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Video: Dodecateon Is A Beautiful Perennial For Your Garden
Dodecateon - the flower of the twelve gods, a godsend for your garden
At the end of summer, when gardeners are preparing for the autumn planting of bulbous and spring primroses, it is time to divide the bushes of the spring handsome - dodecateon. Perhaps not all flower growers know it yet, then get acquainted.
Dodecateon grows in almost all states of the United States, and its flower is the emblem of the NARGS (American Rocky Gardens Society).
Its national American names - "meteor", "steppe", for the originality of the flower stalks, the plant used to be called a chandelier (a hanging chandelier in a church).
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Translated from Greek, dodecateon means “twelve gods” or “a plant protected by the Greek gods” (from two words' dodeka '- twelve and theos' - god). In ancient times in Greece, the plant was used as a healing plant. And in culture, one species is usually used - the middle dodecateon (D. meadia). In nature, it is common in eastern North America. It grows on dry prairies, forest edges and rocky slopes. The first settlers of America gave this plant a trivial name - "steppe" or "indicating the prairie." Cosmetic preparations were made from its petals. In those days, the population of the dodecateon was much larger than it is now.
Its vegetative shoots are shortened. Leaves are basal, broadly oval or elliptical, up to 10-30 cm long. Peduncles 15-50 cm tall. Dodecateon flowers are very similar to cyclamen flowers - plants from the same family - with five bent-back petals of white, pink, purple color. The petals do not cover the anthers. During the period of seed ripening, the corolla lobes are bent upward, exposing the calyx, and together with the stamens and pistil, the flower looks like a flying rocket. This feature gave the plant its second name - meteor.
The fruit is in the shape of a barrel and contains a large number of tiny seeds. If you encounter a dodecateon in nature, it will take time for you to appreciate its graceful beauty when examining a flower up close. It blooms from June for 30-35 days and bears fruit. On hot days, the dodecateon is very fond of abundant watering. He absolutely does not tolerate the open sun, stopping growth and flowering. In addition, it is hardy and hibernates without shelter.
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Dodecateon is propagated by dividing adult plants in autumn or spring and by seeds. When grown from seed, cold stratification will be required for 1 to 2 months. Seedlings are capricious, but develop quickly.
Flowering occurs in 2-3 years. When propagated by seeds, the best seedlings are obtained by sowing directly into the ground in the fall. We cover the sown seeds with humus with a layer of 2-3 centimeters. Seedlings appear in early spring. At the end of May, we will spread them to beds located somewhere in the shade. The distance between plants is 3-5 centimeters. We water the seedlings regularly, but we make sure that there is not a lot of dampness in the beds, since young plants die from the abundance of moisture.
The division of the dodecateon bush is very simple: they dig up an adult bush, disassemble it into independent plants and plant it in a permanent place to a depth of 7 centimeters at a distance of 20 centimeters from each other. The plant can stay in one place for three years, after which it is better to divide it and plant it in new places.
Dodecateon looks great when planted near shrubs, as well as on shaded beds. It can also be planted for cutting. Flowers cut from a flower bed and placed in a vase stand in the water for a long time and bloom all the buds. Unfortunately, dodecateon is rarely found in our gardens. But this plant, given its unusual splendor and unpretentious cultivation, undoubtedly deserves our attention and admiration.