The many-sided ixia mix: when and where to plant, how to care for a perennial
I have long wanted to plant Ixia in the country, and then a neighbor in the fall gave me a dozen bulbs from her garden with multi-colored inflorescences. Please tell us about the peculiarities of growing and caring for Ixia mix. Where is the best place to plant bulbs and when it can be done?
Delicate heat-loving plants from the tropics can often be found in our area, because true flower lovers are not afraid of possible difficulties. Ixia is no exception – a charming perennial from the iris family. One of the most popular plant species is the Ixia mix varietal mixture, because only a few bushes can decorate a flower bed with all the colors of the rainbow. How to grow an ixia mix on your site and how to care for it, we’ll talk about this today.
Description of the variety
Ixia mix is the most colorful species of thermophilic perennial. Despite the rather short flowering, which lasts no more than 3 weeks, it amazes with its varied color. In mid-July, numerous, rather large, flowers bloom on the tops of the bushes, from which they simply dazzle in the eyes: yellow and white, pink and lemon, red and burgundy stars sway from the wind, and in early August they gradually fade.
It is interesting that at night the buds of ixia are closed in order to unfold their delicate petals with the sunrise and ennoble the flower bed with a subtle delicate aroma.
Otherwise, the variety looks quite familiar: xiphoid leaves grow from the bulbs, among which the peduncle rises. The total plant height rarely exceeds 70 cm, bushes up to half a meter are most often found.
When to plant?
Like other varieties, Ixia mix propagates by corms and seeds. Since growing seedlings is more laborious, most gardeners grow perennials through bulbs, moreover, this allows you to see its flowering in the first year. The time of planting the bulbs in the ground depends on the climatic conditions of a particular region:
- the warm southern climate quite allows Ixia to be planted before winter, but it does not exempt from the requirement to additionally cover the plantings with a thick layer of mulch so that the corms do not freeze out;
- when growing a flower in the middle lane with cold winters, it is better to plant the bulbs in the spring, in mid-May, when the earth warms up.
Winter planting should be deeper (at least 12 cm) in order to reliably hide the tubers in the soil from frost.
Where to plant?
Ixia mix is very demanding on lighting, so a bright flower bed should be allocated for it, avoiding places where water stagnates in spring, otherwise the bulbs will quickly rot. The soil should be sufficiently loose (sand is added if necessary) and fertile, so the introduction of humus before planting will be very useful. It’s a good idea to add some superphosphate and ash..
How to care?
Ixia mix is completely undemanding, and it is easy to care for it, namely:
- water and spray abundantly;
- pick off drying leaves and faded inflorescences;
- feed with infusion of bird droppings or a ready-made mineral fertilizer complex twice a month.
With the arrival of autumn, the bushes can be left to winter in the ground, having previously cut off the entire deciduous part and mulched, or dig up and store until spring in a dry room.