The princes' dicotyledonous flowering plants are not as common in the garden plots as our beloved clematis, but in the gardens of true lovers of the natural landscape, these woody vines find a worthy place. Flowers princes are indispensable when creating compositions in a natural style, as their appearance is as close as possible to the natural flora.
Knyazhiki - This is a small group of natural species and varieties and hybrids derived from them, on most signs very similar to clematis, but having a fundamental difference in the structure of the flower: inside the perianth, consisting of four or more colored sepals, are petals.
This circumstance was the basis for their separation into an independent botanical genus - Knyazhik (Atragene). The genus is not numerous, according to various estimates it includes from 7 to 13 species. However, in some classifications, these plants are considered as a garden group (Atragene Group) among groups of clematis.
Photos and descriptions of popular types and varieties of princes can be found on this page.
The merits of the princes' flowers
According to the description, the flowers of the princes are not as varied in shape as the flowers of clematis - they are mostly bell-shaped, they are simple and terry, of different colors.
As can be seen in the photo, the petals of the princes' flowers are small (often no longer than the perianth segments) and, as a rule, are so inconspicuous that their presence practically does not affect the decorative effect:
But because of the characteristic drooping shape of flowers hanging on long stalks, many princes find slender clematis. The princes are blooming earlier than clematis - in May-June and only on the shoots of the last year, so the shoots after flowering are not cut off.
The great dignity of princes in their high frost resistance, they confidently winter in the Moscow region, withstanding temperatures down to minus 35-40 ° С without removing them from supports. In addition, they are extremely resistant to the lack of light and can grow and bloom for many years under conditions of only reflected light.
Sometimes in the warm summer princes can bloom again in August and September. They belong to the first group of pruning. Knyazhiki not cut, more precisely, occasionally spend rejuvenating pruning. After four to five years, the overgrown bushes inevitably become bare from the bottom, which in many cases reduces their decorative effect.
Therefore, it is believed that every few years they must be completely cut to the ground to stimulate the growth of young shoots. This should be done immediately after flowering (in June) so that during the summer new shoots will grow, which will give flowering in the spring of next year.
Sometimes, in order not to weaken the bushes, especially the old ones, they act as follows. If the heavily lignified shoots can still be divided, some of them after flowering are carefully cut to the ground, and the second part is left to vegetate.
The next year after flowering, the remaining old shoots are cut out, thereby completely renewing the entire vegetative mass.
Due to its high frost resistance (minus 40-45 ° С), princes are especially interesting for cultivation in regions with rather severe winters. Therefore, at present, a variety of varieties with flowers, of various shapes and sizes - simple and terry, drooping bell-shaped and open with soaring sepals, diameter from 3-4, see to 7-9, see.
Types and varieties of garden princes from the group of clematis
In culture and breeding work, the following types of princes are mainly used:
Alpine prince (Atragene alpina)
Large-chained prince (Atragene macropetala)
Korean prince (Atragene koreana)
Siberian prince (Atragene sibirica)
Okhotsk prince (Atragene ochotensis)
Fori prince (Atragene fauriei)
Western Prince (Atragene occidentalis)
The most popular varieties of princes in the Moscow region are:
Ballet Skirt (macropetala)
The flowers are pink with a slight warm tint, terry, wide, creamy inside, diameter 5-6, see. It blooms on the shoots of last year, in May -June. The length of the creeper is 1,6-2 m. Recommended regulating and rejuvenating pruning once every 4-5 years.
Blue Princess (alpina)
The flowers are purple-blue, greenish cream inside, double, cm 4 diameter, fragrant. Blossoms on the shoots of last year, in May - June, sometimes again in September. The length of the creeper is 2,2-2,5 m. Recommended regulating and rejuvenating pruning once every 4-5 years.
The flowers of this variety of princes are of an intense lilac color, simple, inside are white and yellow, with a diameter of 5, see. It blooms on the shoots of the last year, in May - June. Differs exclusively abundant flowering. It can be successfully grown in containers. The length of the creeper 2-3 m-Recommended regulatory and anti-aging pruning once a year in 4-5.
The flowers are blue-violet, simple, open, see 5 diameter.
Look at the photo - inside the flowers of this variety of princes are white-yellow:
It blooms on the shoots of last year, in May - June, sometimes again in the second half of summer. An ideal cultivar for growing in a container is Frankiepax. The length of the creeper is 2,5-3 m. Recommended regulating and rejuvenating pruning once every 4-5 years.
The flowers are intense pink, simple, creamy inside, 4-5 diameter, see. Blooms profusely, on the shoots of last year, in May and June. The length of the creeper is 2,2-2,8 m. Recommended regulating and rejuvenating pruning once every 4-5 years.
Markham's Pink (macropetala)
The flowers are pink, terry, wide, lighter inside, 5 diameter, see. This garden variety of princesses from the group of clematis blooms profusely, on the shoots of last year, in May - June. Great for growing in containers and in full sun. The length of the creeper is 2-2,5 m. Recommended regulating and rejuvenating pruning once every 4-5 years.
Violet Purple (alpina)
The flowers are bright crimson-purple, simple, open, yellowish-cream inside, 5-6 diameter, see. It blooms on the shoots of last year, in May - June. Ideal for cultivation in containers. Perfect for small gardens. The length of the creeper is 2,5-3 m. Recommended regulating and rejuvenating pruning once every 4-5 years.
This collection contains photos of princes, described above: