Gentian, the photo of which is often used to create cards, Is not only a spectacular, but also a useful plant. It is a low-growing grassy shrubs, which can be annual or perennial. In nature, this flower grows everywhere, is absent only in regions with a cold climate, where most of the year the soil is hidden under the snow. At home, it can be grown to decorate the garden or to create a live carpet, no less attractive small flowers will look in pots. Gentian is also known in folk medicine - the range of its use includes various diseases of the digestive tract and respiratory system.
What is this plant?
All gentian varieties belong to the gentian family. This is a large group of plants, which has more than 400 species. They do not grow tall - individual bushes can reach up to 150 cm, on average - up to 20-50 cm. Flowers grow in groups. Under natural conditions, living carpets form on plains and on mountain slopes, and at home you can create a similar picture yourself.
Gentian is a grassy plant for open ground that can be grown in virtually any environment.
Its main feature is bright flowers. They are small and may have a different color, from yellow to bright blue. On one bush a large number of inflorescences are formed, which appear and disappear during the warm season.
In the period of active flowering in the photo gentian looks bright and spectacular. Its varieties may differ from each other, but they are all grouped together due to similar botanical characteristics:
- is straight and strong root, small branches depart from it;
- main stem is straight and low;
- single flowers, one inflorescence forms on one shoot;
- after flowering, fruit-boxes are formed, in which the seeds for planting are then located.
Visually and in the photo gentian is different. Some varieties have a blue, blue or purple color, others may acquire yellow and other shades. The timing of flowering also depends on the gentian variety. There are early varieties that begin to bloom in the spring, medium and late - only in the summer or autumn.
Before choosing a variety, it is important to pay attention not only to its appearance, but also to climate requirements and flowering period.
Cultivation at home and care
In vivo, the gentian can grow in harsh conditions and adapt even to a cold climate, so taking care of it is simple. However, in nature, plants choose only those areas where they will grow most comfortably. When growing at home, you should take care of this yourself.
Gentian reproduces in two ways - vegetative and with the help of seeds. The second method is suitable for all varieties, while the seeds can be collected independently. They can ascend within 6-12 months. The process of growing gentian from seeds goes through several stages:
- stratification - seed freezing for 1-3 months at a temperature not exceeding 7 degrees;
- sowing can be done in the fall, while the seeds do not need to be placed deep in the ground, just sprinkle over the surface and slightly push;
- in spring sowing it is important to maintain constant humidity;
- first sprouts appear in 2-3 weeks.
Vegetative breeding method is not suitable for all varieties. Some of them can be propagated by grafting. To do this, the shoot with several leaves is separated and placed in water until the roots appear. Then it can be planted in open ground.
Recommendations for the care of
Care for the gentian depends on its variety, but some requirements are suitable for all its varieties:
- plants should be planted in areas that fall into direct sunlight( however, such a variety as the good-grained, prefers penumbra);
- abundant watering - it is necessary to ensure that the upper layers of the soil are constantly moistened, but the stagnation of the liquid should also not be allowed;
- to the composition of the soil flowers unpretentious, but grow best on soils with neutral acidity;
- on a soil that is not fertile enough to add mineral fertilizers monthly to flowering garden plants( half of the dose indicated on the package is sufficient).
There are both annual and perennial varieties of gentian. Even those species that grow for several years tolerate temperature fluctuations and are resistant to frost. They do not need to be pre-cooked for winter or sheltered from snow.
Gentian in traditional medicine
The healing properties of a gentian are due to its composition. It is used by healers against various diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, respiratory and other systems. As an active substance, this plant contains glycosides - biologically active components that are involved in various vital processes.
Gentian was used to treat a number of diseases:
- inflammatory processes of internal organs;
- as an antiparasitic agent;
- in diseases of the joints;
- for relieving allergies and many other symptoms.
Broths gentian proved to be effective for improving appetite and as a tonic. They are also taken for arthritis of various origins, for healing wounds and for normalizing digestion.
Contraindications to the use of
Despite the wide spectrum of action of gentian, it is not suitable for all patients. The herb can cause allergic reactions to any of its active ingredients. They are manifested by fever, deterioration of health, swelling of the mucous membranes and even the appearance of a rash on the skin. In addition, in case of serious violations of the internal organs, the decoction will not be as effective as pharmaceutical medicines.
Medicinal properties and contraindications of gentian should be discussed with your doctor. Like any other folk and drug methods, it should be used only if indicated and after a preliminary examination.
Varieties and Varieties
The family of gentian has more than 400 varieties and varieties. This diversity is due to the fact that flowers grow on different continents and are forced to adapt to different climatic conditions. For home cultivation, you can choose any of the varieties - it will be easy to provide comfortable color to the color.
Gentian ordinary( pulmonary)
Gentian pulmonary is a small plant that can reach up to 50-60 cm in height. It grows in open meadows and plains, tolerates frost well. Flowers solitary, bright blue or blue. The shrub needs abundant watering, in nature it often grows in marshland.
Gentian yellow is one of the largest varieties, it can grow up to 1.5 m. It differs by an unusual flowering - individual flowers in complex inflorescences. They are painted in bright yellow color, appear in the second half of summer. In the photo, yellow gentian looks bright and spectacular.
Cross-leaved gentian( cross) refers to the late varieties. It has a straight strong stalk up to 50 cm in length, densely covered with green leaves. The flowering period begins in the second half or at the end of summer. Cross-shaped gentian can be recognized by the characteristic color of the petals - they have a turquoise, purple or purple hue.
Gentian Daurian is also one of the medium varieties that blooms in the second half of summer. Unlike other varieties, its stem is not strong enough, but can reach 50 cm or more. Tall shrubs can have shoots that are located on the ground. The leaves are pale green. Flowers solitary, large, have a bright blue color.
Black Granted is a late variety. Its stems are tall, straight, can grow up to 80 cm with proper care and maintenance. In nature, it begins to bloom in late summer, and the period of its flowering affects the beginning of September. The species has an unusual form of petals. They are pointed, may have a blue color with a violet shade or be completely white.
Large-leaved Gentian is a small plant, its largest representatives grow to 70 cm. The name is explained by unusual leaves. They are narrow and located at the base of the plant and in the internodes, can have a length of up to 20 cm each. Single inflorescences are elongated and have a characteristic shape. Petals reach 2 cm in length, inflorescences are almost not disclosed. The main stem is durable, additional shoots can be soft and fall to the ground. Flowering occurs in summer.
Stemless Gentian( Koch) in nature grows in mountainous regions. Its stem practically does not rise above the ground and can reach a maximum of 15 cm. The variety is among the earliest. Blooms profusely, begins in early May and may last until mid-June. Inflorescences are small, have a rich blue tint. This variety is well suited for creating a living carpet on a house plot.
Semipartite Gentian is one of the most unpretentious varieties. It adapts to any climatic conditions, easily tolerates frosts. Inflorescences have a blue color with a slight mauve shade. The plant begins to bloom in late June.
Spring gentian belongs to the early varieties. It does not reach large sizes - the average shrub grows only 10-15 cm. It starts blooming early, the first inflorescences appear already in the middle or at the end of spring, when the air temperature stops falling at night. The flowers are small, painted in blue or blue, may have a purple tint.
Gentian is a huge number of varieties and varieties distributed around the globe. In folk medicine, it is collected and harvested to treat a huge number of diseases, and also used as a tonic and immunostimulating agent. However, the appearance of the gentian at the time of flowering allows you to use it to decorate flowerbeds, house plots and grow the house in pots. Adults annual or perennial shrubs bloom profusely, forming a living carpet with flowers of different shades.