Plant blue pillows correctly
When this year's gardening season draws to a close, the planting time for blue pillows begins. In the sunny location, loosen up the soil to add compost, horn shavings, sand and rock flour if necessary (€ 14.95 on Amazon *). Since a single Aubrieta looks so lost, we recommend an arrangement in small tuffs with 3-5 copies. To do this, dig spacious planting holes at a distance of 30 cm, then pot out the young plants and place them in the enriched substrate. Press the soil down with your hands to finish off with normal tap water.
- Planting blue pillows: planting time, location, distance & Co
- Blue pillow Location: Lots of sunshine or rather shady?
- When is the sowing and planting time for blue pillows?
The abundance of flowers makes us believe that blue pillows are maintenance-intensive. In fact, the perennial is pleasantly undemanding. The following overview lists all the important care factors:
- Only water the blue pillow with normal tap water if it is dry for a long time
- A start fertilization with compost, horn shavings and algae lime in March covers the nutrient requirements in the bed
- From March to July, add liquid fertilizer to the irrigation water in a pot every 2-3 weeks
- Cutting back after flowering creates the conditions for autumn re-flowering
- Cut the perennial near the ground in January / February
Even though Aubrieta are completely hardy, we recommend light winter protection in the year of planting and every year in the pot and flower box (€ 13.18 at Amazon *).
Which location is suitable?
Blue pillows are sun worshipers like out of a picture book. The more sun the Mediterranean ground cover can absorb, the more splendid the carpet of flowers will develop. The perennials feel particularly at home in a sheltered location in front of the south wall of the house, because even summer heat does not affect vitality. In addition, the soil should be well-drained, moderately rich in nutrients and calcareous. Aubrieta also feel in good hands along a sun-drenched wall crown, on the roof garden or in the gravel bed.
The correct planting distance
In the right location and lovingly cared for, blue pillows thrive significantly more in width than in height. With an average height of 10 cm, you can quickly add 30 cm in width. When choosing the planting distance, pay attention to this fact in order to achieve a dense flower cushion. With a planting distance of 25-30 cm you are exactly right. For a two-dimensional arrangement, plant 11 specimens per square meter.
What soil does the plant need?
When choosing the location, coordinate the lighting conditions and the nature of the ground. The sunnier the location, the fresher the earth should be. In addition, a medium to high calcium content is essential for vital growth and abundant flowering. With the help of an uncomplicated test set, you can determine the pH value in the soil. A result between 6.5 and 8 is desirable. If the quality of the soil does not reach the optimum, use soil additives to compensate. Too lean soil is enriched with compost, bark humus and horn shavings. Lean moist, greasy soil with sand, fine grit and add rock flour or algae lime.
What is the best time to plant?
Autumn is considered to be the ideal planting time for Aubrieta grown by hand or bought ready-made. In September, dig a small hole in the garden soil and put your hand in it to feel the warmth stored there. Under these conditions, the Mediterranean blue pillows naturally take root quickly. If you miss the appointment between the end of August and mid-October, plant the charming ground cover from the end of April / beginning of May.
When is the flowering time?
Blue pillows spoil us with a colorful flowering time from April to May. If you can't get enough of the lavish carpet of flowers, cut back the perennial at the beginning of June. A multitude of splendid hybrids have the potential for autumn re-flowering, which initiates pruning in good time.
Cut blue pillows correctly
With one cut at the right time, you can complete two central maintenance measures in one operation. If you cut back the withered flower pads at the end of May / beginning of June, this effort will be rewarded with a splendid re-flowering in autumn. At the same time you spare the busy flower beauties the energy-sapping seed growth and prevent self-sowing. To enjoy the winter green carpets during the cold season, cut the perennial close to the ground on a frost-free day in January / February.
Pour blue pillows
Drought stress does not affect the Mediterranean flower artists in the long term. Although blue pillows can cope with short-term drought, they should be watered every now and then, especially on hot summer days. In the early morning or late evening, put normal tap water directly onto the root disc using the nozzle. For Aubrieta in pots and flower boxes, this measure is necessary more often than outdoors. This is especially true for a location surrounded by air, which allows the potting soil to dry out quickly.
Fertilize blue pillows properly
An excessive supply of nutrients causes blue pillows to age prematurely. You should therefore limit the fertilization to an application of compost with horn shavings in March. If you add a handful of rock flour or algae lime, the perennial will be completely satisfied with it. In the limited substrate volume of balcony boxes and tubs, supplies are used up more quickly. Apply a liquid fertilizer for flowering plants every 2-3 weeks from March to July.
The most common cause of a health problem in blue pillows is the widespread fungal infection powdery mildew. As an unmistakable symptom, the delicate leaves are covered with a floury-white coating. A milk spray has proven to be an effective control measure. Mix 1 liter of water with 125 ml of fresh milk. If you spray this mix repeatedly onto the top and bottom of the leaves, there is a good chance that the perennial will be saved. It is an advantage if you cut off the infected shoots beforehand and dispose of them in the household waste.
Its abundant flower pile belies the robust winter hardiness. In fact, blue pillows can withstand freezing temperatures down to - 17 degrees Celsius. In the year of planting and in the tub, however, we recommend light winter protection. Cover the young perennials with leaves and needles. Slide a block of wood underneath the planters and wrap them with bubble wrap. A colorful winter coat made of jute is nice to look at, which, in combination with the winter green leaves, creates an eye-catching appearance.
Propagate blue pillows
If you are fascinated by the abundance of flowers, you can easily grow new blue pillows. Choose from the following methods:
- Division of the root ball in spring or autumn
- Cut cuttings in April or May to allow them to take root in a small pot by autumn
- Cultivation by sowing on the windowsill from February at a constant 20-22 degrees Celsius (not possible for all varieties)
Direct sowing in the bed and balcony box is also possible and uncomplicated to carry out. At the end of April / beginning of May, prepare a fine crumbly substrate, scatter the tender seeds, and sift them thinly with sand or vermiculite. Moistened with a fine shower head, germination proceeds quickly in the warm, partially shaded location. In the open air, a close-meshed net protects the seeds from pecking birds and voracious snails.
How do I transplant properly?
If a blue pillow takes care of yourself, nothing speaks against a change of location. Dig up the root ball in spring or autumn. If some parts are already bald, cut them out without further ado. Then plant the perennial in the sunny location in the permeable, sandy-loamy soil and water it with tap water.
Blue pillows in the pot
In the pot and balcony box, blue cushions as dense, hanging cushions of flowers create a picturesque appearance. Use a lean TKS1 standard soil as the substrate. Commercially available potting soil is thinned with sand, expanded clay (€ 17.50 at Amazon *) or lava granules. To prevent waterlogging, place a curved pottery shard over each water drain to fill in the earth. Arrange the potted young plants at a distance of 20 cm a little closer to each other than in the bed. Set up in a sunny, warm place, water the perennials when it is dry. Every 2 to 3 weeks add some liquid fertilizer to the irrigation water. Cutting back after the first flowering conjures up an autumn re-flowering for most hybrids.To protect against frost and moisture, wrap the pot and flower box with foil or jute tape. A base made of wood or styrofoam keeps the ground cold away from the root ball. If the beauty of the blue-green foliage leaves a lot to be desired in late winter, cut the perennial right down to the ground to make space for fresh shoots.
Is blue pillow poisonous?
You do not have to worry about the toxicity of blue pillows. The Mediterranean perennial is harmless in every respect. Thus, the flower is recommended as an ideal spring bloomer for the family garden. If your four-legged house mates nibble on it, there is also no need to worry, as long as the cat, dog and rabbit don't eat the flowers and leaves in large quantities.
- Red Carpet: Favorite purple variety that blooms profusely and develops particularly dense cushions; Height 8-10 cm
- Blue tit: Distinctive spring beauty with blue-violet flowers and evergreen leaves; Height 5-10 cm
- Downer's Bont: cheerful play of colors with variegated white leaves and purple flowers; Height 8-10 cm
- Havelberg: Spring freshness opulence thanks to double flowers in soft pink for compact cushions; Height 5-8 cm
- Kitty: impresses with its extra-large violet-blue flowers that stand out on top of the wall; Height 5-10 cm
- Winterling: Picturesque hybrid with double flowers in bright white for sunny locations; Height 5-10 cm