Viola: growing from seeds, types and varieties
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Viola, or pansies, is a long-known, but still popular hybrid of large-flowered European violets.
The ancient Greeks believed that Zeus created the first viola to console his beloved Io, who was turned into a cow by his jealous wife Hero.
Modern viola cultivars are diverse, unpretentious, tolerate heat well and are able to bloom throughout the summer. Some perennial varieties of viola withstand even thirty-degree frosts under the shelter of pine spruce branches.
From our article you will learn:
- how to grow viola seedlings;
- how to transplant seedlings into open ground;
- how to care for the plant during the season.
Planting and caring for the viola
- Landing: perennial seeds are sown in the ground before winter, annuals are grown in a seedling way: they sow seeds for seedlings in March, and seedlings are planted in the ground in May. If the viola is grown in a two-year culture, then the seeds are sown on the school garden in June or July, and in late August or early September the seedlings are transplanted to a permanent place.
- Bloom: depending on the species, variety and method of cultivation from early spring to late autumn.
- Lighting: bright sunlight.
- The soil: rich, moist, well-drained.
- Watering: in the season with the usual amount of precipitation, the viola can not be watered, but in drought watering should be regular: the soil on the site is maintained in a loose and slightly moist state.
- Top dressing: once a month with full mineral fertilizer.
- Reproduction: seeds and green cuttings.
- Pests: clover moths, spider mites, rootworm nematodes and violet mother-of-pearl.
- Diseases: pitium, smut, leaf spot, gray rot, black leg, powdery mildew and variegation virus.
Read more about growing viola below.
Plant viola (lat.Viola) belongs to the genus of the Violet family, whose representatives grow mainly in mountainous regions and places with a temperate climate of the Northern Hemisphere and, according to various sources, number from four hundred to seven hundred species. Some of the viols are endemic to the South American Andes, some are found in the subtropics of Brazil, the tropics of South Africa, Australia, the Sandwich Islands and New Zealand. Viola is popularly known as pansies.
The violet-viola has been popular since time immemorial - about two and a half millennia ago, the ancient peoples inhabiting the territory of Europe woven the flower into festive garlands and wreaths, decorating the premises for celebrations with them. The fragrant violet was first introduced into the culture, followed by the mountain violet. The first mention of breeding works for breeding violet hybrids dates back to 1683. The acquaintance of Europeans with the Viola Wittrock species, which is a hybrid of yellow viola, Altai viola and tricolor viola, took place in the 19th century. Today, garden viola is one of the most popular plants, with hundreds of varieties and varieties.
Viola is represented by perennial, biennial and annual herbaceous plants, reaching a height of 15 to 30 cm. The root system of the viola is fibrous, the main shoot is erect. Simple or pinnately dissected viola leaves, equipped with stipules, are either collected in a basal rosette, or grow alternately. The flowers of the viola are axillary, single, on long peduncles, up to 7 cm in diameter, the upper petals are with marigolds, the lower ones are larger, with a saccular formation at the base - a spur. The colors and shapes of the viols are striking in their variety: monochromatic, two-three-colored, spotted, striped, with one spot, with wavy or even edges of the petals, simple or double ...
Viola blooms very profusely, depending on the time of planting, either from mid-March to the end of May, or from August to frost, although there are hybrids that can bloom throughout the summer or twice a season. The fruit of the viola is a box with seeds that remain viable for up to two years.
Viola is winter-hardy and shade-tolerant, although far from the sun's rays it does not bloom so abundantly, and the flowers become smaller. The soil for the viola is preferable loamy, fertile, moist, since growing on dry sandy soils also leads to the fact that the flowers of the viola become small.
Growing viola from seeds
You can sow viola seeds directly into the open ground, but we'd better tell you how to grow viola seedlings, since the seedling method of seed propagation is usually more reliable than seedless propagation. If you plan to see flowering this year, you should start growing viola seedlings from the end of February.
Before sowing viola, buy a soil substrate for violets at a flower shop, and soak the seed material for a day in a solution of Epin or Zircon. Then place the seeds in the grooves made in the soil and sprinkle them on top with the substrate rubbed between the palms, water, cover the container with glass or transparent film and keep in a room with a temperature of about 15 ºC.
In the photo: Viola flowering in a flower bed
Viola seedlings from seeds will begin to hatch in a week and a half, and as soon as the viola has sprouted, the glass must be removed, and the container with seedlings should be placed in a cool place, where the air temperature is not higher than 10 ºC, under bright diffused light protected from direct sunlight. Viola care at this stage consists in the timely moistening of the substrate and the introduction of a complex mineral fertilizer in the form of a solution twice a month.
There are two opinions about how many times and when to dive a viola.
Some growers insist that the viola seedlings are dived twice: the first time, when the seedlings have a pair of true leaves, and the second time the viola is dived after another 2-3 weeks according to the 6x6 scheme.
But others, no less experienced experts believe that the second dive is, in fact, planting the viola in open ground, so you yourself will have to decide whether you need to dive the viola a second time. In the end, the viola can be planted on the site in an already flowering state - it takes root perfectly. Viola from seeds blooms in late spring or early summer.
In the photo: Dense thickets of viola
When to plant
Viola is planted in open ground, depending on the local climate, in April or May. Determine for viola a sunny area with an optimal soil composition and add 0.2 parts of not too finely crushed coal to one part of the ground so that its fractions perform, in addition to all, a drainage function, and the same amount of humus or dry bird droppings. Viola will grow well in soil of this composition: humus, turf soil, peat and sand in a ratio of 2: 2: 2: 1.
Do not plant the viola in a low-lying area where the groundwater is close, so that no water stagnation occurs in the roots of the viola.
How to plant
If you are concerned about the question of how to plant viola correctly, let me reassure you: planting viola flowers does not contain any secrets. The seedlings are placed in pre-prepared holes at a distance of 10-15 cm between specimens, sprinkled with earth, compact the soil around the bushes and watered after planting. Please note that growing viola flowers involves plant transplanting every three years, combined with dividing the bushes, otherwise the perennial viola grows strongly, and the flowers become small, which makes the plant lose its decorative effect. The best varieties of viola can be easily propagated by cuttings.
In the photo: Pansies
Growing viola requires maintaining the soil on the site in a moist and loose state, since the root system of the plant is superficial - it is located at a depth of only 15-20 cm.Water the area with viola as needed, but in a normal summer there will be enough natural moisture - rains. and only if the summer is sultry, you will have to mess with watering. It is also necessary to remove weeds from the site as they appear and to pick off wilted flowers with seed pods in time so that the viola bloom does not lose its intensity.
In addition, viola flower care provides for monthly feeding with ammonium nitrate or superphosphate at the rate of 25-30 g per square meter.
In the photo: White and blue viols
Pests and diseases
As you can see, planting a viola and caring for it is very simple, so do not neglect the rules for growing a viola, follow them meticulously, otherwise you will have to face difficulties that could have been avoided with proper care. We are talking about diseases and pests that occur when the rules of agricultural technology are violated.
Viola most often suffers from powdery mildew, which appears at first in the form of a gray or white bloom on the leaves, buds and stems. This happens if fertilizing is done only with nitrogen fertilizers or in a dry, sunny summer with abundant morning dew. In case of disease with powdery mildew, plants are sprayed with soda ash and soap or Fundazol, or ground sulfur. If the disease persists, processing can be repeated in two weeks.
In addition, if the temperature, humidity and soil conditions established by agricultural technology are violated, troubles may arise with diseases such as gray rot or black leg. Eliminate the causes of the disease until it has covered all the plants, remove the affected specimens, and spill the soil after them with Fundazol.
In the photo: Large viola flower
Sometimes viola suffers from spotting, from which its leaves dry, and the plant itself weakens. It is necessary to destroy the diseased specimens, and it is best to burn them so that the infection does not spread throughout the garden. For prophylaxis, healthy plants are sprayed with Bordeaux liquid 2-3 times with an interval of two weeks between sessions.
Among insects, caterpillars of clover scoop and violet mother-of-pearl, eating up the leaves of the plant, are dangerous for viola. Destroy them by spraying viola with chlorophos or tobacco infusion.
Viola after flowering
How and when to collect seeds
Seeds are collected from dead plants in August-September. After the flowers wither, small boxes with seeds remain in their place.
A sign that the seeds are ready to be harvested is when the capsule turns up.
Seeds are removed from the cut boxes, dried in the room and sent to storage in the refrigerator. If the boxes with seeds are not removed, then abundant self-seeding can occur, and you will see fresh spontaneous seedlings either in the fall or next spring, but if they are thinned and planted in time, then you can grow viola on the site without labor costs for sowing and planting work.
In the photo: How viola blooms in the garden
Viola in winter
The current varieties of perennial violets, if covered with spruce branches or dry foliage, can withstand even severe frosts - down to -30 ºC. And annual viols are disposed of after wilting.
Types and varieties
The most common type of viola in our flower beds is Vittrock's viola, or pansies. It is a perennial 20-30 cm high, grown in culture as a biennial plant, with alternate oval leaves with blunt teeth at the edges and single large flowers from 4 to 10 cm in diameter of all kinds of colors and shapes.
Florists divide varieties of garden viola into several categories: according to the timing and quality of flowering, the size of flowers, their color, shape and level of winter hardiness.
If the criterion is the size of the flowers and their simultaneous number on the bush during flowering, then according to these characteristics, the varieties of Viola Vittrok are divided into groups of large-flowered (grandiflora) and multi-flowered (multiflora) varieties.
If the difference is based on color, then the varieties are conventionally divided into monochromatic, two-colored and spotted, but it should be understood that there is no clear border between these groups, and the same variety can be ranked, for example, as both spotted and bicolored.
In the photo: Viola wittrockiana
One-color varieties of Wittrock's viola:
- Viola White - a sprawling bush up to 25 cm in diameter and up to 20 cm in height with green leaves, white with barely noticeable greenness and yellowness, fragrant flowers on long peduncles. This variety blooms from mid-April to early August and from late September to October. Winters well under cover;
- Blue Boy - a bush up to 25 cm tall with bluish leaves, lilac-blue corrugated flowers up to 6 cm in diameter, with dark lilac strokes at the base of the petals, the upper petals are bent back. Up to 19 flowers can open on the bush at the same time. Blooms from April to August and September-October, winters well under cover;
- Rua de Negri - compact bushes up to 23 cm high, leaves with a bluish bloom, flowers up to 5 cm in diameter with rounded black velvet petals wavy at the edges, slightly bent back, at the base of the lower petal there is a bright yellow eye. Opens simultaneously on a bush up to 14 flowers. Blooms from April to August and September to October. Winters well under cover;
- Viola red - erect stems up to 20 cm high, flowers up to 7 cm in diameter are red with a very dark eye at the base of the petals.
In the photo: Viola wittrockiana
Two-color varieties of Wittrock's viola:
- Jupiter - a compact variety up to 16 cm high with dark green leaves and flowers up to 5 cm in diameter with rounded white-violet flowers, the upper petals of which, white at the base, are bent back, and the lower ones have a velvety texture and a deep purple hue. Up to 20 flowers open at once. Winters well;
- Lord Beaconsfield - bushes up to 25 cm high, glaucous leaves. Flowers up to 5.5 cm in diameter. The upper petals are white-blue with ink strokes at the base, the lower ones are deep purple with an uneven lilac rim along the edges. Up to 30 flowers bloom on the bush at the same time. Winters well;
- Saint Knud - compact bushes up to 20 cm in height with green leaves and flowers up to 5 cm in diameter, in which the upper petals are light yellowish-orange, and the lower ones, bright orange with a red base, protrude strongly forward. Up to 19 flowers can be opened on the bush at the same time.
In the photo: Viola wittrockiana
- Shalom Purim - a much improved form of the viola rococo variety, the same viola is terry, but with an incredibly strong corrugation of the petals of very large flowers - a third larger than the standard. It goes on sale as a mixture of seeds of various colors. Unlike the parental species, it prefers light partial shade to the sun - then the corrugation of the leaves is more pronounced;
- hybrid F1 Tiger eyes - a novelty of incredible colors: frequent thin brown strokes on the yellow background of the petals, flower diameter up to 3 cm. Can be grown both in flower beds and in pots. The hybrid is distinguished by early, abundant flowering and a pleasant aroma;
- hybrid F1 "Cassis" - a compact plant with purple petals with a thin white border around the edges, blooms very abundantly, has a high winter hardiness.
In the photo: Viola cornuta, or ampelous viola
Viola horned (Viola cornuta), or ampelous viola
In addition to the Vittrock viola, the culture often grows horned viola, or ampelous viola - a perennial plant with a height of 15 to 25 cm with a creeping branchy rhizome, which, growing, forms a carpet. Its stems are triangular, the leaves are oblong, coarsely toothed, up to 6 cm long, the stipules are pinnately incised. Numerous flowers 3-5 cm in diameter, with a horn-shaped spur, painted in lilac-violet tones with a small yellow eye. Blooms from May to September.Hardy, but it is advisable to cover it for the winter. Growing ampelous viola is not much different from growing garden viola. The development of new varieties of horned viola was mainly carried out by English breeders:
- Arkwright Ruby - large-flowered variety with intensely red petals with a yellow eye and dark spots at the base of the lower petals;
- Balmont Blue - variety with blue flowers and climbing shoots, grows well in hanging baskets and in balcony containers;
- Pearl Duet - the flowers of this variety have two upper petals of a burgundy color, and the three lower ones are dark pink with darker strokes at the base.
In the photo: Fragrant Viola (Viola odorata)
Fragrant Viola (Viola odorata)
Another species that grows well in culture and has many garden forms is fragrant viola - a perennial with a thick rhizome and almost round leaves up to 9 cm long and up to 8 cm wide, forming a rosette. The flowers are quite large, fragrant, purple in color. Blooms in May for three weeks, sometimes re-blooms in autumn. Varieties:
- Rosina - very fragrant pink flowers, darkening closer to the base, their upper petals are bent, the side ones are slightly extended forward - the flower looks like a flying bird;
- Charlotte - viola with large dark purple flowers;
- King - viola with very fragrant purple flowers.
In the photo: Viola papilionacea, or nodular viola (Viola cucullata)
Viola moth, or nodule (Viola papilionacea = Viola cucullata)
Popular in culture and viola moth, or nodule, 15-20 cm high with heart-shaped or kidney-shaped, serrated leaves along the edge and large, single purple flowers, in which the upper petal is white with a purple stripe, and the center is yellowish-green, almost white. Blooms from April to June. Varieties:
- Freckles - white flowers with dense purple specks, which become larger in cool spring. Blooms in spring to early summer. One of the most unpretentious varieties of viola in the culture;
- Royal Robe - a miniature viola with very fragrant flowers, the petals of which are bent back, and at the base of each petal there are yellow and black strokes. The petals themselves are violet-blue to purple in color;
- Red Giant - very large red-violet flowers on long peduncles. Long-flowering variety.
In addition to the listed widely used types of viola, graceful, mountain, yellow, marsh, Altai, hairy, Labrador, single-flowered, variegated, sandy, somkhet, dog, sister, foot-shaped, amazing, hill and Selkirka viola could perfectly grow in garden culture. In the meantime, they are used by breeders for the most part to develop new varieties and hybrids of garden viola.
- Read the topic on Wikipedia
- Features and other plants of the Violet family
- List of all species on The Plant List
- More information on World Flora Online
- Information about Garden Plants
- Information on Biennial Plants
- Information on Perennial Plants
- Information about Herbaceous plants
- Information about Annual Plants
Sections: Garden plants Biennials Perennials Herbaceous Flowering Annuals Weeds on Violets
Viola (Viola) is considered one of the brightest representatives of the genus Violet, which mainly grow in the highlands of northern latitudes, where a temperate calm climate prevails. In total, there are about 400-700 varieties of these plants. Some of them can be found in the Andes mountains in South America, others in tropical Brazilian forests, Australia or New Zealand. Viola is also popularly known as pansies.
The history of this flower goes back to the distant past, when the first settlers in Europe learned to use it as decorative elements in wreaths and garlands that were used to dress up premises for the holidays. The very first representative of the viola, which was bred by the breeders, is the fragrant violet, which was replaced by the mountain violet.
The cultivation of violets in gardens as a cultivated home plant began in the 17th century. It was at this time that breeding work began to create hybrid varieties. In the 19th century, Viola Wittrock, which was a hybrid of several species of this group of plants, gained its distribution in Europe. Today, viola is grown on many household plots and has a huge number of varieties that differ in color and structure.
Viola varieties and varieties
First of all, you need to decide on the choice of the variety, since the viola can vary very much in the shape and color of the buds. In addition, different varieties tolerate growth conditions differently, and they also begin to bloom at different times.
The most common and favorite are the following varieties:
- Variety group "Trimardo". It includes such varieties as "Adonis" with turquoise flowers "Cardinal" with dark red buds, as well as "Morenkening" - one of the most mysterious varieties with black buds.
- "Hemalis" is a winter-hardy variety group that includes varieties with sky-blue, dark red or white flowers, a wide variety of shades will allow you to choose the best flower bed decorations.
- The "Swiss" varieties are distinguished by their large bud size. This group includes varieties, the diameter of flowers in which may be equal to 8 cm, they will become a personal decoration for a flower bed.
- The Viola aromatic variety has also become widespread: one of its advantages is the magnificent aroma of flowers.
- In addition to the usual varieties, you can also purchase seeds for growing the latest achievement of breeders: ampelous viola. It is suitable not only for flower beds and alpine slides, such a plant will become an ornament for balconies and window sills, as it can be placed in an ordinary flower pot. Flowers are collected in a voluminous white ball, this gives the plant an unusual and very beautiful appearance.
If you choose the Hungarian violet, it will bloom throughout the entire summer season, other varieties are classified as early-flowered or late-flowered. A huge variety of varieties will allow each grower to choose a plant according to his own taste.
Features of planting and care
Before you start growing violets, you need to study it varietal characteristics and growing technique. Viola is a winter-hardy and shade-tolerant plant. However, you should pay attention to the choice of place for a flower bed. Lack of sunlight will affect the flowering time. Hot, open sunlight will speed up the flowering period and make it short. The flower stalk with a bud will stretch out, and the size of the flower will become small. The best place to grow violets would be a place open to sunlight in the morning and evening and with shade in the daytime sun.
Violet needs protection from drafts. Planting a plant on an alpine slide will help you get an excellent result. The optimum temperature for growing flowers is 15 ° C.
For correct development, growth and reproduction of viola, it needs fertile soil. The flower grows well on loamy and sandy loam soil. In this case, the plant needs to provide good drainage. The absence of excess moisture will preserve the root system of the flower, which is located superficially in the violet, from damage by rot and disease. When arranging flower beds, the soil is dug up, sand and peat are added. The composition is thoroughly mixed.
Viola responds well to various types of fertilizers and dressings. A flower grower can use purchased mineral mixtures and feed... Organic fertilizers can be used. The only thing that the viola does not tolerate is feeding with fresh manure. The plant dies.
Watering flowers requires periodic and moderate. The flower is able to withstand drought, but this will affect flowering, therefore it is necessary to water the flowerbed as the top layer of the soil dries out.
Violet loves loosening, so it provides its root system with oxygen. It is not worth loosening deeply, the roots are easy to damage.
Caring for feverfew in the garden
Caring for feverfew is very simple. This perennial is perfect for those who do not always have time to take care of garden flowers. After the flowers get stronger after transplanting, they will not be afraid of any weeds, because they will be able to suppress their growth. In this regard, it will be necessary to weed a flower bed with pyrethrum only at the very beginning of the growing season, while in order to reduce the number of weeding, the soil surface can be covered with a layer of mulch (organic matter). In order for the plant to grow well and develop correctly, it needs systematic watering. After the flowers are watered, it is recommended to loosen the surface of the soil, this will help to avoid the formation of a dense crust on it.
Both organic matter and mineral fertilizers are used for feeding. It is impossible to overfeed pyrethrum with nitrogen, since in this case it will intensively increase the green mass, and the flowering will become scarce. The flower responds well to rotted manure.
The shoots of the bushes are tall, but not very strong, so they may need a garter. When the first flowering ends, it is recommended to remove all peduncles, without waiting for the start of seed formation. In this case, in the last weeks of the summer period, feverfew will begin to bloom again. Without a transplant, such flowers can be grown in the same place for no longer than four years. During this time, they will grow strongly, because of which the flowering will become scarce. Therefore, every 4 years, such flowers are recommended to be transplanted to a new place. The transplanted bushes are divided if necessary.
Diseases and pests
Feverfew is distinguished by a fairly high resistance to various diseases and pests. However, in rare cases, he can get sick. For example, this flower sometimes suffers from fusarium or gray rot. A fungal disease such as gray rot damages those parts of the bush that are located above the ground, as a result, a fluffy bloom of gray color appears on their surface, their deformation occurs, and as a result the bush dies. Affected plants are removed from the soil and destroyed, and the area on which they were grown must be spilled with a solution of any fungicide. Fusarium is also an infectious fungal disease. Its pathogens enter the plant through the roots, while the vascular system of the flower is primarily affected. An infected bush cannot be cured; therefore, it must be removed from the ground and destroyed, which will avoid further spread of the infection. The soil, as well as the remaining bushes, should be treated with a fungicide, which contains copper.
Such a plant can be severely damaged by thrips, slugs, and also aphids. Slugs are very fond of feverfew foliage, and you have to collect them by hand. To quickly get rid of slugs, you can attract birds or hedgehogs to your site. Thrips often settle on feverfews. It is impossible to get rid of them, therefore, it is recommended to remove the bush inhabited by such pests from the soil and destroy, and the surface of the site and the remaining plants must be sprayed with a systemic insecticide. If aphids have settled on such a flower, then it is also recommended to get rid of such a plant, however, if you wish, you can try to cure it, for this the bush is treated with an insecticide, for example: Aktara, Biotlin, Aktellik or another means of a similar action. As a rule, it is not possible to destroy all aphids the first time, therefore, in order to finally get rid of such pests, you will need to process the plant at least 2 or 3 times.
When the plant fades in autumn, its part, located above the ground, must be cut flush with the surface of the site. Before wintering, the surface of the site should be covered with a layer of mulch (peat) or covered with spruce branches. If the plants are covered for the winter, then they will not be afraid of any frosts. After the onset of the spring period, spruce branches are removed from the site, and the mulch is raked off, this will allow young shoots to quickly break through the soil.
Planting viola: where pansies grow and bloom best
It is important to choose the right place for planting viols. These flowers bloom better in a cool, but with an abundance of light. Therefore, the best place for viols is in bright sunny areas, but with obligatory shading from midday rays. For example, viols grow well under young fruit trees with a thin crown, which protects them from the drying summer heat. Or on bright western and eastern balconies. On the southern balconies, the viola can also show itself in all its glory, but, unfortunately, only until June-July, that is, before the onset of heat.
There are several ways to breed.
- The first way reproduction of the described plant involves the use of seeds, which are collected in August or September. After removing them from the boxes, they are dried and subjected to stratification (being in conditions of high humidity at a temperature of + 1– + 5 ° C).
- Second option provides for the division of the bush. The optimal time for this procedure is spring (before the beginning of the growing season). This solution is preferable for old violets that are dug up and neatly divided into several parts.
- The third method reproduction of garden pansies is cuttings, primarily relevant for rare forms of the plant in question. It involves the use of apical shoots with 2-3 nodes, separated from late spring to mid-summer. Viola cuttings can be rooted both in special containers for seedlings, and in the open field.
See below for how to grow flowers from seeds.