Duchesnea is a creeping perennial plant that resembles a common garden strawberry. The culture is used for decorative purposes and is grown in plots, in apartments or greenhouses. The drooping stems of bushes in pots or pots placed on shelves in the house look very impressive. The shoots, like a liana, cling to the support and form a living carpet.
Ducheney will perfectly decorate the territory of the garden and give some originality. Openwork wide leaves leave an indelible impression after getting to know the plant. Bright yellowish buds stand out against the background of green foliage. Fading away, the buds turn into red berries, which, having reached maturity, are similar in shape to the fruits of cultivated strawberries.
Ducheney belongs to fast-growing perennials. If, for example, you plant a bush in June, then after a couple of months the plant will grow to the size of dense and lush thickets. Flowering can only be achieved through regular care of the duchenee. The living conditions have an impact on growth and development.
The discovery of the culture belongs to the famous botanist of French origin Duchenne in his field. Duchenei was named in his honor.
Ducheney was first discovered in southeast Asia. Gradually, ornamental strawberries spread to other continents. The natural habitat of culture is limited to the countries of Eurasia, South and North America.
In the scientific literature on plant growing, a perennial is characterized as a flexible herbaceous bush with a short rhizome and creeping shoots. The length of the thin stems is up to 1.5 m. As they grow older, a mustache appears, surrounded by a rosette of leaves. In contact with the ground, the rosette will soon take root. They go deep into the ground and serve as a reliable support.
The surface of the pale green leaves is rough, the tips are trifoliate, indented with small teeth. The foliage is oval. On the reverse side, the tubercles of the veins protrude, which are connected to a root socket.
Blooms in miniature single flowers. The diameter of the open bud is no more than 1.5 cm. The color is yellow or cream. The corolla is formed from 5 petals. Each flower consists of 30 stamens. The flowering phase takes almost the whole summer.
The culture bears fruit with rounded red berries covered with seeds on top. The berries do not have any taste or smell.
Most novice gardeners do not distinguish between duchenee and common strawberries. Both plants have similar appearance. However, in the strawberry, the berries are lowered, and the fruits of the duchenei stick out to the top.
There are only 2 types of perennials. For cultivation in the garden, use the Indian duchenea (Duchesnea indica). In some countries it is called Indian strawberry or cinquefoil.
Creeping shoots from 30 to 100 cm long. The internodes are able to take root. The foliage has a rich green tone, the surface is pubescent. A lush rosette is formed from the leaves. The buds are located singly on elongated peduncles. The diameter of the flowers painted in a yellow shade is from 1 to 1.5 cm. Berries against the background of greenery are striking. The size of the fruits does not exceed 2 cm. In addition to the attractive appearance, the berries do not have any nutritional benefits.
The varieties of Indian dushenei include:
The plant is quite light-loving, so it is better to plant bushes in well-lit corners of the garden or place them in light partial shade. The stems grow rapidly, which sometimes creates inconvenience for neighboring crops. It is more advisable to plant a duchenei under trees or shrubs. Lack of lighting affects flowering. Being constantly under the sun's rays, yellowing and drying of the leaves is observed. In hot weather, it is recommended to shelter strawberries from the sun.
A perennial can develop without problems on various types of soil. The preference is given to wet loams with a rich nutrient content.
Without regular and abundant watering, the growth of dushenei seedlings will be disrupted. During a drought, the amount of introduced moisture is increased. Watering is organized early in the morning or after sunset, so as not to burn the leaves. Then the bushes will lose their decorative qualities. Finish watering by weeding the soil. The tools are immersed in the ground no deeper than a couple of centimeters. The root system is aggressive and able to drive out any weeds, so there is no need to weed the crop.
Indian dushenei bushes are fed with solutions of mineral fertilizers 3-4 times a month. Guided by the dosage indicated on the package. An excess of nutrients in the substrate leads to the growth of deciduous mass and shoots. Flowering, on the contrary, fades into the background.
Ducheney is frost-resistant, is not afraid of the cold Eastern European climate, however, with a lack of snow, the risk of freezing of the roots increases. In order not to damage the rhizome and protect from severe frosts, the garden forms of Indian Potentilla are covered in the area with straw or spruce branches. Or, the ground part is wrapped in a woven material. With the warmth of spring, the shelter is removed and sanitized. The stems deformed during the winter and dry leaves are removed.
If the dusheney bushes grow in boxes or flowerpots, the containers are transferred to a closed room for the winter.
The perennial retains its attractive appearance only if it is timely pruned and processed from old and dried shoots. In place of the faded buds, fruits are formed - the main decoration of the bushes, so they are not plucked. It is allowed to pinch the berries after they darken or become soft.
Dusheney Indian / ornamental strawberry / Potentilla flower
The fast-growing exotic strawberry is threatened by aphids, scale insects and slugs. In order to prevent, the soil around the bushes is sprinkled with pebbles or crushed eggshells. If insects have already managed to harm the duchenei, insecticidal spraying is used. The preparations are dissolved in water according to the instructions that the manufacturer usually indicates on the packaging with chemicals.
The accumulation of water in the root area leads to the development of putrefactive processes. In order not to damage the bark neck, adhere to moderate watering. As soon as the topsoil dries up, the plant is watered again. On hot summer days, watering is done more often.
Shoots and seeds are used for breeding duchenei. Shoots are divided into nodes. Or they resort to dividing the bushes.
Indian strawberries reproduce successfully with tendrils. The mustache is rooted in the ground without separating from the main bush. It is preferable to choose a large rosette with healthy leaves, which is pressed to the surface of the ground and secured with wooden clothespins. When the scion sprouts, it is separated and provided with diligent care.
To perform vegetative propagation, take root shoots with three or four nodes and separate them from the main bush. Then they are planted directly into the ground or in low containers, until the root system gets stronger.
The division is carried out in the first half of the year. The bush is carefully removed from the soil, freed from adhering lumps of earth and cut into pieces. Sections are smeared with crushed charcoal. The resulting cuttings must be planted in different pots.
Growing dushenei from seeds is rarely practiced by gardeners on their plots. Unlike the above methods, this process is time-consuming. Seed material is readily available from specialized stores.
First, the seeds are stratified for 7 days, then germination will occur much faster. The stratified material is sown in small containers filled with loose soil. The surface is watered with a solution of potassium permanganate. Spread the grains in a thin layer and sprinkle lightly with earth.
Greenhouse conditions are created for crops. The containers are covered with foil or glass and stored in a warm place where the air temperature is not lower than 200C. Seed containers are regularly ventilated and sprayed with water from a spray bottle.
When the seedlings acquire the first leaves, the plants dive into separate flowerpots. A mixture of clay soil, sand and humus is used as a substrate. Dusheney blooms in the first year of life.
The hardened seedlings are transferred to fresh air in warm weather, when the spring frosts have passed. Prepare a hole in advance where the bush will grow. Young strawberries are transplanted, leaving an earthen lump. So that there is no stagnation of water in the future, a drainage layer is provided at the bottom of the pit.
The bush is placed in the center of the dug hole, the roots are spread and covered with earth.
The bright green leaves and red fruits of Indian strawberries have a unique decorative effect. The plant will definitely transform the garden area. Clinging shoots twine around fences and gazebos, resembling a hedge.
Belonging to the group of ground covers, the dusheney grown in pots will perfectly fit into the interior of the veranda or other rooms.
Cultivated varieties can be found in greenhouses, on alpine slides or rockeries. Strawberry bushes are able to strengthen the slopes and boundaries of reservoirs.
The fruits of this perennial have found application in pharmacology. Medicines made with the addition of dusheney improve the performance of the liver and pancreas. Herbal decoctions and pomace soothe the body in case of nervous disorders and insomnia.