Plant brunner (lat.brunnera), or brunera, belongs to the genus of perennial herbaceous plants of the Borage family, numbering only three species, whose representatives grow in Eastern and Western Siberia, Asia Minor and the Caucasus. Brunner's flower got its Latin name in honor of the Swiss traveler and botanist Samuel Brunner.
In culture, two types of brunner are grown - large-leaved and Siberian. Brunner's landscape design is usually used for curbs and stable decorative groups in mixborders.
Read more about growing Brunner below.
Brunner is a perennial herb with a height of 45-50 cm with branched pubescent stems, large whole broad-heart-shaped leaves on long petioles and blue, forget-me-not-like flowers 5-10 mm in diameter, collected in corymbose or paniculate inflorescences, because of which her is called a forget-me-not. Brunner blooms from April for a month, but can bloom again in the fall. However, unlike the forget-me-not, the Brunner flower has not a yellow spot inside, but a white one. Brunner's fruit is a nut.
Brunner forms beautiful thickets, it is unpretentious, very attractive and winter-hardy, but does not like heat and drought. In one place, the plant can grow up to 15 years.
In nature, Brunner grows in forests, so he loves moisture and tolerates shade well. Based on this, you should choose a site for her. In hot regions, it is better to plant Brunner in the shade so that the plant does not die from the strong sun. In cooler areas, you can plant the plant in partial shade or in places that are not illuminated by the sun in the afternoon. In direct sun, Brunner can grow only near bodies of water.
The soil for the plant needs clay, moist, and the Siberian brunner in this regard is much more demanding than the large-leaved brunner. Planted and transplanted to Brunner in late July or early August. In the spring, transplanting is fraught with diseases for the plant, since it is most vulnerable at this time of the year. It is possible to transplant in the spring only a large-leaved Brunner, and only with a large clod of earth. Brunners land on a cloudy day or in the evening.
Planting brunner large-leaved is carried out, as a rule, simultaneously with the division of the plant. The faded bush is dug up, the ground part is cut off, the roots are cleaned from the soil by soaking them in a bucket of water, and then the bush is divided into parts, following the natural collapse of the rhizome. If necessary, you can cut the roots with a sharp, sterile knife. Each cut must have a part of the rhizome and a renewal bud of the next year. Delenki are planted in wells prepared in advance, not forgetting to water the plants abundantly after planting.
Brunner Siberian reproduces by segments of the rhizome, which lies very close to the surface. The rhizome is dug up, old and decayed areas are removed, broken into pieces 4-6 cm long so that each has a living bud of renewal, after which the parts of the rhizome are planted to a depth of 2-3 cm and watered abundantly.
After planting, the plot of land around the Brunners is mulched with sawdust, limestone, tree bark, you can even use coffee grounds or ashes as mulch.
Cultivation of Siberian brunners and large-leaved brunners have their own differences. Brunner's large-leaved is decorative throughout the growing season, and with proper planting (in the shade, in wet soil), one could not remember it until autumn. But this type of brunner has weed problems, so it has to be weeded regularly, and it is not recommended to loosen the ground around it, since the root system of the brunner is located very close to the surface.
As for the Siberian brunner, after the end of flowering, it quickly loses its decorative effect, brown spots appear on its leaves, they dry out, and it is better to remove them, of course, in July, especially since in mid-August new leaves will appear on the brunner, which will keep before frost.
Siberian Brunner is not afraid of weeds, it is not necessary to loosen the land around it for the same reason as in the area with large-leaved brunner, and it does not need watering - natural precipitation will be enough. However, in an abnormally dry summer, both Brunner species need watering - the state of its leaves will tell you that it is time to water the plant.
In the section on planting brunners, we told you about the methods of plant propagation by dividing the bush and dividing the rhizome. By the way, variegated Brunner forms reproduce in these very ways - vegetative. It is also possible to reproduce the species Brunner by the seed method, but the plant sets the seeds poorly - it does not have time due to frosts. Therefore, for growing brunners from seeds, it is better to purchase seed in the store.
Small Brunner seeds are sown in open ground before winter, but if you decide to sow seeds in spring, keep in mind that they need three to four months of stratification, for which the Brunner seeds must be placed in a refrigerator or sown in a box and buried in the snow for the winter ... However, there is no point in cultivating Brunners from seeds, since it easily reproduces vegetatively, and in addition, self-seeding of Brunners happens very often.
If the summer is rainy, the brunner in the garden can get sick with brown spot, from which spots will begin to appear on its leaves. It is also possible to damage the plant with powdery mildew. In the fight against these diseases, the timely removal of the diseased parts of the plant and the treatment of Brunner with a fungicide - Bordeaux mixture, for example, will help you.
Of the pests, aphids and whiteflies are dangerous to the plant, which are destroyed by treating brunners with a solution of Actellik or Karbofos.
Planting and caring for a brunner in the open field does not imply any difficulties, and there will be no problems when preparing a plant for wintering. Brunner leaves do not die off themselves for the winter, so they should be cut off. The plant hibernates well without shelter, however, on the eve of winter, it is better to mulch the soil on the site with brunner with compost, peat or humus.
In nature, it lives in the Caucasus Mountains, so the Germans call it "Caucasian forget-me-not." It grows in a bush - branched, roughly pubescent leafy stems up to 30-40 cm high extend from the rhizome.The leaves are basal, oblong, heart-shaped with a sharp top, on long petioles, dark green on the upper side of the plate, rough and pubescent on the lower , and therefore grayish. Dark blue flowers up to 7 mm in diameter with a white spot in the middle, collected in apical corymbose-paniculate inflorescences, bloom in late April and fade in a month.
Repeated flowering may begin in warm autumn. This species has been in culture since the 19th century. The best varieties of large-leaved brunner:
grows in the forests of Sayan and Altai. This plant is more spectacular and larger than the large-leaved brunner. It has a long rhizome up to 1 cm thick, single glandular-pubescent stems up to 60 cm high. Unlike large-leaved brunner, this type of plant does not form a bush, but thickets. The basal leaves of the Siberian Brunner are long-petiolate, cordate, dense and wrinkled, and the stem leaves are sessile, almost lanceolate. Flowers, dark blue with a white eye, up to 5 mm in diameter, make up complex paniculate inflorescences. Siberian brunner blooms from May for three weeks.
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Brunner can be grown from seed at home and then planted outdoors.
Seed material is purchased at a flower shop. In winter, they are kept in the refrigerator, where they are stratified. In the spring, the seeds are sown in a box, and when a pair of real leaves appear on them, they are planted in separate containers. After hardening, the bushes grown in containers are planted in late summer or early autumn in open ground.
Home-grown seedlings are planted in pre-dug small holes.
If a gardener wants to sow seeds directly into the ground, then he must do it in the fall. During the winter, they will naturally go through the process of aging in cold conditions (stratification).