Delphinium: Blue flowers

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One of the most striking "blue-blooded" representatives in the plant world is the Garden Larkspur (Delphinium). The Greek name "Delphinium" is derived from the shape of the flower buds, which are said to resemble a dolphin. The German name "Delphinium" comes from the appearance of the flower and the clear, backward spur on the back of the flowers.

Delphinium and roses

Larkspur is a popular rose companion

The high pistils of the magnificent shrub make a graceful flowerbed background. As a companion plant with other plants such as roses, larkspur is wild-romantic. Delphinium is one of the stately and long-lived perennials. With its imposing flower candles, it is a must-have in every peasant and natural ornamental garden. From June to September, the tall, branched flower panicles show light to dark blue, white and purple flowers, depending on the variety. Delphinium belongs to the family Ranunculaceae and is poisonous.

Hybrid groups

Delphinium hybrid white

This Pacific hybrid blooms pure white

In addition to the wild form, the one-year field dandelion (Consolida), Delphinium is in a long garden tradition and now appears in over 400 different species and hybrid forms. The three main breeds include the more branched "Belladonna hybrids", the up to 2 meter high "Elatum hybrids" and the popular mid-high "Pacific hybrids". Belladonna hybrids have a slightly looser bloom structure. They are about a meter high and have a lifespan of three to four years. In winter frost protection is recommended.

Elatum hybrids are breeding forms of the High Delphinium (Delphinium elatum) and therefore the largest species. Nevertheless, they are stable and have lush, firm inflorescences with flowers from five inches in size. Elatum hybrids grow unbranched and are therefore very good as cut flowers. In the ornamental garden, especially the Pacific hybrids have established themselves, because they show particularly beautiful, large flowers. They are raised on average one and a half meters high and usually as a two-year-old. The low Pacific varieties are also suitable for planting in the bucket.

Location and care

Delphinium in the bucket

Small and compact species are also suitable for the K├╝belbepflanzung

Delphinium likes it sunny in the face and shady on the feet. A full sun garden bed with low planting is therefore ideal for Delphinium. The soil should be sandy-loamy, rich in humus and nutrients, the substrate slightly moist. In the summer larkspur must be watered regularly. During flowering, a liquid fertilizer is recommended every three weeks for the starvation sufferer. Larkspur likes a breezy, but protected location. Depending on the underlying breeding form, the plant grows up to two meters high. It grows strictly upright and is therefore easily prone to breakage. For safety's sake, tie the stems before flowering so that a stormy summer storm will not break your plants.

Delphinium pruning drawing

A vigorous pruning immediately after flowering gives the knight spur new strength

If you want to stimulate Larkspur to a second flowering, you should cut it back to the spring immediately after the early summer bloom two feet above the ground and bend the flower stalks up so that no water enters the interface. So the plant drives out again and you can look forward to a second flower in September. A small amount of fertilizer promotes the second sprouting. Tip: To dry the whole inflorescence, cut off the branches before opening the flowers and, vice versa, hang them dry in a dark place. Propagation and rejuvenation of the plant takes place about every five years, mainly through cuttings or division. Before planting, work some compost into the soil. Knight spurs are flat-rooters, so do not use the root ball too deep. Planted at a distance of about 60 centimeters.

Delphinium attracts mildew

Delphinium is very susceptible to mildew. Therefore, mildew-resistant varieties have now been bred. Preventive should be paid to regular watering. In addition, can be sprayed with Horsetail stock. In case of severe illness you should remove all affected parts of the plant and dispose of them with the household waste. If necessary, treat with chemical spray. Snails also love the Larkspur, especially during expulsion. Here helps a snail collar, evening gathering and slug pellets.When the leaves turn black, the larkspur is suffering from bacteriosis and must be completely removed.

Belladonna hybrids

"Piccolo" flowers in bright gentian blue. "Moerheimii" in pure white contrasts with the dark blue, very compact "Atlantis". "Ball Gown" looks very elegant with its bright blue, "V├Âlkerfrieden" is a long-standing strain in gentian blue.

Belladonna hybrid 'Ball Gown'

Belladonna hybrid 'Ball Gown'

Elatum hybrids

The mildew-resistant "eye candy" captivates with a two-colored blossom in light blue with old rose and a light eye. The sturdy "lance carrier" flowers gentian blue with white eye on long flower spikes, "polar foxes" is compact in pure white. "Overture" shows a royal game of mid-blue and pink with black eye. The trendsetters among the Elatum hybrids include the New Millennium varieties. They are characterized by long flower candles with dense, well-formed single flowers on sturdy stems and are frost hardy. Good varieties are "Dusky Maidens" (dark pink with brown eye), "Misty Mauves" (purple) and "Pagan Purples" (blue lilac).

Pacific hybrids

"Blue Bird" flowers medium blue with white eye, "Astolat" in lilac pink with dark eye. The established cultivar "Black Knight" has dark purple flowers with black eye and "Galahad" flowers in pure white.

Video Board: Delphinium - Larkspur - Growing Delphinium.

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