the verbascum genus brings together about three hundred species of perennial and annual herbaceous plants, native to Europe and Asia; some species are also widespread in Italy, even as weeds, such as V. thapsus, called the Barbasso badger. V. chaixii produces a dense rosette of dark green leaves, rough, lanceolate, even 30-40 cm long; in summer, until autumn, a thick erect stem develops from the rosette of leaves, bearing a panicle of star-shaped flowers, white or pink; there are numerous hybrids of the most varied colors, with pistils in contrasting color. They generally begin to flower from the second year after the development of the basal rosette; the stem carrying the flowers can reach 150-180 cm in height.
It is good to plant the specimens of mullein in place of the sunny garden where they can receive at least a few hours of direct sunlight during the day; in fact, the mullein it cannot bear to be grown in shady areas, since, in this case, it cannot grow and develop at its best and does not produce flowers. Plants of verbascum they are rather rustic and resistant, for this reason, they are not affected by the lower temperatures and the harsh climate of the winter season, as they can be grown outside without particular cultivation measures.
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Generally the mullein is satisfied with the rains, even if it is advisable to water the plant in case of prolonged drought, especially in the summer season, when the external temperatures are rather high, a phase which coincides with the flowering period; in this way it is ensured that it is more vigorous and lasting.
It is good to check that the water supply does not cause the formation of water stagnations which are harmful for this kind of plant.
During the cold months the specimens of verbascum they do not need watering and they can be suspended.
The specimens belonging to this variety, given their good rusticity, develop well in any soil, as long as an excellent water drainage is guaranteed as water stagnation is harmful for this variety.
Verbascums generally tend to grow best in poor, stony soils requiring nothing more than a good degree of drainage that avoids overly moist soils.
The multiplication of these perennial plants generally occurs by seed; the plants produce dozens of fertile seeds every year and do not present particular difficulties to be cultivated, developing with great ease. The seeds can be placed directly in the ground where their cultivation is planned, without the need to set up a seedbed.
Mullein - Verbascum: Parasites and diseases
Given the great rusticity of this kind of plant, it is hardly affected by parasites or diseases if in the correct cultivation conditions; in humid places the plants tend to deteriorate rapidly as water stagnation or excessive humidity cause the formation of root rot which can be very particular for this type of perennial plant.