Sweet Alyssum: Care, Growing Guide, & Facts
Table of Contents
Sweet Alyssum Plant Description
A beautiful carpet of small blooms, sweet alyssum, may be used to coat any garden or landscape. The low-growing foliage, which is native to Europe, spreads swiftly and covers the ground with small cross-shaped, four-petaled blooms within two months of planting.
It has hairy gray-green leaves that are thin and lance-shaped. Sweet alyssum is an easy-to-grow cool-season flower that can be planted in early April after the threat of frost has passed.
In frost-free regions, sweet alyssum may be cultivated all through the fall and winter. In the summer, most kinds will fade, but they will bloom again in the fall. It’s a perennial herbaceous plant.
The flowers are usually white, pink, or purple in colour and are seen in Europe. The blooming period for these plants is usually spring or fall, and the type of soil they require is moist but well-drained, with a neutral to acidic pH.
They can grow up to 3 to 9 inches tall and 6 to 12 inches wide.
How To Care Sweet Alyssum?
If it comes to simplicity of maintenance, sweet alyssum is unrivalled, and it can withstand both heat and drought. The blooms have a vibrant, honey-like aroma and are mustard family members; they self-sow and may produce vivid colour year after year, especially in warmer areas.
Although aphids can become a nuisance, especially when the plants are stressed, sweet alyssum is normally trouble-free. Sweet alyssum plants provide a living mulch beneath taller plants as they spread.
Sweet alyssum may be used to border walks and walls, or to fill nooks and crannies in the garden. Hanging baskets and pots benefit from the tight, free-flowering plants.
How To Grow Sweet Alyssum?
Sweet alyssum prefers full light, but not lengthy periods of drought. A somewhat shaded setting would work best for this plant if your region is very hot and dry.
However, bear in mind that too much shade might cause stem rot or leaf blight if the leaves and soil do not entirely dry out. Normally, sweet alyssum should be planted where it will receive six to eight hours of sunshine every day.
Sweet alyssum thrives on medium-moisture, well-draining soils. They tolerate a wide range of planting conditions and may be found on sandy beaches and dunes, as well as farmed fields, cliffs, slopes, and even crevices in sidewalks and walls. In marshy soil or where drainage is a concern, the plants will struggle.
Water your sweet alyssum plants once a week with a minimum of one inch of water, and more occasionally during hot or dry times.
Make sure the water drains properly; else, the plant may rot. If you put your sweet alyssum on stone, you’ll need to water it more frequently, and the same goes for hot or dry weather.
iv. Temperature and Humidity
Horticulturalists may be capable of growing sweet alyssum throughout the year in temperate climates, albeit the plants themselves are short-lived.
They often self-seed so profusely that, while it appears that the same plants are thriving all year, new seedlings are filling in.
Sweet alyssum plants blossom again and again, despite the fact that many types cease flowering in the heat, only to bloom again in the fall. If you live in a region with a lot of humidity, you should reduce the amount of water you give your plants.
If your soil is poor, in-ground sweet alyssum plants usually do not require fertiliser. Container plants will require monthly feedings using a water-soluble fertiliser.
Varieties of Sweet Alyssum
Sweet alyssum comes in numerous different varieties:
1. ‘Easter Bonnet’ is an early flowering cultivar with lavender or white flowers.
2. ‘New Carpet of Snow’ is a dwarf cultivar with little white blooms.
3. ‘Pastel Carpet’ is a variety with pink, lavender, and cream blossoms.
4. ‘Snow Crystals’ is a mounding type with transparent white blooms that is neat and tidy.
Sweet Alyssum Seed
Sweet alyssum can be grown from seed or from plants, which are both commonly accessible at nurseries. However, some new varieties are not available as seeds.
Simply spread the seeds on the soil and softly press them down so they make excellent contact with the ground while remaining exposed to light. Keep the soil wet until the seeds germinate, then water as needed.
When the soil feels warm to the touch, direct sow outside, or start alyssum seed indoors approximately eight weeks before your last frost period. Once developed, alyssum is cold resilient, but fragile transplants are not.
Sweet Alyssum Pruning
Sweet alyssum plants that are deadheaded will continue to blossom and set new buds. Shearing a huge drift of plants by one-third is a better alternative than deadheading if you have a lot of them.
Some types may self-seed rapidly, but the plants will tend to return to the gangly species, so trimming will help.
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