Alyssum - planting and caring for a fragrant flower

Alyssum - planting and caring for a fragrant flower

Alyssum (Alýssum) is a representative of the genus of ornamental plants belonging to the extensive Cabbage family. The numerous genus Burachok includes about two hundred species that are widespread in a number of European countries, in North Africa and Asia. About forty plant species grow in the post-Soviet space.

Features of growing in the garden

Alyssum, very well known in decorative floriculture, is widely used in landscape design. Annual species are characterized by a longer flowering period, while perennial species are characterized by good resistance to low-temperature conditions. Ornamental culture is actively used in landscaping in the Mediterranean region, but it is well adapted for cultivation in the middle zone of our country.

In areas with warm climatic conditions, alissum is grown as a perennial, blooming for a very long time - until late autumn

Alyssum in a tub or garden flowerpot is a frost-resistant summer and autumn flowering perennial, easy to care for.

Alyssum is perfect for use in home gardening, it is distinguished by many flowers and an elegant, very delicate aroma

Fans of creating flower arrangements on the loggia very often use such a decorative culture as a beautiful and unpretentious border design for other plants.

Alyssum is actively grown on the balcony

What climate is the plant suitable for

Planting an ornamental crop in a harsh northern climate is carried out only by seedling with sowing of seed in early February. In regions with warm weather conditions, an abundant flowering plant can develop for many years, while it blooms almost constantly.

From the moment of seed germination to the first flowering, as a rule, it takes one and a half to two months, and the most favorable for the culture is the temperature regime not lower than 15-18 ° С.

Color palette

In the wild, there are plant varieties that form lilac and white flowers, but for garden landscaping and growing on balconies, loggias and terraces, flower growers often prefer more decorative types:

  • white, including Little Dorrit, Big Gem, Weiss Riesen, Primavera Princess and Snow Crystals;
  • pink or purple, including Salmon and Royal Carpet varieties;
  • pale lilac, purple and lilac, Easter Bonnet Deep Pink, Wonderland Blue, Variegatum and Oriental Night;
  • yellow, Easter Bonnet Pastel Mixture and Compactum Gold Dust varieties.

Especially popular are the multi-colored varieties, for example, Paletta, which combines several original colors

Brief description and photos of popular varieties

Now there are many varieties of alyssum, which differ in terms of flowering, height and size of the ground part, and color of the flower. They all belong to several main varieties. There are more than a hundred popular types. In addition, work is regularly carried out by domestic and foreign breeders to obtain new products.

Alissum rocky (Al. Saxatile)

The height of the stem part ranges from 28–30 cm, and the foliage is preserved even in the cold winter period. Paniculate flowers. Early flowering, but short-lived (April - May).

Low-growing variety Compactum with a height of the aboveground part of no more than 17-18 cm

  • Medium-sized variety Plenum with a stem height of just over a quarter of a meter, with double flowers of golden yellow color.
  • Dudley Neville cultivar with a maximum height of 15-30 cm, with yellowish-brown flowers.
  • The Gold Placer variety is a highly branched ornamental plant with a height of the aboveground part of no more than a quarter of a meter, with dense and racemose inflorescences.

Alissum sea (Al. Maritium)

In the conditions of central Russia, it is grown in an annual culture. The height of the above-ground part does not exceed a quarter of a meter with a shoot length of no more than 40 cm. The stem part of the plant forms compact and undersized rosettes.

Flowering occurs from May until frost

  • Bentham variety, Weiss Riesen variety, with a maximum height of 30–35 cm, with large white flowers.
  • Variety Shneeshturm Bentham varieties with a maximum height of 22–25 cm with white and large flowers.
  • Variety Violet Haze belongs to the miniature and long-flowering species.

Purple haze forms small flowers and lanceolate foliage on shoots up to 15 cm long

  • The Ester bonnet variety is distinguished by its unpretentiousness, cold resistance and drought resistance, with a height of 20-25 cm, with snow-white or lilac-pinkish flowers.

Ampel Alyssum

It belongs to the most decorative species, forming highly branching and long shoots that look spectacular in hanging pots. The inflorescences form a large and fragrant blooming ball.

  • The Snow / White Carpet variety is a miniature annual with a very bright and pronounced honey aroma.

Flowering is observed from July to October

  • Alyssum White Princess Snow blooms all summer long, tolerates low-temperature conditions well, has uniform growth and is easy to shape.

Alissum Gmelin or Mountain (Al. Gmelinii)

Perennial and frost-resistant ornamental plant. The branches are creeping and ascending. Leaves with dense pubescence. The racemose type of inflorescences bloom within a couple of months, with the beginning of flowering in the last decade of spring.

Blooms from May for a month and a half, then at the end of August

  • The Honey Dessert variety is a highly branched perennial with a height of 23–25 cm, with hemispherical bushes, elongated gray-felt leaves, and small yellow flowers.
  • Variety Golden Wave - forms highly branched perennial hemispherical bushes up to 30-40 cm in diameter, with yellow flowers. Flowering occurs in the spring for a month and a half, and sometimes it is secondary - in the last decade of August.

Planting methods

Sowing seed or planting seedlings is carried out in fertile soil with organic fertilizers applied in advance. For cultivation, the sunniest areas are allocated, without stagnant water, with a neutral or slightly alkaline reaction of the soil in the flower garden.

Sowing in open ground

  1. In contrast to greenhouse cultivation, sowing of seed material in open ground flower beds is carried out not earlier than May, when the upper 8–10 cm of soil warms up well and the threat of damage to crops by return spring frosts has passed. It is allowed to sow seed in November. Such podzimny sowing allows the seeds to go through the natural process of stratification, as well as to get powerful and healthy shoots in the spring.
  2. The seeds are buried approximately 0.5 cm in the ground. With deeper planting, the sprouts do not have enough strength to break through the soil layer.
  3. To get faster and more friendly shoots, the crops after watering should be covered with ordinary plastic wrap.
  4. Thickened plantings can cause the development of various fungal diseases, so it is better to sow seeds at a distance of at least a quarter of a meter from each other.
  5. If necessary, seedlings are thinned out or already grown plants are planted.
  6. Alyssum, grown from seeds, blooms about a month and a half after the emergence of mass shoots.

Growing seedlings

Growing seedlings should be done no earlier than mid-March.

  1. For sowing, you need to prepare a nutritious and light soil with a slightly acidic medium (pH 5.5–6.2). The seedling method is used to obtain early flowering, and is also popular in regions with insufficiently favorable climates.

    Hardened seedlings should be planted with a distance of 30–35 cm from each other, but the optimal values ​​depend on the species and varietal characteristics of the plant.

  2. Crops should be provided with good lighting and greenhouse conditions, as well as a temperature regime of 10-15ºC.
  3. You also need to take care of moderate humidification and ventilation mode.
  4. After the first true leaf appears on the seedlings, you need to feed the plants with complex fertilizer.
  5. You can dive flower seedlings if you have two or three real leaves.

Care in the garden from the moment of planting in the open ground until autumn

The cultivation and annual care of garden alyssum is very simple and consists in watering ornamental crops, regularly loosening the soil, periodically removing all weeds, as well as pruning and standard feeding.

How to care during growth and flowering

At the stage of active growth processes and the development of the aboveground part of the decorative culture, competent care should be provided. Watering is carried out with settled water when 40–45 mm of the upper soil layer dries out. Loosening is recommended after irrigation measures. Mulch allows for less watering.

You can use an autowatering system

Top dressing is carried out at the stage of active growth of green mass by decorative culture. Perennial alissums are fed with nitrogen fertilizers such as Agricola-7 and urea at the rate of a tablespoon of each product per bucket of settled clean water. Before mass flowering, the plant is fed with complex fertilizer. Annual varieties require more frequent feeding.

Full-fledged growth processes and abundant long flowering of alyssum require correct and timely pruning. In the spring, dried leaves, as well as diseased or weakened branches, are removed from perennials.

After the summer flowering, pruning is repeated, and all plant branches are shortened by 50–80 cm, which will stimulate the re-flowering of some Alyssum varieties.

Post-flowering care: how to collect seeds

After flowering, it is necessary to properly prepare the ornamental plant for winter, and, if necessary, collect seed material from the bushes. Alyssum is a frost-resistant flower, therefore, it does not need to create a special shelter for the winter. In the northern regions, it is allowed to slightly mulch the soil near the plants with spruce branches or fallen leaves.

Pre-winter pruning of alyssum is not recommended

You should start collecting seeds in the last decade of September or early October. For this purpose, in dry and calm weather, inflorescences are collected and frayed. The collected alyssum seeds are dried and stored in a labeled cloth bag until planting.

What problems do gardeners have with growing

Alyssum belongs to ornamental crops that are perfect for growing even by inexperienced and novice growers. Some possible problems:

  • ornamental culture does not bloom abundantly enough - violations in the regime of fertilizing or watering, low level of sun illumination;
  • the aboveground part of the plant turns yellow - low aeration of the soil, lack of sufficient irrigation measures;
  • a garden flower grows poorly or withers - root decay as a result of waterlogging, improper feeding regime.

Due to its unpretentiousness, problems with such a plant occur quite rarely, but only under the condition of strict adherence to the rules of care.

Diseases and pests: a table of signs and control measures

Alyssum is susceptible to certain diseases and pests. To choose the correct and most effective scheme of control and treatment, you should correctly determine the type of damaging factor.

Video: alyssum from sowing to flowering

Useful reviews

In terms of horticultural culture, the ornamental plant alyssum became known relatively recently, but its popularity is growing every year. The reason for the demand for such a beautiful flower is represented by the simplicity and extreme ease of care, the strong and bright honey aroma that this plant exudes.

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Alyssum (beetroot) has dense, semi-woody shoots, they are straight, ascending or creeping. The flower forms a dense subshrub from 10 cm to a meter in height and up to 1.5 in width. The leaves are thick, petiolate, oblong, oval, covered with a silvery downy. Reaches 15-40 cm, the buds are formed from four petals arranged in a criss-cross pattern, combined into inflorescences.

Flowers are represented by small clusters of snow-white, golden, pink, lilac, yellow colors. Blossom in May, bloom until late autumn, excellent honey plants. The honey aroma of certain alissum varieties spreads over several meters.

The fruit is a pod with flat seeds, which remain viable for three years. Superficial rhizome with adventitious roots.

Forming a fluffy carpet, alyssum is used in the landscape design of parks, squares, flower beds, rockeries, rabatok. They are also decorated with hanging pots, pots, boxes.

Alyssum contains alkaloids, organic acids, flavonoids and has medicinal properties. Use its decoction for colds, infusion for facial care, dried parts in aromatherapy.


Features of alissum

The height of a low-growing ground cover plant alyssum can vary from 0.15 to 0.4 m. Strongly branching stems are semi-lignified at the base. Small leaf plates obovate or oblong have pubescence on the surface. Small racemose inflorescences consist of small flowers that can be colored yellow, pink, purple, white, lilac or red. Flowering begins in May and ends in late autumn. The fruit is a pod, inside which there are seeds, they remain viable for 3 years. This plant is a good honey plant, which has a spicy honey smell that attracts bees.

You should know that alyssum and sea lobularia are different plants that are closest relatives. However, they are so similar to each other that gardeners, for simplicity, refer them to the same genus. These plants differ in color of flowers: in lobularia they are lilac, white or pink, and in alissum they are yellow or fawn.

Alyssum is cultivated by flower growers both as a perennial and as an annual. It is grown in flower beds, in flower beds and flowerpots. It is often used to fill areas of spring bulbous plants that are empty after flowering.


Popular varieties

Some types of alyssum bloom in shades of pink and purple. Alyssum rock flowers are predominantly yellow in color. Even the names of the varieties contain references to golden shades of lush bloom.

Alyssum rocky Golden wave

The bushes of alyssum rocky Golden Wave are quite consistent with their name. Many bright golden-yellow inflorescences cover lush bushes with a diameter of about 40 cm and form a wavy pillow. The height of the alyssum of this variety can reach no more than 25 cm. When grown by seedlings, the Golden Wave alissum blooms a little later than a month after being placed in a flower bed. When favorable conditions are created, flowering lasts almost all summer. Silvery foliage is no less decorative than flowers.

Alyssum rocky Gold placer

Gardeners refer to the Gold Scattering variety as ground cover. Lush bushes about 15-20 cm high are covered with yellow flowers. A highly branched plant quickly grows over the entire space. The gold placer blooms from May to the end of June. With the creation of optimal conditions and timely pruning, you can get a secondary flowering closer to autumn.

Alyssum rocky Gold of the Incas

Perennial, covered with many yellow fragrant flowers, has small inflorescences. Strongly branched bushes with bluish pubescent small leaves are used as a ground cover plant.

Alyssum rocky Mountain gold

A low-growing perennial of the Mountain Gold variety forms a bright carpet in a flower bed. The bushes of a flowering plant with lodging shoots are covered with small lush inflorescences until frost.

Alyssum rocky Aphrodite

One of the few rock alyssum varieties with purple, red and pink flowers, it is grown as an annual crop. The plant blooms from June to October, and even longer in some regions. The short, branchy plant has many simple flowers that make up lush clusters.

Alyssum rocky yellow

One of the shortest varieties of rock alyssum, the height of the bushes of which rarely reaches more than 10 cm. A branchy plant with recumbent and ascending shoots develops well in sunny areas with stony sour soil.


Types and varieties

Alyssum rocky (Alyssum saxatile)

Strongly branched perennial up to 30 cm tall, growing in hemispherical bushes up to 40 cm in diameter. Its branched stems are lignified at the base. Inversely ovate or oblong, gray-gray, felt-like leaves, remaining on the bush even in winter, form dense rosettes. Small yellow flowers with notched petals are collected in dense, short brushes. Blooms in spring for about forty days, possibly re-blooming in late summer. Varieties:

  • Citrinum - lemon yellow alyssum of short stature
  • Compactum - a fragrant variety only 18 cm tall with small flowers
  • Golden wave - yellow alyssum up to 20 cm high, blooming only at the age of two years
  • The plenum - golden alissum, terry, bush height up to 30 cm.

In the photo: Alyssum saxatile

Alyssum sea (Alyssum maritimum)

He is also lobularia sea - perennial, but only in warm climates, a plant from 8 to 40 cm high, abundantly overgrown with branches creeping on the ground, forming fluffy bushes with small, fleshy, silvery oval leaves with fine pubescence. The flowers are also medium-sized, with a honey aroma, collected in a brush. In nature, there are varieties of a white or lilac shade, but many varieties have been bred in culture with pink, purple and red flowers that bloom from spring to autumn. Varieties:

  • Tiny Tim - alyssum white, dwarf, eight centimeters tall, blooming so profusely that neither stems nor leaves are visible. Wonderful ground cover plant
  • Easter Bonnet Deep Rose - Alyssum pink intense shade, blooms profusely
  • Princess in Purple - ampelous alyssum, which looks great in hanging pots or flowerpots, with spreading shoots up to 35 cm long and fragrant light lilac flowers
  • Violet Konigin - violet alyssum, compact, densely branched, 10-15 cm high.

In the photo: Alyssum maritimum

Alyssum gmelinii (Alyssum gmelinii)

Or mountain alissum (alyssum montanum) - This is a frost-resistant perennial 10-20 cm high with ascending and creeping stems and leaves densely pubescent with star-shaped hairs, which makes them appear gray. Yellow flowers, collected in a cluster, bloom in April or May.

In addition to the above, there are such representatives of the Alyssum genus, such as Lena, winding, Savran, rough, cup, Pyrenean, creeping and silver.

In the photo: Mountain Alyssum (alyssum montanum)

In recent years, breeders, given the popularity of alissum, have bred wonderful varieties, among which are especially popular:

  • Palette - miniature bushes no more than ten centimeters of the richest palette of colors - white, pink, red, raspberry, lilac and even brown. In specialized stores, a mixture of Alyssum Paulette seeds of different colors is sold, they are planted so to get a motley flower bed or lawn, covered with a multi-colored lush carpet
  • Big Jam - large-flowered alissum, whose flowers are one and a half times larger than usual, the color range is also wide - lavender, purple, white and light lilac. The plant is up to 35 cm high, has increased resistance to drought and cold - flowering continues even at -3ºC
  • Gold placer - grows as a spherical bush, the leaves are narrow, the stems almost lie on the ground, the bright yellow flowers are collected in small dense brushes. Most of all, this variety is suitable for rocky slides and for decorating retaining walls.
  • White carpet - differs in long and abundant flowering of white inflorescences. Most often used as a ground cover plant
  • Pink rug - densely branched bushes up to 12 cm high with small gray pubescent leaves and medium-sized fragrant flowers of pink-lilac color, collected in racemose inflorescences - most often this species is used as an ampelous plant for balconies or as a frame for flower beds and flower beds.


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