A kind of plants like saxifrage (Saxifraga) is directly related to the family Saxifragaceae. It unites more than 400 species of herbaceous plants, among which most are perennials, and the rest are one or biennial. She prefers to grow in nature in places with a harsh climate. So, this plant can be found in the subarctic regions, in the Alps, in the east of Greenland, as well as in the western and eastern parts of the Himalayas. The saxifrage prefers to settle on stony embankments, in crevices of rocks, on masonry walls, and is also found in lowland meadows.
The roots are poorly developed due to the soil in the places where the plant prefers to grow. The root system is almost lobular, but there are few small roots. The foliage of almost all plant species of this genus is either located directly at the very surface of the soil, or collected in root dense rosettes. Her peduncles are long and solitary. They come out of the center of the rosette, which consists of leaves. The racemose inflorescences are few-flowered. The flowers have 5 petals and are most often radially symmetrical. It blooms for a very long time, about 3 or 4 weeks.
Other characteristics of saxifrage differ significantly in different species. So, in height, the bush can reach both 2 centimeters and all 100 centimeters. Leaves are both petiolate and long-petiolate. Their edges are smooth or significantly jagged. Flowers can be painted in different colors. They are also very small in size and nondescript in appearance, and there are also very large, showy flowers with a rich color. The petals are both narrow-lanceolate and rounded.
Saxifrage at home
It can grow both in partial shade and in bright diffused lighting. Avoid direct sunlight. Otherwise, the leaves lose their juiciness, becoming lethargic, and the color fades. For placement indoors, it is recommended to select the windows located in the western or eastern part of the room. It is possible to grow on a north-facing window, but variegated forms in this case lose their spectacular color.
During active growth, it needs a temperature of 20 to 25 degrees. In the event that it becomes very hot in the room, then the flower should be taken out into the street, for example, in the garden or on the balcony. In the absence of this opportunity, they try to ventilate the room as often as possible.
In winter, there is a dormant period, and the saxifrage at this time needs a temperature of 12 to 15 degrees.
How to water
Watering should be year-round, as the top layer of the substrate dries up. If the room is cold, then watering should be more scarce, since the evaporation of water in this case slows down. Stagnation of water in the soil should not be allowed in any case, as this negatively affects the roots, and can also contribute to the appearance of rot.
Watered exclusively with settled soft water, which should be at room temperature.
It is undemanding to air humidity and feels great in apartment conditions, but only if a cool wintering is provided. If the plant hibernates in a warm place, then it should be rearranged away from heating devices and systematic spraying of the foliage should be carried out using soft lukewarm water. It is also necessary to spray on hot days in summer.
Suitable soil should be low or medium nutritious, air and water permeable, with neutral acidity. Only the saxifrage cotyledon needs acidic soil. A suitable dredge for other species is very simple to compose. To do this, you need to mix 1 part of leafy soil and 2 parts of clay-sod land with ½ part of coarse sand. Also, in the resulting mixture, you need to add a fourth or fifth of the total volume of small expanded clay or gravel.
For planting saxifrage you need low wide pots. It is possible to plant several outlets in one container, since the roots are small and do not take up much space. Be sure to have a good drainage layer to help prevent stagnation of liquid in the soil.
Reacts negatively to large amounts of fertilizers in the soil. It is recommended to feed only 1 time per season. To do this, use a universal fertilizer for indoor plants. It is undesirable to use fertilizers that contain nitrogen, as they provoke active foliage growth.
They are transplanted when necessary, as a rule, if the bush grows strongly and does not fit into the pot.
Can be propagated by seeds as well as by daughter rosettes. In this case, the sockets can be immediately planted in a permanent pot.
Pests and diseases
Spider mites, mealybugs, and thrips can settle. In case of infection, treatment with insecticides (fitoverm, actellik) is recommended.
If you take care of the plant incorrectly, then a variety of rot can occur. So, for example, this can happen due to cold air with high humidity or as a result of overflow. In case of decay of the root system, the remaining intact stem can be re-rooted. To do this, first it must be cleaned of rotten mass and treated with fungicides.
Let's get acquainted with the saxifrage plant.
Most often, saxifrage is used for growing on rockeries, as well as alpine slides in the park and in the garden. However, there are small species that can be grown at home. So, these types include all of the following.
Wicker saxifraga (Saxifraga stolonifera)
It is also called the sprouting saxifrage (Saxifraga sarmentosa) - this species is the most popular and is often grown as an ampelous plant. In nature, it can be found in Japan, and also in China. This perennial plant has a dense leaf rosette. Leaflets are long-petiolate, slightly pubescent. The bush in diameter, as well as in height, can reach from 20 to 50 centimeters. The leaf has a rounded shape, a heart-shaped base and a broad-crested edge. Its diameter is approximately 5-7 centimeters. The front side is dark green with prominent pale stripes of veins, and the back side is painted in burgundy green. Peduncles, petioles, and also thin long shoots-stolons, which are air layers-"mustaches", at the tips of which are located small daughter rosettes, are painted in the same color shade. If the saxifrage grows like an ampelous plant, then its stolons in length can be from 60 to 100 centimeters. It should be borne in mind that each individual daughter socket is capable of having its own stolons.
This plant blooms from May to August. Small flowers are of little or no decorative value, but they have a unique calyx that has no symmetry at all. So, 3 small petals located on top are ovoid, and their tip is narrowed. They are painted pink, and also small burgundy spots are randomly located on their surface. Below there are 2 larger petals, painted white. They often vary in size.
This species has several varieties. Most popular:
- Harvest Moon ("Harvest Moon") - the color of the leaves is pale, green-yellow.
- Tricolor ("Tricolor") - this variety is variegated, and on each leaf there is a rather wide whitish-pink edge.
Saxifrage cotyledon (Saxifraga cotyledon)
In nature, you can meet in the Alps. It is the most beautiful of all saxifrage species (both during flowering and at normal times). Its very dense leaf rosette is very similar to a succulent plant such as Echeveria. Thick green leaves are petiolate and have a ligulate or obovate shape. In length they reach almost 10 centimeters, and in width - about 2 centimeters. The finely serrated edges are covered with a whitish thick limescale, which is produced by the leaf itself. There is also a small limescale on the surface of the glossy leaf. Flowering begins in May or June. At this time, a lush, highly branched peduncle grows from the middle of the outlet, on which a bunch of pyramidal shapes is held, which has a huge number of star-shaped flowers. In size, this bunch is larger than the leaf outlet itself, and several times. Its approximate dimensions: length - 60 centimeters, and width - 40 centimeters. These flowers are painted in a regular star-shaped form in a pinkish-white color. However, now there are varieties with a different color of flowers.
Arends' saxifrage (Saxifraga arendsii)
This hybrid species is quite complex and has a large number of different varieties. Lobed, glossy leaves are deeply dissected and almost petiolate. They are collected in small leaf rosettes. Over time, the plant grows, resulting in the formation of very dense thickets, somewhat similar to moss. In this regard, this species received another name among the people, namely, "mossy saxifrage". On small-flowered inflorescences there are several flowers of a rather large size, with a regular shape. The petals are wide-oval in shape and can be colored yellow, white, pinkish, as well as in different shades of purple and red. The color of the flowers depends on the variety.
This plant, which prefers to grow in areas with a fairly harsh climate, does well in indoor conditions. However, for its successful cultivation, you still need to pay attention to some points.
For those who want to grow a beautiful indoor saxifrage, proper watering and planting should be followed. These are the basic requirements on which the health of the bush depends.
Care after purchase
When shopping for saxifrage at the store, choose pre-made, rooted rosettes.
You can provide the necessary drainage by simply pouring a layer of ordinary expanded clay on the bottom of the pot.
This plant is ideal for hanging planters. The only condition is that it must be isolated from batteries and heaters.
When transplanting a plant, you must not forget about good drainage. Stagnant water contributes to decay of the root system.
Indoor saxifrage flowers should be placed in rooms with windows facing north or west. Too much bright light will negatively affect hardwood slabs.
Cut off the saxifrage only when it has faded. Cut off the old outlet and new leaves will grow in its place. To make the plant look aesthetically pleasing, do not forget to remove dry branches.
This flower is watered only with soft water, which has settled well. From March to October, irrigate regularly (as soon as the soil surface dries out). In winter, more moderate watering is provided, only the earthen lump should not dry out.
Saxifrage can be planted all year round. Several sockets are placed in a small wide pot at the same time. This will create a beautiful bush.
Caring for a saxifrage at home includes not only planting a plant, but also the choice of soil. The land should be taken rich in humus. It is such a substrate that will allow the culture to develop correctly.
The saxifrage is very fond of limestone. To provide this beauty with ideal conditions, add crushed limestone to the ground, or plant a saxifrage on the slope of a rock garden.
If you plan to plant the saxifrage outdoors, it is best to do so in the spring. Do not plant plants too close to each other. The most optimal distance between them is twenty centimeters.
Saxifrage refers more to mountain plants, as its name suggests. It prefers to grow between stones with a minimum of nutrients and poor watering, but is a bright spot for any landscape design with stones. In addition, some varieties are used not only to give beautiful compositions, in medicine, medications necessary for many are made from all parts of the plant.
Saxifrage (Saxifraga Caespitosa)
The natural habitats of the species are Eurasia, Central America, mountainous areas of tropical Africa, it is under such natural conditions that the bole can develop perfectly. Saxifrage can be both an annual and a perennial; now there are more than 400 species of this plant. The stems bloom from May to August.
They differ among themselves in terms of their external characteristics:
- come in different sizes
- can be grown both outdoors and in pots
Leaves can also be a distinctive feature, in some species they are very small, and some are of medium size. There is a saxifrage, the foliage of which only grows up to 5 cm, some species can grow up to 70 cm in height. In this case, the bushes of the plant will completely cover the soil with a radius of up to 12 cm.
The leaves of the saxifrage are collected in a basal rosette, usually green in color. Sometimes the deciduous part can have a bluish tint, it arises from the ability of the plant to accumulate lime in itself. Each leaf has several peduncles, on which flowers of different colors with five petals open over time.
Flowers usually have delicate shades: pink, white, purple, yellow, some varieties are distinguished by red flowers. Some species have paniculate inflorescences, are cold-resistant and differ from their relatives by a complex root system. After flowering, in place of each flower, a seed box with a large number of small grains is formed. When sowing, not all will sprout, many will die from excess moisture.
Indoor varieties are most often ampelous, grow well and develop on northern windows, but they still need light. This flower is not whimsical in care and planting, it can be grown even by a novice florist both indoors and in the garden. The saxifrage will do well without moisture, it will grow even if it is not regularly fertilized.
Planting and care in the open field, description of varieties and species, reproduction
An unusual representative of the plant world is the saxifrage. Its delicate small flowers look spectacular among stones and crevices. High vitality, unpretentiousness, durability makes the culture popular among gardeners. Knowing all the nuances and subtleties of planting and caring for a saxifrage, you can easily decorate any area with these amazing flowers.
General description of saxifrage
The saxifrage is presented in the form of a herbaceous perennial, the height of which ranges from 5 to 70 cm. The bushes are decorated with leaves of various shapes. It is appreciated by gardeners for the foliage of a dark green color with a blue, silver, bluish tint.
The flowers are medium-sized, five-petalled, regular star-shaped. There are solitary, but often collected in small inflorescences in the form of a panicle. Pleases with the long flowering of white, yellow, pink flowers.
The growing season begins in April, and in the second decade of May the plant begins to bloom, taking the form of a bright carpet. She wears this outfit for about a month.
Popular varieties and varieties
The saxifrage family has 200 species. Of these, the following varieties are the most popular.
- Soddy saxifrage. The flower is a dense turf of rosettes with dissected leaves. Flowering is short, only 3-4 weeks, which is observed in June.
Gardeners prefer the following varieties:
- Arends' saxifrage. The flower pleases with a bright green color during the season. Its foliage forms a continuous carpet, the height of which is up to 15 cm. It fascinates with its flowering in late spring. Among the common varieties of Anders:
- sleeping Beauty
- Red Cap
- Peter Pan
- Snow carpet
- Floral Carpet
- Saxifrage paniculata. The flower is valued for its gray leaves, covered with white cloves of limescale along the edge, as well as beautiful rosettes 5-6 cm in diameter. Pleases with flowering in June, July. The varieties that this species boasts:
- Balcana minima.
- Wicker saxifrage. It has round, hairy green leaves with light stripes. Forms a rosette, from which many layering departs, which form new rosettes at the ends.
- Saxifrage is round-leaved. Bushes have petiolate leaves in the shape of a circle. In the first days of summer, white flowers are seen on arrows up to 40 cm long, the petals of which are decorated with purple dots.
- Saxifrage mossy. The bush is distinguished by creeping shoots covered with oblong green leaves. The edges of the leaf plate are cut into thin strips, which makes the dense pillow look like a thicket of moss. The plant is decorated with flowers of a yellow-white color up to 6 cm in length.
- Saxifrage shadow. A bush up to 20 cm in height has whole leaves of green in the form of an oval, which are covered with purple stains. In July, paniculate inflorescences begin to bloom, which are decorated with small white flowers. Their core is purple in color. The most common forms of shady saxifrage will be:
- Elliotis Variet
- Purple robe.
These varieties and varieties of saxifrage can improve the appearance of any area.
The specifics of growing flowers
In order for the saxifrage to attract attention with its high decorativeness, it is necessary to properly plant. This procedure will not cause difficulties even for novice gardeners. The secret to successfully growing saxifrage is to create conditions as close as possible to its natural habitat.
Time and place
Saxifrage is not a capricious culture, but when determining the landing site, it is important to take into account its natural preferences. When placing a flower garden, you need to know that the flower loves shady places where it is protected from the scorching sun. Ideally, trees and shrubs will grow nearby.
An important factor in the cultivation of saxifrage is good drainage. Stagnant water can be detrimental to flowers, so you need to consider in advance where the perennial will grow. A good solution would be to plant a flower in crevices between stones or on a slope, while additionally watering during the dry season.
Saxifrage seedlings are advised to be planted in June, when the air and soil will have a temperature of 18-20 degrees.
Saxifrage takes root without problems on soils of medium fertility. But since it needs limestone, it is better to enrich the soil with crushed limestone. The ideal soil for a crop should be equipped with substances such as gravel, clay, sand, peat, humus. Also, soil preparation includes the addition of superphosphates along with organic matter. It is recommended to lay out a rock garden near the bushes, using stones, this will protect the roots from the sun and retain moisture.
Before planting, dig up the soil, loosen it, remove large stones. The day before planting seedlings, moderate watering of the future flower bed.
To plant a plant, you need to adhere to the following procedure:
- Make holes at a distance of 10 cm.
- Place the seedlings in the center of the hole.
- Fill in the soil around the stem and tamp a little.
- Drizzle over the edge of the hole.
Will delight the flowering saxifrage after a year. In one place, a ground cover plant can grow for 5-6 years, then it needs to be transplanted.
In order for flowers to attract attention with their decorativeness, you need to surround them with care.
Soil and fertilizers
Feed plants only with formulations containing minerals. Fertilize for the first time after 7 days, then 2 times a month. Nutrients should be added to the water when watering. At the time of flowering and in winter, stop feeding.
Watering and humidity
Saxifrage requires moderately moist soil. When the soil dries up, the flower will die, therefore, in dry weather, it is recommended to spray the leaves. This will give the saxifrage a spectacular look.
The saxifrage is characterized by resistance to frost, but young immature specimens of rare varieties are best sheltered for the winter. To do this, in the fall, before the first frosts, plantings must be covered using dry foliage or spruce branches.
Disease and pest control
The saxifrage demonstrates resistance to diseases and pests. But with illiterate care, mistakes in watering and fertilizing, the crop can become vulnerable to infections and parasites.
You can dilute the culture with seeds, dividing the bush and cuttings:
- Growing from seeds. Sow in spring using special seedling boxes. Seed material should not be covered, but lightly sprinkled with sand. Cover with glass and build a miniature greenhouse. Seedlings are formed in 2-3 weeks. A month later, the first real leaf will be formed. In open soil, sprouts can be planted when the outlet appears, this mainly happens next spring.
- By dividing the bush. To do this, choose a powerful bush and disconnect additional sockets and shoots with roots and foliage, which are planted in the shade and irrigate and loosen the soil around them throughout the summer season. In the spring, after wintering, plant the plants in a permanent place.
- Propagation by cuttings. There are crop species that form long lateral shoots in June. They need to be cut off and planted in loose, moist soil, shaded from above. During the summer period, the cuttings will take root and form medium-sized rosettes, which are covered for the winter using foliage.
With any method of reproduction, saxifrage bloom is observed in the 2nd year after planting in a permanent place.
Possible growing difficulties
The only difficulty that gardeners have when breeding saxifrage is the loss of decorativeness due to overgrowth. Since the regrown shoots are deprived of their leaves, which are located closer to the ground and the soil can be seen through them. Therefore, caring for the culture, attention must be paid to the renewal of the bushes and their division using cuttings. Also, so that the plant does not lose decorativeness, faded flowers need to be broken off along with the peduncle at the base of the turf.
Saxifrage in landscape design
The plant occupies an honorable place in landscape design because of its spectacular appearance, adaptability to any climatic conditions, the ability to be adjacent to various flowering crops, and short trees.
The saxifrage at the time of flowering will revive the rockery and add zest to the rock garden. The attractiveness of the culture is increased due to its good compatibility with many garden plants. A picturesque flower garden can be obtained by planting irises, muscari, phlox next to the saxifrage. Tall species are best used as curbs.
Observing simple rules for planting and caring, you can find an approach to this amazing flower. And he, feeling cared for, will begin to actively grow and develop, delighting with magnificent flowering.
Application in landscape design
Saxifrage is very popular with landscape designers. With its help, real masterpieces are created. The best places to plant saxifrage are alpine slides and rockeries.
The saxifrage is capable of perfectly fill empty spaces in gardens... The plant can instantly transform an empty rocky place into a chic floral carpet. Also, these plants can decorate curbs.
The flower goes well with other plants of the same height. The best neighbors for saxifrage in a flower bed can be phlox, iris or tiarella.