Gardening

Beautify your garden with the colorful flowers of Berlandiera lyrata

Berlandiera lyrata also known as Chocolate Flower, Chocolate Margarita or Chocolate Daysi, belongs to the Compositae family. Being originally from the Southwest of the United States.

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Characteristics of the Berlandiera lyrata

Perennial herbaceous plant 5 m high. The flowers are of the daisy type, bright yellow and brown or garnet in the center, the stamens are chocolate-colored, to which are added orange-brown stripes on the underside of the petals. Depending on the wind, you can smell its fragrance from a distance of about 9 m. The leaves are velvety, gray-green in color, have entire scalloped edges, resembling lyres. The stems are erect and branched. Flowering is in the spring and early summer.

Berlandiera lyrata care

It is a species that must be located in an area where it receives at least a few hours of direct sunlight. It is also able to tolerate drought and can be planted in the sun or in part shade.

Regarding temperature, it shows greater sensitivity to very high or very low temperatures. It can withstand not very strong frosts (-12˚). In the summer months it can be covered with a portion of land close to the roots with dry leaves to protect from the weather.

As regards the soil, it must be soft, deep and well drained.

Irrigation must be done in depth so that it is then allowed to dry until it needs watering again.

Pruning should be done once the flowers have dried and allow the new shoots to grow vigorously.

Composting must be done frequently and for this, a compost enriched with manure can be provided in late winter. You can even add a compost for flowering plants every 20 to 25 days with watering. However, if the bushes are large or cover a very large area, a slow-release granular fertilizer can be used every 3 or 4 days, preferably in the spring, being rich in potassium for optimal flower development.

It is propagated by division of the rhizome or by seeds.

Regarding problems, this plant can be susceptible to diseases of the root apparatus with fungi, for which they must be treated with a systemic fungicide. In addition, as for pests, mealybugs are present, which can be eliminated with a broad-spectrum insecticide.

Image courtesy of: Jim McCulloch , Sonnia hill

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