Distinctive features, agricultural techniques for growing liriope, breeding steps, difficulties in leaving, interesting facts, species. Liriope is also referred to as Liriope and belongs to the genus of perennials belonging to the Liliaceae family, but according to some other sources, the plant is referred to as Asparagaceae. The number of representatives of this genus is small. Its native area of growth falls on the territory of East Asia (China and Japan), settling in forests and mountains, as well as on plains in close proximity to water bodies.
The flower bears its name in honor of the nymph Liriope, due to the fact that the plant is very similar in appearance to the Liriope hyacinth, you can often hear how it is called "mouse hyacinth". But in some nationalities this representative of the flora is named "peat lily" or "viper onion".
The height of the lyriope does not exceed 20–65 cm, while the stem is absent, and the roots are short and fleshy, with tuberous thickenings and formations in the form of stolons. That is, the root system is fibrous, and the rhizome itself is very close to the surface of the soil.
The leaf plates are collected in a rosette, their outlines are narrow and drooping (twisted at the tops), which makes the leaves very similar to cereals. Their surface is hard, but the edge is smooth to the touch. At the same time, a lush bush is formed, which, even without flowers, is of decorative value. The color of the foliage is bright green, sometimes there are whitish stripes on the surface (variegated variety). The width of the sheet does not exceed one and a half centimeters with a length of up to 35 cm.
The inflorescences have a spike-like shape, they look like bunches of grapes. They collect small flowers with the outlines of bells. The diameter in the opening reaches 0.7 cm, the flowers are very reminiscent of the contours of lily of the valley flowers, even in their location. There are six petals in a flower, their outlines are oval. The color of the petals of the flowers is varied, this includes shades of white, purple, blue, lilac, and also blue. Inside the bud there are bright yellow stamens protruding from the corolla. The flowering process lasts from August to mid-autumn. The aroma of flowers is practically not pronounced.
After flowering, the fruit ripens in the form of a simple two-shift box, inside which there are small seeds of a dark purple hue with a rough surface, they reach 7 mm in diameter.
The plant looks great as a border culture, and it is also customary to plant Liriope in rock gardens and a variety of flower beds. You can cultivate "mouse hyacinth" in pots when grown indoors. The plant is distinguished by increased properties of drought and frost resistance. If liriope is planted in the open ground, then growing, it forms rather dense clumps (low thickets) of spherical outlines.
This representative of the flora is quite easy to grow and even a beginner grower can achieve its flowering, but you should still adhere to the rules below.
Growing liriope, planting and caring at home
- When grown in the garden the place is selected with light and drained soil, which has nutritious properties and weak acidity. Also, the "peat lily" does not tolerate stagnant water, therefore, the location in the lowlands is strictly prohibited, as well as the calcareous substrate. The place for planting should be with bright, but diffused illumination, you can form flower beds in the shade of trees that create a small shadow with their crown. However, there are varieties that can grow with equal success both in full shade and in a brightly lit place.
- General garden care for Liriope. Every 2-3 years, the curtains lose their decorative appeal, and it is recommended to plant them, as growth and flowering weaken. It will be necessary to regularly water in hot weather, loosening the soil and weeding from weeds. But it is also important to remember that here, too, the soil under the lyriopa should not be poured, since it will perfectly cope with arid conditions than with waterlogging of the soil. If the inflorescences wither, then it is recommended to remove them. When grown in open ground conditions, it is necessary 3-4 times during the summer and autumn months to make additional fertilizing of complete mineral complexes in liquid form. For the winter period, you should cover the "mouse hyacinth" with fallen leaves or spruce paws, but these measures will be needed only in the middle lane. In other areas, the plant will perfectly tolerate the winter months without such a shelter. In indoor conditions, the rules of care are slightly different for the "peat lily":
- Lighting and location. The plant prefers bright, but diffused light, shaded from direct sunlight. But full shade will be a problem during the active growing season (spring) and when the flowering process begins (summer and fall months). It is better to place the pot with the plant on the window sills facing west and east. As a last resort, you can place the lyriope in a light shade, as its "mouse hyacinth" can easily endure.
- Content temperature when growing "peat lily" in room conditions should be moderate. In the summertime, the thermometer readings should fluctuate in the range of 18–20 units. In the heat, it is recommended to remove the flower from the windowsill or create a good shade for it with curtains or light curtains. With the onset of winter, the temperature should be reduced, creating a cool winter. In this case, the column of the thermometer should be at 10 degrees, but it is not recommended to lower the lower limit to 4 units. The plant is afraid of drafts.
- Air humidity when caring for liriope is not an important component, but some growers notice that when spraying every 5-7 days, "mouse hyacinth" looks much better. The water is soft and warm.
- Watering. To moisten the soil in a pot of liriope, use warm and soft water, as when spraying. It is defended for several days. Between waterings, the soil layer on the surface should dry out a little. Complete drying of the substrate in a flowerpot is not desirable, but it is worse than its bay. When the heat indices fall, then there is a reduction in irrigation.
- Mouse hyacinth fertilizers. Apply universal feeding for flowering plants. They should contain potassium and phosphorus. The product should be diluted in water for irrigation and applied every 15–20 days. As soon as flowering stops, fertilizers are canceled.
- Transfer and selection of soil. Such an operation will be required at a young age every year, but over time, it will be once every 3-4 years. The pot should be slightly larger than the old one. In a new flowerpot, holes are made in the bottom to drain excess water, a drainage layer is poured. The substrate can be used universal for flowering indoor plants.
The sequence of steps for breeding Liriope
To get a new mouse hyacinth plant, it is recommended to divide the overgrown clumps or sow seed.
Seed propagation is rarely used, since it is more laborious. Used for planting the seeds collected last year. They are sown on May days. Before sowing, it is recommended to soak the seed material for a day in warm water, and then place the cut in the ground. In a garden or pot (filled with peat-sandy substrate) shallow grooves are prepared in the soil, and the seeds are distributed in them at a distance of 5–10 cm from each other. As soon as the seedlings grow up and get stronger, then they dive, leaving only the strongest specimens. Moreover, the distance between young lyriopes should be already 30–40 cm.
When dividing the "peat lily" bushes, time is selected on May days, combining this process with transplantation. In this case, it is first recommended to water the bushes thoroughly, and then gently dig them out of the substrate. Since the root system is located superficially, the plant is easily removed from the soil. When dividing, it should be done in such a way that each dividing has a part of the rhizome and 8-10 leaf plates. The holes in the flowerbed are prepared in advance, as well as pots with soil (if indoor growing). It is not recommended to deepen parts of the lyriope. The planting distance between parts of the plants is maintained at 35–40 cm.
It is recommended to practice planting every 3-4 years, as over time the curtain grows strongly and the number of flowers on it decreases. After planting, young bushes are recommended to be regularly watered when the soil dries out, to create a light shade until the plants take root. Fertilizers can be applied several times for general strengthening. Within two months the regularity will be 1-2 times a week.
Pests and diseases in the care of Liriope
Of the pests that annoy the "mouse hyacinth", spider mites, aphids and scale insects are isolated. When these harmful insects appear, it is recommended to carry out treatment with insecticidal preparations.
The following troubles also happen when growing liriope:
- when the soil is depleted in nutrients, the growth of "peat lily" is rather rare, the flowering is poor;
- if the earthen lump in the pot is often overdried, then this will lead to the fact that the tips of the foliage dry out, acquiring first a sandy color, and then brown;
- if the leaf plates have lost their rigidity, and the root system has begun to rot, then the reason for this was the filling of the substrate, there are no drain holes in the pot, the quality of drainage is poor;
- when direct sunlight hits the foliage at noon, it will soon dry up and begin to die off, and the plant will gradually die.
Of the diseases that lyriopa suffers from, root rot is isolated if the irrigation regime is not adjusted. When grown in open ground, slugs and scale insects can become a problem - insecticides such as Actellik, Aktara or Thunderstorm (from snails and slugs) will help in the fight.
Interesting facts about lyriopa
Liriope spikelet is also called "Mai-men-dong" and the stem of this plant is widely used by Chinese healers. There is an opinion that the funds based on it contribute to the general strengthening of the body, has diuretic and anti-febrile properties. It also cures tuberculosis, bronchitis and bronchial asthma.
Types of lyriope
Liriope muscari is the most common variety with many forms and varieties. The plant is distinguished by a rhizome of a vertical arrangement in the depth of the soil, with formations in the form of lumps. The leaf plates are rigid, the general background is dark green, but sometimes there is a longitudinal yellow stripe. The height of the overgrown clumps does not exceed 70 cm, but this directly depends on the Liriope variety. Leaves are equal to or slightly larger than the flower-bearing stem. Its parameters vary within 25–70 cm. The number of inflorescences is multiple (up to ten or more whorls) and they are formed from densely spaced flowers of white or light purple color. The number of buds in each whorl is 4–7 units. When opened, their diameter is 0, 6–0, 8 cm. The length of the pedicel reaches 0, 4–0, 5 cm. The flowering process occurs in September – October. When the fruit is ripe, a box is formed, almost spherical in shape, reaching 0.8 cm in diameter.
Territories of natural growth fall on the lands of China and Japan, where a subtropical or temperate climate prevails. The variety is the base for the following bred varieties:
- Variegata (variegated) species - yellow stripes are clearly visible along the edge of the sheet plates.
- Big blue - the flower petals of this variety are cast in lavender color, the plant perfectly tolerates the bright sun.
- Christmas tree - this garden form has leaf plates larger in width than the base view and flowers of a bluish or lovandian blue hue, feels comfortable in shading.
- Evergreen Giant differs in frost resistance, the height of the shoots is greater than that of the original variation, and the petals of the flowers are snow-white.
- John Burch along the edge of the dark green leaf plates, a yellow stripe is started, the color of the flowers in the inflorescences is Lovandian blue, perfectly tolerates both shade and bright insolation.
- Gold banded, the curtain formed by this cultivar is higher, the leaves are decorated with a golden-yellow stripe, the flowers amaze the eye with a bright blue-violet color, gather in racemose inflorescences. The leaf width is wider than that of the similar John Burch variety, and they also exhibit greater curvature. The place of growth is recommended to be sunny or with a little shade.
- Majestic it perfectly shows its growth in the shade, has shorter leaf plates, but the height parameters of the peduncles exceed the base view.
- Monroe white can only grow in dense shade, the leaves are dark green in color, the flower petals are white.
- Royal purple forms large clumps with its shoots, which are covered with racemose inflorescences of purple or dark purple color. It perfectly tolerates both shade and bright sun.
- Exiliflora (fine-flowered) possesses delicate and loose racemose inflorescences.
Liriope spicata is also found under the name Liriope paniculate. This variety differs from others in excellent frost resistance. The leaf plates are narrow, lanceolate, evergreen, gathering in dense and wide clumps. They feed on a fibrous root system. The height of a flowering plant can vary between 30-40 cm. Peduncles are slightly shorter than the leaves themselves, crowned with dense inflorescences of paniculate outlines. The inflorescences are collected from flowers, which in diameter can open up to 0, 4–0, 6 cm. The color of the petals is silvery, can be light purple or different shades of blue.
Under natural conditions, the variety can be found in China, Japan, Vietnam and South Korea.
Liriope platyphylla can be found under the name Ophiopogon spicatus. The native habitat falls on the lands of the subtropical and temperate zones of the Korea Peninsula, and also includes the territories of China and Japan. The root system is fibrous with pineal formations. Located very close to the surface. The plant can reach a height of 40 cm. It has leaf plates decorated with stripes and a sinuous shape, often they are longer than flowering stems. The height of the peduncle varies in the range of 10-30 cm, whorled inflorescence consists of 5-9 flower formations, each bearing 2-4 buds. The length of the pedicels is 0, 2–0, 3 cm. When opening, the flower can measure 0, 4–0, 6 cm across. The color of the petals is dark blue. Ripening spherical fruitlets, about 0.6 cm in diameter.
There is also the Silver Dragon variety, which has a silvery shade of foliage, inflorescences of a lovando-blue color; the garden culture Liriope graminifolia Baker is also known to flower growers, which is distinguished by pedicels of a longer length, but the diameter of the flowers of the plant is smaller.
How does lyriope look in the video below: