Facelia, cultivation and care: from the flower to its nectar, from the seeds to the bearing of the plant. All information on how cultivate phacelia tanacetifolia.
Therefacelia tanacetifoliais an annual plant with an upright habit. It reaches one meter in height and is appreciated for its ownflowers. Therefaceliait is popular for its nectar and pollen: the flowers are highly rich in pollen and nectar, however the flavor does not return particular organoleptic notes as is the case with orange blossom or chestnut honey where the presence of aromas is strongly characteristic.
Its botanical namePhacelia tanacetifolia, is linked to the presence of pinnate leaves that resemble those of tansy.
Thereplantit is native to northern Mexico and California. It has been present in Europe since the 19th century.
Therecultivation of Phacelia tanacetifoliait is implemented above all for the production of forage, for the production of honey or for the practice of green manure.
With the practice of green manure, Phacelia tanacetifolia releases large quantities of nitrogen into the soil. It also has a control action on weeds thanks to the release of chemicals that inhibit their growth.
How to cultivate facelia?
The plant can be sown from spring to late summer. We recommendsow faceliain spring so as to obtain more abundant blooms.
Therefloweringoccurs approximately 60 days after sowing and ifacelia flowerslast for about a month.
For the practice of green manure, however, sowing in the late summer period is recommended.
How to sow the facelia
The phacelia seeds, to germinate, must be buried. Germination does not occur when the seeds remain on the surface. How to do? If you do not have a seeder, you can broadcast sowing and then rake the surface and make sure to bury the seeds about 2 - 3 cm deep.
How many seeds to use?
For green manure with phacelia we recommend 10 - 13 kg of seeds per hectare, to be sown in late summer.
For the production of honey and therefore to obtain good quality nectar, it is advisable not to go beyond 8 - 10 kg of seeds per hectare of land. By lowering the quantity of seeds, you will give more space to flowering which will be more abundant for each single cultivated facelia.
Facelia, bees and honey
Therefaceliais a melliferous plant: theflowerproduces high quality pollen and nectar, capable of attracting theforaging beesthat collect nectar and pollen.
Among the Italian unifloral honeys there is no phacelia honey. It is found in different percentages in wildflower honey. Thefacelia applesit is mainly produced in Eastern Europe, in Hungary, for example, it is producedphacelia honeyof great quality.
Facelia honey has a very light color, a delicate smell and aroma and a sweet but not particularly characteristic taste.
The production ofhoneyit can reach and exceed 10 quintals / ha and for this reason it is of interest to many beekeepers.
It is not easy to find the seeds of this plant. If, during a walk, you notice specimens ofphacelia tanacetifolia, you can collect the flowers to use to decorate the house: the flowers, once withered, will drop small seeds that you can use in your garden. The multiplication of this plant is very simple, so much so that some gardeners treat it like facelias as invasive and weed plants.
For the purchase of seeds, you can contact your trusted nursery who can request them for you. Alternatively you can try the online purchase: the seeds ofphacelia tanacetifoliathey are marketed to give life to flower meadows but above all for the green manure technique.
On Amazon, a pack of one kilogram of seeds is offered at a price of 17.50 euros, the only drawback is that it comes from Germany and you will have to pay about 9 euros for shipping costs. For all information and to purchase phacelia tanacetifolia seeds, please refer to the official product page on Amazon:Phacelia seeds, mega Pack 1000 grams.