish carnation is especially popular and loved by flower growers. Why is she preferred? How did she deserve such recognition? Unpretentiousness, a variety of colors, long flowering - these are the main reasons that affect the choice of gardeners.
However, sometimes even professionals have a number of questions: how difficult is this business - growing a Turkish carnation from seeds, when to plant, how to grow seedlings correctly, what does this picky flower like and what does not like? What rules must be followed to decorate your flower garden with bright, inimitable flowers? In fact, the cultivation technique is not as complicated as it seems at first glance.
Brief characteristics of the plant
The Turkish carnation, or Dianthus barbatus, belongs to the clove family and enjoys a mild, temperate climate. Sometimes she is also called "bearded". This flower has a very close relative - the Chinese carnation. These plants are so similar that it is easy to confuse them.
Carnation is a biennial plant. In the first year after planting, a root system and small bushes are formed, consisting of several rosettes with leaves. From the second year, the plant forms peduncles and additional rosettes.
Carnation blooms, as a rule, in the second year. But some varieties are gaining color in the first year, however, in this case, flowering will be scarce. The duration of flowering can last up to 1.5-2 months, depending on the variety and compliance with the rules of agricultural technology.
Turkish carnation is grown by sowing seeds for seedlings or immediately in open ground. With proper care, it can be grown as a perennial flower. In one place the plant can grow up to 4-5 years without losing varietal characteristics.
On each peduncle, from 10 to 30 flowers bloom at the same time. Small in size, they form bright, lush umbrellas. The size of the inflorescences is on average up to 15 cm. Some varieties exude a delicate, delicate aroma.
The leaves of the flowers are long, narrow, and have a characteristic greenish-blue tint. The plant has an erect, strong stem, on which nodes are often located, from which leaves grow in pairs.
At the moment, about 500 species of carnations are known, which are replenished annually thanks to the work of domestic and foreign breeders.
Despite the large number of species, the classification of the Turkish carnation is quite simple. The carnation family is subdivided into low-growing (up to 20 cm high) and tall (over 40 cm high) flowers.
Low-growing varieties are often planted as ground cover, curb, balcony plants. Often they are planted when composing compositions in landscape design.
Tall plants have a very strong stem. This feature is of great importance when growing Turkish carnations, which is called "cut".
Often, carnations are divided into groups according to the complexity of the inflorescences: simple, semi-double, double. The palette of spherical inflorescences is amazing - from dazzling white to austere burgundy color. Typically, the color scheme is represented by two contrasting colors. But there are varieties in which flowers combine 3 or even 4 different shades.
Advice! Flower seeds must be purchased in specialized stores, which can give a guarantee for the conformity of varieties and are responsible for the quality of the seed.
Even some 20-30 years ago, the color range of colors was rather scarce - pink, white and burgundy. But in recent decades, the range of colors has expanded significantly. Among the traditional white-pink-raspberry tones, you can now find lilac, maroon, purple and even black tones.
Growing methods of carnation
Before planting a Turkish carnation with seeds, it is important to figure out how, in what time frame and by what method you can grow flowers.
Cloves are grown from seeds either by seedlings or by direct sowing directly into open ground. If almost all growers are familiar with the seedling method, then the seedless one has several nuances.
You can sow Turkish carnations in the spring, as soon as the weather is warm and the threat of frost has passed. In this case, seedlings appear quickly, the flowers are less sick and are more resistant to diseases and temperature drops. Considering that the process of picking and replanting to a flower bed is excluded, the seedlings do not experience stress and grow faster.
However, you can sow Turkish carnations with seeds in the fall when the first frosts hit. It is important to remember that flowers germinate very quickly, which means you need to completely exclude the possibility of their germination before the onset of winter.
Important! Not all varieties of cloves can be sown before winter - pay attention to the recommendations for sowing on the package.
What soils and places are preferred
Turkish carnation is an unpretentious plant that does not require strict conditions for growth and abundant flowering. These flowers look perfect in a flower bed, in a garden, in a flower garden in combination with other garden flowers, on a balcony, in containers and flowerpots.
The only thing this plant is critical to is illumination. The flower does not like too bright, sunny places. Therefore, it is advisable to plant Turkish carnations with seeds in partial shade or in areas that are illuminated in the morning and in the shade after lunch.
Flowers grow well in any region of Russia, tolerate frosts well and react relatively calmly to short-term heat.
Excess moisture is the main enemy of plants. In excessively moist soil, the root system of flowers is quickly affected by fungal diseases. As a result, the flowers may die. Therefore, for growing carnations, select areas where rain or melt water does not stagnate.
Pay attention to the groundwater as well. Their occurrence too close to the surface of the earth can negate all your efforts - the flowers will simply rot. When planning planting in such areas, you need to take care of drainage in advance, be sure to add sand to the soil and raise the flower beds by 30-40 cm.
Getting ready for landing
When growing Turkish carnations from seeds, it is important to properly prepare the soil before planting. Unlike other garden flowers, it is completely undemanding to the composition of the soil.
However, for lush flowering and the preservation of varietal characteristics, it is necessary to take into account that the carnation loves sandy loam, sandy, or fertile soils, with neutral acidity. If possible, add Turkish compost, humus or wood ash to the soil before planting clove seeds.
Most flower growers prefer to grow carnations the old fashioned way, using seedlings. You can sow seeds both in the soil mixture purchased at the store, and in the garden soil, diluting it with sand in a ratio of 2: 1.
Any containers for growing Turkish carnations from seeds at home are suitable. Sowing can be carried out both in separate cups and in bulk containers. Prepare a sunny, warm place for flowers right away. The optimum temperature for seed germination is + 20˚С.
Before planting, clove seeds can be soaked in water with the addition of a growth stimulant. However, they germinate very quickly - 7-10 days after sowing. Therefore, in principle, they do not need additional treatments.
When growing a Turkish carnation from seeds, as a rule, there are no particular difficulties. You can start sowing flowers in late February - early March. In warm regions, sowing work begins no earlier than late March - early April.
When determining the sowing time, keep in mind that transplanting flowers into open ground must be done before the onset of extreme heat.
A feature of growing Turkish carnations for seedlings is the fact that the plant does not like transplanting. Therefore, it is advisable to sow flowers in peat glasses or tablets in order to exclude the process of subsequent picking and to facilitate transplanting into open ground.
Attention! In the UK, this beautiful flower has the intriguing name "Sweet William" for the sweet taste of the inflorescences.
When sowing Turkish carnations for seedlings, you must perform the following steps:
- Lay a drainage layer on the bottom of the container with drainage holes, as usual, and fill it with prepared soil to 2/3 of its volume.
- Spread the clove seeds on the surface, with a minimum distance of 1.5 to 2 cm.
- Sprinkle the flower seeds lightly with soil or sand, a layer of 0.5-1 cm will be enough.
- Cover the container or containers with plastic wrap and place in a warm place. It is advisable that direct sunlight does not fall on the landings.
- Water the seedlings as needed, but no more than 2-3 times a week. It is advisable to provide the flowers with gentle watering - moisten the soil with a spray bottle.
- Subject to the rules of planting Turkish carnations for seedlings, the first, bright green loops appear after 7-10 days. After germination, the film must be removed from the container and the seedlings must be transferred to a lighter place.
- Water the flowers regularly. But keep in mind that carnations don't like overly moist soil.
- After 2-3 weeks, you can start picking seedlings. If you sowed flowers in separate containers, this stage of growing seedlings of Turkish carnations can be excluded. It is necessary to dive seedlings exclusively by transshipment, keeping a distance of 8-10 cm between them.
- In open ground, flower seedlings are transplanted in late May - early June. Before replanting a carnation, be sure to harden the plants. When transplanting, you must follow the recommended planting scheme.
- Immediately after transplanting, the flowers should be covered with foil or lutrasil until the rooting process takes place. Once it is clear that the plants have taken root, the shelter can be removed.
As you can see, there is nothing difficult in growing seedlings of Turkish carnations. It is only important to follow the recommendations, and soon your flower beds will be covered with a bright, floral, fragrant carpet.
Sowing seeds in open ground
In spring, you can plant Turkish carnations with seeds as soon as a stable temperature of + 15˚C + 18˚C is established outside. The optimal planting dates in central Russia are in mid to late April. In regions with a more severe climate, cloves can be sown no earlier than early to mid-May.
A few days before planting, the flower garden must be carefully dug up and moistened. It is not necessary to soak and process seed material before planting. Flowers easily tolerate short-term frosts. But wet carnation seeds can die when the temperature drops.
Make neat, even grooves 1-1.5 cm deep. The distance between the rows should be at least 15-20 cm. Pour warm water over the grooves. Spread the flower seeds in 1.5-3 cm increments. Lightly sprinkle the plantings with soil.
Before the seedlings emerge, the beds must be covered with foil. As soon as the seedlings of Turkish carnations grow up, the seedlings need to be thinned out. Excess seedlings are either removed or carefully transplanted to another location.
The ideal distance between plants is 15-25 cm, depending on the variety and height of the flowers. For carnations, it is important that the plantings are not thickened, otherwise the flowers will often suffer from fungal diseases.
Advice! Before growing Turkish carnations from seeds in the open field, take care of suitable neighbors - do not sow it next to moisture-loving flowers.
Before winter, carnation seeds are sown no earlier than the first autumn frosts hit. Early to mid-October is the most favorable period for planting operations. Sowing technology practically does not differ from planting carnations in spring. There is only one difference. Neither soil nor seed material can be watered or soaked. Dry seeds of Turkish carnation are sown in dry grooves, lightly sprinkled with soil and mulch planting.
If you wish, you can cover the future flower garden with spruce branches, hay or straw. In the spring, as soon as the snow melts, the covering material is removed. As in the first case, do not forget to thin out the planting.
Follow-up care of flowers
Turkish carnation is a non-capricious and hardy plant, therefore, caring for it comes down to carrying out simple and familiar events for all flower growers - correct, moderate watering, regular loosening, weeding and feeding.
Water the cloves in moderation and only as needed. From a constant excess of moisture, the weak root system of flowers is quickly infected with fungal diseases, and it will be almost impossible to save the plants. Therefore, there is no need to fill the flower beds.
The flower garden is weeded as often as possible - the less weed there is, the better and more luxuriant the carnation grows. Loosening as usual after rains or watering.
Advice! When growing Turkish terry cloves from seeds, remember that you cannot fertilize the plants with fresh manure - this will provoke an outbreak of fusarium.
Given the unpretentiousness of the carnation, the flowers do not need feeding. However, in some cases, you can still feed the plants:
- if you want to accelerate growth or provoke a lush, friendly flowering;
- if you are growing cut flowers;
- or on condition of depletion of the soil.
Superphosphates, urea (or urea), potassium sulfate are used to feed cloves. You can also use complex, mineral fertilizers. The feeding scheme is as follows:
- when plants reach a height of 10-12 cm - with urea or any other nitrogen-based fertilizer;
- during the budding period - use superphosphate or a complex of minerals;
- after flowering - potassium sulfate or superphosphate.
If desired, you can feed Turkish carnations grown from seeds, humus or compost. However, it should be borne in mind that during the flowering period it is undesirable to feed the flowers: you will provoke an active growth of the green mass, and the flowering will be scarce.
After the end of flowering, flower stalks with seed pods are recommended to be cut off so that the plant directs all its forces to the formation of new basal rosettes.
How to extend the life of plants
Home grown Turkish carnation is a biennial plant. However, it also reproduces by self-sowing, only growers note that the bushes of flowers are quite rare, bloom every year more and more poorly, and gradually lose varietal characteristics.
Attention! Once cut, the carnation retains its freshness for 2-3 weeks.
Therefore, most often the carnation is propagated using layers. In late summer or early autumn, plant stems are laid out on the ground, directing them from the center in the form of a radius. The top of the flowers is either cut off or left above the ground. Layers are carefully pinned to the ground with a V-shaped hook and sprinkled with a thin layer of soil, slightly compacted and watered.
In the spring, a large number of young, green rosettes will appear in this place. You can leave the bushes in the same place, or you can plant them in the garden or share them with friends or neighbors.
What or who can threaten plants
In general, cloves are highly resistant to many diseases. However, dampness and moist soil can provoke the occurrence of diseases such as fusarium (or root rot) and heterosporia. In both cases, the affected plants must be immediately removed from the site, and the soil must be disinfected with fungicides. It is advisable not to grow Turkish carnations in this place for at least 2-3 years.
From pests in flower beds with cloves, spider mites and aphids can be found, which suck out all the nutritious juices from the plant. If you find insects on flowers, take urgent measures to combat. You can use insecticides or resort to folk remedies.
In spring, young, tender shoots of carnations are attacked by rodents. After their invasion, the flowers are almost impossible to save. Therefore, take care of the carnation prematurely. Spread poison or rodent traps around the plants.
Important! Carnation is one of the few flowers that can be gifted to both women and men.
The author of the video will tell you about the rules for planting Turkish carnations for seedlings
Variegated, neat bushes of home-grown Turkish carnations will decorate every corner of your garden plot. The advantage of this unpretentious plant is its versatility. After all, it looks great in flower beds, it can be grown as border or balcony flowers. Carnation looks harmonious in combination with other garden flowers. With a minimum of effort, you will soon be able to enjoy the vibrant, inimitable colors that give your garden a cozy, unique look.