Cute as a button, this wonderful cool season annual has snapdragon-like flowers that come in shades of cream, yellow, blue, orange, crimson, pink, and bi-colours -- almost every colour of the rainbow, with orange being the most common. Used as a long lasting cut flower.
Common name: Nemesia Color: Blue Red Pink Orange Yellow White Purple Bloom time: Late spring to summer Height: Approximately one foot tall and six inches wide. Difficulty level: Easy
Planting & Care
Sunlight: Full Sun or Part Shade. They prefer cool to moderate climates. In hotter areas they will need light shading.
Soil: They require constantly moist, well draining, rich soil.
Water: Regular watering. Good drainage.
Fertilizer: Feed twice monthly with a liquid all purpose fertilizer, or monthly with a slow release food.
Step 1: Planting Nemesia From Seed Nemesia seeds should be planted depending on your climate during the summer months.
If you usually have warm to hot summer months, it s best to plant the seeds indoors during early to mid winter and transplant them to the flower bed as soon as the final frost of the season has passed, so the plants will bloom in early spring when the weather is still fairly cool.
If you live in a cool, mild climate, the seeds can be planted indoors about 6-8 weeks before the final expected frost.
Planting the seeds indoors: Starting your Nemesia seeds indoors allows you to have them ready for planting outside as soon as the final frost of the season has passed.
Plant your Nemesia seeds indoors eight weeks before the final frost.
The following steps will guide you through the process: Indoors, it s best to plant the seeds in peat pots filled with seed starting potting soil.
Sprinkle a few Nemesia seeds into each pot and cover them with just a thin layer of soil.
Using a spray bottle, spritz the seeds with enough water to moisten the vermiculite.
The seedlings will be ready for transplant to the flower garden or container garden after the final frost of the season.
About a week before you plan on transplanting the seedlings, put them outside in some shade to get them used to being in the changing weather.
Planting the seeds outdoors: After the final frost of the season, loosen up the soil on the flower bed where you plan on planting the Nemesia seeds.
Be sure to loosen the soil deep enough for the roots to grow.
Plant the seeds directly into the soil, about 1/4" deep.
Water the seeds with a watering can or gardening hose.
Step 2: Transplanting to the flower bed Some plants require a little more work when it comes to preparing the soil they will be planted in, and Nemesia is no exception.
Nemesia enjoy a rich, compost filled, well draining soil.
For the flowerbed, start by loosening up the soil with a shovel, making sure to break up any large clumps.
Since the Nemesia like slightly acidic soil7 with a soil pH balance of 6-7, test the soil using a Soil Testing Kit.
If the pH balance is too low or too high, be sure to amend the soil before going any further.
A few days before transplanting the Nemesia, add about 2 to 4 inches of manure or compost to the soil.
This will not only act as a natural fertilizer but will also help to keep the soil moist and drain well.
When you are ready for transplanting, remove the plant from the pot (unless it is in a peat pot in that case, the entire pot can be put into the ground).
Check to make sure the roots aren t root bound.
If they are, losen them with your fingers.
Place the plant directly into the hole and cover the roots with soil to the base of the plant.
Give the plant a good drink of water and fertilize using quick release fertilizer, organic fertilizer, or liquid fertilizer.
Step 3: Caring for Nemesia If you live in an area that has really hot summers, it would be best to plant Nemesia in a part of your garden that gets partial shade during the hottest time of the day.
Be sure to always keep the soil where the Nemesia is planted moist at all times, especially in the hotter times of the year.
Deadheading is not required, but by removing spent flowers you will keep the plant flowering longer through the year.
You can make your Nemesia plants bushier by pinching the ends off of some of the limbs.
Just be careful not to pinch off too much or you could damage the plant! Use a fertilizer to keep the plant growing strong and blooming.
It s best to use a fertilizer made for annual plants but any multi-purpose liquid fertilizer will be fine.
Pests aren t much of a problem for Nemesia.
If pests do infect your Nemesia, use an organic pesticide or home made soap spray to take care of them.
Nemesia are prone to the disease known as Dampening Off.
Use a fungicidal drench to prevent against the disease.
As blooming slows in mid-Summer, cut the plant back and the flowers will soon reappear for the remainder of the season.
Use Ornamental use:
Use them for edgings, in rock gardens and walls, and for borders.
They re splendid container plants and make good cut flowers, too.