Periwinkle is an evergreen plant that is often used to decorate plots. There are several species that differ in color and other external features. One of them is variegated periwinkle, its leaves are not dark green, but with a light wide border. On this basis, it is easy to distinguish it from other plant species.
Variegated periwinkle - ground cover perennial, shrub with creeping, thin long shoots. They easily branch and take root in internodes. The plant has oval-elongated, leathery leaves located oppositely on the shoots. In the variegated variety, they are painted in 2 colors - the middle is green, the edges are much lighter, greenish. The border is wide and uneven, asymmetrical.
Peduncles grow back in spring, at first they grow upward, can reach a length of 15-20 cm. After flowering, they lodge. The flowers of the periwinkle of this species, like the ordinary one, are azure-blue, funnel-shaped, small in size (about 2 cm in diameter). Solitary, found in leaf axils. Flowering occurs at the end of April or mid-May, lasts up to a month.
Variegated periwinkle variety can be easily distinguished by its leaves with a light border.
Variegated periwinkle (Variegata) refers to the species of large periwinkle (Vinca major) and includes varieties in which the leaves have a whitish (Argenteovariegata) or yellowish (Aureovariegata) border. The color of the stripe may vary depending on the conditions in which the plants are located and their age. For different varieties, the width of the border can be different, as well as the color of the flowers - blue or white.
Popular varieties of variegated periwinkle with a yellow border:
- Golden (Golden);
Variety of periwinkle with almost completely yellow leaves or with a characteristic border along their entire length
- Valley Glow
Differs in the average size of leaves and flowers
- Blue and Gold (Blue and Gold);
Plants of this variety can bloom again in early autumn.
- Sunny Skies
Flowers are stable in color, do not fade in intense sun
White border in flower varieties:
- Alba Variegata (Alba Variegata);
Long-flowering variety that can last until July
- Ralph Shugert (Ralph Shugert);
Plants have oval rather than elongated leaves and large purple flowers
- Bowles' Variety (Bowles Variety);
The plant is resistant to weather conditions, has a large flower and grows quickly
- Sterling Silver
Drought-resistant variety, grows well in the shade
- Moonlit (Moonlight).
The flowers are composed of several layers of petals, it is considered rare and one of the most beautiful varieties.
How and when to plant in open ground
Variegated periwinkle grows well on any type of soil, takes root easily and grows quickly, covering the area with a dense green carpet. This plant, which can withstand shade without problems, can grow under trees, although it prefers partial shade. It can be planted anywhere, both in lighted areas and completely shady.
On fertile soils, the plant can become aggressive, expanding, suppressing the growth of not only small neighbors, but also large and strong ones. Even weeds do not break through the dense carpet created by periwinkle shoots and leaves. This feature of the flower can be used by planting it in areas that need to be freed from weeds.
Variegated periwinkle takes root easily, all it needs after transplanting is moist soil, so it can be planted at any time of the warm season. But most often it is transplanted in the spring before flowering or in the middle of autumn. In summer, a transfer is also possible, in rainy and cool weather. Due to the rapid growth, the bushes are placed at a distance of at least 30-35 cm from each other.
Variegated periwinkle, like all species of this culture, is completely unpretentious, it is very easy to care for it. Its roots penetrate deep into the soil, can draw moisture from the lower layers, so the flower does not need constant watering. It needs to be irrigated only upon transplantation; after rooting, it can do with natural watering. Adult bushes may need watering only in hot summer.
The variegated periwinkle does not need to be fed, but it responds well to this procedure. It can be fertilized with any mineral compounds or organic matter (humus, peat compost, 2-3 kg per 1 sq. M). They need to be introduced in the spring, at the beginning of the growing season and in the fall, after its end.
Periwinkle grows quickly even with minimal care
Diseases and pests
Variegated periwinkle is quite resistant to many diseases, sometimes affected by powdery mildew, often after prolonged rains. Of the pests, aphids and scale insects attack him. You need to fight them by spraying with soapy water, insecticides created to kill insects of these species (Aktara, Match, Angio, Aktellik). Preventive treatments also do not hurt; they can be carried out in the spring and in the middle of summer.
In order for the area with periwinkle to look neat and the plants do not grow too much, they need to be cut. This operation is carried out in spring or autumn, remove all shoots that go beyond the area allocated for the flower. Thinning is also carried out if the plants are too thickened.
Preparing for winter
Periwinkle belongs to cold-resistant crops, and does not need shelter for the winter. But for reliability in regions with cold winters, it is advisable to insulate it. Fallen leaves can be used as mulch. If periwinkle grows under trees, then leaves crumbling in autumn will serve as a natural insulating material for it. The variegated periwinkle is an evergreen plant, and even under the snow, its leaves remain green.
The easiest way is to propagate variegated periwinkle vegetatively - by dividing the bush or replanting rooted cuttings. Delenki and shoots take root quickly and without problems. You can transplant periwinkle in early spring or autumn, after pruning. Trimmed parts of shoots with roots are well suited for reproduction. They do not need to be rooted first, you can immediately plant them in a permanent place. It is very simple to plant the cuttings, it is enough to make small holes, bury the shoots in them by 2/3 of the part, leaving a few leaves above the surface. Then you need to water them and sprinkle them with soil. Water for at least 2 weeks after planting.
By dividing the bush, variegated periwinkle is propagated in early spring. The bush is dug up with roots, divided into several equal parts. The pits are created so deep that the entire root system can fit freely in them. The delenka is placed in a hole, the roots are straightened, watered and covered with earth. The distance between adjacent bushes should be at least 30 cm.
The easiest way periwinkle reproduces by cuttings - the tops of the shoots
Another way of reproduction of variegated periwinkle is by seeds. They ripen in pods and are harvested in September. They need to be selected from dry boxes, dried and sorted out. Fold in a paper bag or cloth bag and store in a cool, dark place.
Periwinkle seeds are sown in February or early March. Plastic cups with a volume of 0.25 ml can be used as containers. They are filled with a loose and fertile substrate (a universal mixture for growing indoor flowers is perfect). 2-3 seeds are dipped into each glass to a depth of 2 cm, watered and sprinkled with earth on top. The containers are covered with a light film and placed on a lighted warm windowsill. The room temperature must be at least 20 ˚С.
Seeds of variegated periwinkle germinate approximately 2-3 weeks after sowing. After that, the film is removed. Caring for small plants consists of watering and feeding. They are watered so as to keep the soil moist; warm, settled water is needed. Periwinkle seedlings are fed with complex mineral fertilizers (every 2 weeks). When the plants reach a height of 10 cm, they can be transplanted to the site.
Advice! Variegated periwinkle can grow not only outdoors, but also indoors in pots.
It happens that the plant does not bloom. This can happen if the bush is old, in which case it needs to be dug up and replaced with fresh cuttings. Young periwinkle does not bloom most often due to lack of water, nutrition or lighting. If you correct mistakes in agricultural technology, the plant will definitely bloom.
Photo in landscape design
Variegated periwinkle can be planted near trees and bushes, fruit and conifers, near curbs, paths, in any areas that need to be landscaped.
In the shade under the trees, the plant feels great
Periwinkle can be a good backdrop for many ornamental plants traditionally grown in the garden. It looks especially beautiful with spring flowers: primroses, forget-me-nots, lungwort, hyacinths, forest trees, aquilegia.
The plant looks good next to stones
It is used to refine unsightly areas, planted on the dividing strip between garden paths and flower beds, near an alpine slide.
Landscape designers consider variegated periwinkle a versatile plant that can be planted in any part of the site, in a sunny or shady place, and it will look beautiful everywhere.
One of the traditional placements of periwinkle is along the garden paths
The flower can be grown in pots, containers, put them on decorative stands. In the case of pot cultivation, it must be transplanted into a new substrate every year. In this case, variegated periwinkle requires more careful care, it needs to be watered more often, especially in the heat, and fed.
Attention! Periwinkle grows easily and can oppress other flowers that grow with it, so its growth must be controlled.
Variegated periwinkle grows on any soil and in any climatic conditions. This is a very unpretentious flower that requires minimal maintenance. He will be able to decorate any area, goes well with most ornamental crops.