genus of rhizomatous perennial herbaceous plants, which has numerous species, characterized by showy red, blue, white, pink or violet flowers, which bloom from spring to autumn, depending on the species. The rhizomes are very small (2-3 cm in diameter) and must be buried at a depth equal to their diameter, it is advisable to create small groups of rhizomes, to obtain patches of color once the flowers bloom. The flower is large compared to the size of the rhizome, in the shape of a daisy or poppy, with large petals of bright color, dark center and showy stamens; the leaves are similar to parsley, light green, deeply divided, and dry completely after flowering. They are widespread in temperate zones on all continents, widely used in borders and as cut flowers. This plant has been imported since ancient times from the Near East and is still widespread in the Mediterranean and Asia Minor.
The etymology is not certain. Some think that the name derives from the Greek бnemos (wind) with reference to the mountain places in which it grows spontaneously or perhaps due to its weakness and ease in being spoiled.
The flower was already known to the Egyptians for whom it was a symbol of illness.
Even today in the language of flowers it is a messenger of sadness and loneliness.
In Italy, some varieties that are closely related to them grow spontaneously in shady mountain areas: A. ranuncoloides, golden yellow in color, the A. nemorosa, white, and the A. hortensis, violet. A is also very similar. hepatica characterized by beautiful blue flowers.
Family and gender
|Type of plant||Perennial suffrutticosa||Exposure||Sun, half-shade|
|colors||White, blue, red, fuchsia pink, light pink|
|Flowering||April-June (depending on the planting period, but can be forced)|
It comes from a round and flat rhizome with a diameter of about 1-2 cm which, once planted, develops roots in depth. The leaves are finely lobed. In the spring some drums are thrown that at the top carry a collar with leaves from which the flower opens, with a simple or double cup, bearing six to eight petals. Colors range from pink to red to white to deep blue. The coloring can be uniform, but also have streaks or darker or lighter central rings. The central flower head is generally black (a characteristic that creates a graceful contrast). In some cultivars ("the bride" "Mount Everest") it is instead light yellow tending to green. This gives a very delicate appearance to the inflorescence.
the anemones like a position that goes from full sun to half shade; they are usually used as a low border, at the foot of taller flowering plants or shrubs, since they do not exceed 30 cm in height. It is not a rhizome suitable for running wild, so in winter the rhizomes must be removed from the ground, left to dry and stored in a dry, cool and dark place until the end of winter, in order to be planted the following spring; in places with mild winters they can be left underground, but often, after a few years, they must be replaced. These are small, not very expensive rhizomes, so they are often left in the ground and new ones are planted every year.
it is advisable to keep the soil moist, until the end of flowering, without exceeding, to prevent the rhizomes from rotting; at the end of flowering it is good to completely stop watering, to allow the plant to dry to prepare for winter rest.
the anemone rhizomes can be buried in pots or in the garden, they do not require special soil, as long as they are well drained, to avoid water stagnation, which is harmful to the rhizomes. Usually the rhizomes that are on the market are dry, so it is advisable to leave them at least two hours in lukewarm water before burying them, remembering to place the part with the roots downwards.
occurs by division of the bulbs, to be carried out when the rhizomes are withdrawn from the ground for winter shelter; or you can proceed by seed, in late summer, to get plants the following spring.
Pests and diseases
anemone plants are usually not attacked by pests or diseases; you must pay attention to the bulbs, which if too wet can rot or be attacked by parasites that feed on them.
Commonly, two varieties of coronary anemone can be found: the single-flowered anemone de Caen and the double-flowered or triple-flowered anemone St. Brigid.
The coronary anemone has been cultivated for a long time and, thanks to the fact that it is very simple to obtain new cultivars, many shades of color and both simple and double flowers have been obtained. In the nineteenth century the latter were much loved, but currently the most requested varieties are those with a simple corolla.
The bags that are usually found for sale are mixtures of colors that belong to the most famous groups: the De Caen and the St. Brigid.
Some cultivars worthy of note are:
Admiral: double, fuchsia pink
Governor: simple, scarlet red with white center
Lord Lieutenant: simple, deep blue
Mount Everest: double, white with clear flower head
The Bride: simple, white with a clear head.
Mr. Fokker: simple, purple blue
Sylphide: simple, lilac pink.
The planting can be done both in autumn and in spring. In the first case we will have a more precocious flowering, but also more abundant as well as more vigorous plants. In the second case we will have the flowering in early summer.
To get good results it is important to put the rhizomes in warm water the night before so that they can rehydrate. As a result, it will also be easier to understand where the eyes are and from where they snack on the rootlets.
The soil must be soft and worked very well because the rhizomes are very fragile. They should be placed at 20-25 cm from each other and covered with about 5 cm of earth.
They can also easily be grown in containers. These must be at least 25 cm deep and have a not too compact soil, but not too peaty. It is good to prepare a thick layer of draining material (expanded clay or gravel) on the bottom to avoid water stagnation.
Exposure and climate and terrain
The anemone loves a sunny or at least half-shade exposure. Particular attention must be paid to the amount of sun present (especially during the winter), especially if you do not want to extract the rhizomes from the soil each year.
These in fact are particularly sensitive to humidity and water stagnation and because of this they risk to rot during the cold season. For this reason it is important to choose a dry and sunny position throughout the course of the year and always intervene in the fall with a thick mulch of leaves and straw.
The ideal climate is the temperate one not too dry. It loves the fresh and mountainous areas, where the blooms last longer.
In Italy, therefore, it finds the North and Central Italy as its natural habitat. In the South it is advisable to put it in the garden only if you live in hilly or mountainous areas.
The ideal soil is light, neutral or sub-acid. It is better to avoid soils that are too heavy and clay because there are no rotting or possible iron deficiencies.
Cultivation and maintenance
After flowering it is essential to avoid cutting the leaves until they have dried naturally. This is because the rhizome would lose some of the nutrients used for growth and become weaker year after year. It is recommendable, if you want to be sure to keep them year after year, remove them from the ground when the leaves are completely dry. We must then let them dry in the air, but not directly in the sun, and then place them in a cool place until they need to be planted again. It is even better to avoid placing these plants in the same place. In fact, if they are not moved they often tend to grow and blossom less and less and therefore we will risk getting little satisfaction from them, or even losing them.
Fertilizations and additions
The fertilizations can be of great benefit to the plants. It is appropriate to start in March with a nitrogen fertilizer that favors plant growth. For this purpose, ox blood based fertilizers are very useful. In fact they contain easily assimilable nitrogen as well as iron which helps to prevent leaf chlorosis (which sometimes appears on these plants).
If chlorosis should be very evident, it is possible to intervene with a specific product based on chelated iron. In this case it is always better to administer it by irrigation.
After this initial phase you can then continue with a fertilizer for flowering plants, therefore with a higher potassium content.
After flowering it is better to continue with balanced fertilizer in the components to facilitate the reabsorption of the substances that the plant has used to grow and flourish and therefore be able to keep it for future years.
In rare cases, when autumn is particularly hot, it may happen that non-explanted specimens can return to bloom.
If you want to try to get this result it is important to continue with the fertilization and stimulate the plant again with K rich products. The result however depends largely on the climate.
Hardly these plants are attacked by pests massively. You can check for some phytophagous (for example mites).
The problem is solved with an insecticide that works by contact and ingestion.
If the plant is in full ground it rarely needs a water intervention because it is a plant whose whole cycle takes place in spring when rainfall is abundant.
In pot instead, often if very exposed to the sun, it needs periodic irrigation, however, so that the soil does not become too wet, which could lead to rotting rhizomes. The container must be adequately supplied with a draining layer on the bottom and it is better to avoid the saucer.
The multiplication of coronary anemone can be obtained by following different paths.
The simplest is the division at the time of planting. The "legs" must be broken and divided leaving at least one eye to each part. This mode also guarantees the maintenance of the coloring of the individual varieties.
Sowing is longer, but also more satisfying from a personal point of view.
The seeds are wrapped in a cottony cloud. To obtain individual seeds, they must be mixed with fine sand.
It is advisable to sow them in spring or in June July, in sowing. The ideal is to use small jars or the special alveolar trays for sowing.
They should be covered with about half a centimeter of light earth (or better vermiculite) which should always be kept moist until the seedlings have sprinkled.
To favor germination it is very useful to keep the soil constantly moist, leaving the pots with the base always immersed in about one centimeter of water. Furthermore, the humidity is maintained more easily by inserting the vases in a small greenhouse or by covering them with transparent plastic.
Growth will be very slow and the first flowers will be seen after two years. However, the plants will be fully developed only from the third year.
How to use them in the garden
Coronary anemone can have multiple uses.
A warm recommendation is not to plant isolated specimens. In this way they would not be valued. They would give an impression of sadness.
Instead, they are plants that are enhanced by planting in groups.
You can choose whether to put them all in the same color or in a mixture.
In the first case a good idea could for example be to include varieties like The Bride or Mount Everest in a totally white garden. These are delicate combinations of great elegance and impact.
Other excellent contrasts are white and red, red and blue, fuchsia pink and blue.
They also lend themselves very well to being inserted in mixed borders or at the foot of trees.
Anemone - Anemone coronaria: From cut
Coronary anemone is also an excellent cut flower. Thanks to their multiple colors and the possibility of being easily forced, they have become one of the favorite flowers for creating bouquets and bouquets.
They can be inserted in very elegant and delicate compositions (such as bridal bouquets), but they are also excellent in combination with wild flowers and to create combinations of great visual impact.
With the right care their flowers can last up to several weeks in pot.
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