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Home | Turkish Gardens | Flowers 1 | Flowers 2 | Flowers 3 |

Flowers in a Turkish Garden

Canna Lily

A Canna Lily ( Turkish: Canna Zambak ) is not actually a lily. The name Canna originates from the Celtic word for a cane or reed. Although a plant of the tropics, most cultivars have been developed in temperate climates and are easy to grow in most countries of the world as long as they can enjoy about 6 hours average sunlight during the summer. Cannas grow best in full sun with moderate water in well-drained rich or sandy soil. The plants are large tropical and subtropical perennial herbs with a rhizomatous rootstock. The broad, flat, alternate leaves, that are such a feature of this plant, grow out of a stem in a long narrow roll and then unfurl. The leaves are typically solid green but some cultivars have glaucose, brownish, maroon, or even variegated leaves. The flowers are typically red, orange, or yellow or any combination of those colours. Internationally, cannas are one of the most popular garden plants and a large horticultural industry depends on the plant.

The canna rhizome is rich in starch, and it has many uses in agriculture. All of the plant has commercial value, rhizomes for starch (consumption by humans and livestock), stems and foliage for animal fodder, young shoots as a vegetable and young seeds as an addition to tortillas.

  • The plant yields a fibre - from the stem - it is used as a jute substitute.
  • A fibre obtained from the leaves is used for making paper. The leaves are harvested in late summer after the plant has flowered, they are scraped to remove the outer skin and are then soaked in water for 2 hours prior to cooking. The fibres are cooked for 24 hours with lye and then beaten in a blender. They make a light tan brown paper.
  • A purple dye is obtained from the seed.
  • Smoke from the burning leaves is said to be good insecticidal.
  • Cannas are used to extract many undesirable pollutants in a wetland environment as they have a high tolerance to contaminants.

Chrysanthemum

The garden chrysanthemum ( Turkish: Karizantem ) is one of the most exciting flowers that can be grown in the home landscape for late summer and fall display. Garden mums require a minimum amount of care and do well even under some adverse conditions. There are cultivars (varieties) with color that range from white to yellow, pink, bronze, red and their hues. With hundreds of cultivars available, the choice of plants to grow is unlimited. To have a more interesting collection of mums, however, plant cultivars of various types such as singles, anemones, decoratives, pompons, spoons, spiders and standards.

Garden chrysanthemums are planted in the spring from established cuttings. They used to be offered primarily in the fall as clumps, but today the plants are being sold along with annual flowers and vegetables. Most of the plants are sold in pots that must be removed before planting. The plants generally have had at least one pinch, which results in a well-branched plant. The site for planting should be well drained and receive plenty of sunlight. The plants should be spaced 18 to 24 inches apart; some of the more vigorous cultivars may need 30 to 36 inches. Enough space should be allowed so the plants can develop to their maximum potential. Plant to the same depth they were growing in their containers and no deeper. The plants should be thoroughly watered after planting.

Fertilizing the plants will develop lush, green foliage with optimum flowering. Apply a complete dry fertilizer such as 5-10-5, 5-10-10, 5-20-20 or equivalent at the rate of two to three pounds per 100 square feet of bed area. The dry fertilizer should be watered in after it is applied. Soluble fertilizers such as 15-30-15, 20-20-20 are also quite satisfactory. Follow the rate of application on the package or container. Fertilization can be discontinued after flower buds form in late July.

As the plants grow, they should be pinched to produce compact plants with more flowers and to avoid tall, leggy plants. If the plants become too tall, light will be excluded from the lower part of the plants, resulting in unsightly dead leaves. New shoots should have the tops removed by pinching them off between the thumb and forefinger. This practice should be followed, leaving 2 or 3 leaves on the shoot, whenever the shoot reaches 3 or 4 inches in length. This practice can be timed so that the fertilizing and pinching can be done the same day. This will usually be once a month from May-July. However, with most garden cultivars, the last pinch should be made no later than August 1. If pinching is continued after this date, flower buds will be eliminated from the plants. Follow the directions for each specific cultivar.

Weeds, as with many other plants, may present a problem with growing garden chrysanthemums. These can be removed by hand, or an organic mulch could be used at the time of planting. Materials such as shredded bark, wood chips, coarse peat moss, peanut hulls, sawdust or straw will effectively reduce weeds and conserve moisture in the soil. Organic matter that breaks down rapidly, such as straw, will require an extra application of fertilizer to compensate for the nitrogen loss. Apply this fertilizer in addition to that which is applied for the plants. Landscape fabrics and decorative gravel are also effective in weed control.

Application of adequate amounts of water is a critical cultural practice. During some summers, rainfall may be plentiful enough to eliminate most additional watering. However, the plants should be watered whenever the soil starts to dry. Apply enough water to soak the soil to a depth of four to six inches. This is best done by using sprinklers rather than hand watering. It is best to apply the water during the day so the foliage will dry off before nightfall to avoid leaf and flower diseases.

The most common insect pests of chrysanthemums are aphids and two spotted spider mites. See GreenShare Factsheets on these insects for cultural control recommendations. Powdery mildew and verticillium wilt are two important chrysanthemum diseases--verticillium wilt is difficult to control, and chyrsanthemums should not be planted in contaminated areas for several years.

The garden chrysanthemum, in most instances, should be considered an annual flower by homeowners. When frost kills the tops of the plants, cut off the dead stems and remove from the garden. Sometimes, mums will come up the next spring if just the tops of the plants are cut off. If you prefer to try to keep the plants through the winter, cut off the dead tops and cover the plants with mulch to a depth of three to four inches.

Daisies

Daisies ( Turkish: Papatya ) bloom over a long period, from early summer until fall, forming tidy clumps from 2 to 3 feet tall and up to 2 feet across. The bright flowers contrast nicely with the glossy, dark green foliage, livening up any garden bed. The flowers are also suitable for cutting.

Select a site with full sun and well-drained soil. Plant in spring, spacing plants 1 to 2 feet apart, depending on the variety. Prepare the garden bed by using a garden fork or tiller to loosen the soil to a depth of 12 to 15 inches, then mix in a 2- to 4-inch layer of compost. Dig a hole twice the diameter of the pot the plant is in. Carefully remove the plant from its container and place it in the hole so the top of the root ball is level with the soil surface. Carefully fill in around the root ball and firm the soil gently. Water thoroughly.

Apply a thin layer of compost each spring, followed by a 2-inch layer of mulch to retain moisture and control weeds. Water plants during the summer if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week. Stake tall varieties to keep them upright. After the first killing frost, cut stems back to an inch or two above soil line. Divide plants every 3 to 4 years as new growth begins in the spring, lifting plants and dividing them into clumps.

Gardenia

Gardenia ( Turkish: Gardenya ) plants prefer full sun indoors; if grown outdoors for the spring, summer and early fall, keep plants in partial shade. An east or covered west porch will be satisfactory.

High humidity is essential to gardenia care. Avoid misting the foliage, though, as leaf spot fungal problems will develop. The soil should be kept uniformly moist, but don’t overwater. A loose, well-drained organic soil is recommended.

Fertilize monthly between April and November with an acid fertilizer. Check regularly for insects and other pests such as aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, thrips and scales. Follow recommended control practices if pest problems occur.

The most irritating problem encountered with gardenias is "bud drop,"when flower buds abort just before blooming. Common causes include low humidity, over-watering, under-watering, insufficient light high temperatures, rapid temperature fluctuations, cold drafts or change in plant locations. In other words, gardenias are temperamental! Plants that do not set flower buds may be experiencing too much warmth.

Nar Trees

Geraniums ( Turkish: Sardunya ) are an easy-to-grow perennial which is often used in borders, rock gardens, and as a ground cover. Another common name is cranesbill. Geraniums are a diverse group containing types that grow in a range of conditions, from full sun to shade. Flower colors include pink, blue, white, and purple. Most geraniums blooms in midsummer, although some species will bloom in spring and fall. Plants grow 6 inches to 4 feet tall, depending on the variety. These true geraniums are not the annual flowers commonly grown in windowboxes, which are more properly referred to by their botanical name, Pelargonium. Special Features include their easy care/low maintenance, fast propogation, and resistance to animal intrusion.

Select a site with full sun to light shade and well-drained soil. In hot climates, choosing a site with moist soil and afternoon shade will improve vigor and prolong bloom.

Plant in spring, spacing plants 6 inches to 2 feet apart, depending on the variety. Prepare the garden bed by using a garden fork or tiller to loosen the soil to a depth of 12 to 15 inches, then mix in a 2- to 4-inch layer of compost. Dig a hole twice the diameter of the pot the plant is in. Carefully remove the plant from its container and place it in the hole so the top of the root ball is level with the soil surface. Carefully fill in around the root ball and firm the soil gently. Water thoroughly.

Apply a thin layer of compost each spring, followed by a 2-inch layer of mulch to retain moisture and control weeds. Water plants during the summer if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week. Cut back the plant after flowering to stimulate new growth and reblooming. Divide plants every 3 to 4 years as new growth begins in the spring, lifting plants and dividing them into clumps.


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