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Violaciocca - Matthiola incana
Violet blinds are typical plants of old gardens; for some time they have gone out of fashion, referred to as "grandma's plants" and as such they seemed to be despised, at least in Italy; these annual or biennial plants are of European origin, which have been grown in the garden for hundreds of years, in particular they are plants typical of English cottage gardens, so little formal, with an almost natural appearance.
Viocococes, whose Latin name is Matthiola incana, are short-lived plants, generally their life cycle lasts little more than a year; although they do not fear the cold, after the production of the fruits they tend to dry up, they will return the following year directly from seed. So if this year we decide to sow, even directly in the dwelling, some violecooks, it is very probable that our flowerbed will be visited from year to year by these beautiful plants, with a delicate perfumed flowering.
They produce a tuft of linear leaves, quite disordered, often gray-green in color; a few weeks after sowing the tuft raises some thin, erect stems, which can reach 35-55 cm in height, and carry long spikes of large, simple or double perfumed flowers, in the most varied colors; generally the violet ones are cultivated in shades of pink, but there are many colors, thanks to the hybridizations that have taken place over the years.
A biennial plant
Violet flowers are short-lived plants, generally they take about 3 months from the day they are sown to flowering; the flowers are followed by the fruits, capsules containing the seeds, usually fertile in the simple flower varieties, often not fertile in the double-flowered varieties.
The plants naturally release the seeds in the soil, and after a few weeks they tend to decay, until they dry up; only the following year they will begin to vegetate from seed again. They are easy to find, generally directly from seed, even more rarely already as small plants to be placed directly at home.
However, these plants, unlike other short-lived plants, do not fear frost too much; for this reason it is possible to sow Matthiola incana directly at home towards the end of winter, for a summer or autumn flowering; or we can sow the wallflowers in autumn, to get the first flowers in late winter. If we want a flowerbed always in bloom we can sow the wallflowers at regular intervals, so that when the first plants are drying up, the useful ones are sprouting instead.
Cultivate the violaciocca
As is often the case with "grandmother's" plants, even the violet ones are of very simple cultivation. They are sown directly at home, in a good rich soil, loose and very well drained, previously well moistened; the waterings will be regular, but we always wait for the ground to be well dry before watering again, in order to avoid dangerous stagnation. Remember to water in a special way the plants that have recently sprouted and those in bloom, which are less susceptible to prolonged drought.
For these plants we choose a very sunny, or even partially shaded, place, especially if we plant them as small plants in late spring.
They can also be grown in pots, but definitely the effect is much better if we prepare an entire flowerbed of violecros, rather than preparing a vase with a couple of plants.
Violaciocca - Matthiola incana: Grandmother's garden
For some strange reason the presence of some plants in the gardens follows the fashions, and sometimes plants used for decades, by now proven, tend to go into disuse; as for the species of matthiola incana the same happened for the stars, the phloxes, the primroses, the purslane. Every year in the nursery we look for the "exotic" plant, as if the garden was set up only to amaze neighbors or guests.
In fact, in this way it can happen to plant hard-to-grow plants, not suited to the climate in which we live, which require special care.
So, if we love to enjoy the flowers in the garden, but we don't always have all the time we need to cultivate them in the best way, let us rely on the flowers of the ninths, which are splendid, with guaranteed success, and do not require care that is impossible to offer, especially for those who do not a gardener can be allowed.