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Verbena in nature is a herbaceous perennial plant. But as an ornamental plant, it is cultivated, as a rule, for one year.
It is annual, as it is not able to withstand winter frosts. You can save the plant for next year by moving it indoors before the frost sets in.
Verbena has a lot of creeping and bushy varieties. This plant is able to perfectly decorate borders, a flower bed or a flower gardener. A greenhouse is a great place to grow verbena. It can also be planted in balcony pots.
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Planting verbena in the garden
This plant is usually grown from seed. In early autumn, you can also do cuttings, but this method is rarely used by gardeners. If you want to sow seeds directly into an open area, go for Hard and Buenos Aires Verbena varieties.
This can be done at the end of spring, when the average temperature is set within +18 ... +20 degrees. Before planting, other types of verbena must be germinated in boxes or pots under a thin layer of soil.
Seeds sprout well in early spring. You can plant verbena in January or February, but seed germination at this time is much slower, and they bloom simultaneously with the plants that were planted in March.
It is recommended to plant verbena in sand or perlite purified with boiling water. Seed growth can be significantly accelerated if the box with them is placed in a warm place. When sprouts appear, the box should be moved to a bright and cooler place.
Until the seeds germinate, it is necessary to cover the container with glass, which will make it possible to create greenhouse conditions in it. Under favorable circumstances, the seeds will sprout in 6-8 days. However, it is also likely that you will have to wait about a month for this.
In early summer, as soon as the weather is warm, the plants should be transplanted to a new location. When planting bush varieties of verbena on the site, leave a distance of 20 centimeters between them, and about 35 centimeters between the creeping ones.
Each bush is planted in a separate hole. Before planting in the hole, add 500 ml of water and wait a while until some of it goes into the soil. In the slurry remaining in the hole, you need to lower the roots of the plant. When you do this, all that remains is to add earth and press it down around the bush.
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Despite the fact that verbena is distinguished by its endurance, it still needs certain conditions. This plant should be planted in a sunny, well-lit place. Loose, calcareous soil with good drainage should prevail on the site.
After a few weeks of transplanting, the verbena should be fed. For top dressing, it is recommended to use fertilizers containing large amounts of nitrogen.
After this, feeding must be administered twice a month. Some varieties of verbena require iron-containing fertilizers.
When the plant is in bloom, do not overuse nitrogen fertilizers. If this recommendation is neglected, verbena can produce extremely dense foliage, which will affect the quantity and quality of flowers.
Low bush varieties of this plant branch well on their own. Ampel species require a pinching procedure over the top of the fifth full-fledged leaf.
The optimum temperature for growing verbena is +16 ... +25 degrees. But even if the temperature has small deviations, this will not affect the plant in any way, since it can grow normally even when the air temperature drops to +5 ... +10 degrees.
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Verbena needs moderate but regular watering. Although it is a drought tolerant plant, try to prevent the soil from drying out during the cool season.
In the heat, it is necessary to water the verbena more often, but at the same time reduce the irrigation dose. Restricting watering in winter can help the plant bloom next season (for indoor-grown vervain).
During this period, it is necessary to maintain the temperature at least +8 degrees. The main conditions for verbena wintering are good lighting and dry air.
A feature of verbena is long and abundant flowering, the period of which begins in summer and ends only with the onset of autumn frosts.
At the tops of the peduncles, dense balls-inflorescences are formed with many small fragrant flowers of the most varied colors.
Faded inflorescences should be trimmed in order to ensure a long flowering period and preserve the decorative appearance of the plants.