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Introduction Of Southern Plants To The North
Introduction Of Southern Plants To The North

Video: Introduction Of Southern Plants To The North

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acclimatization of plants
acclimatization of plants

Japanese quince and chestnut

Gardeners, when acquiring a plant, always try to find out whether it belongs to a particular species or variety, but usually they hardly pay attention to which subspecies or form it belongs to, and even more so to where, from which region, this plant was delivered. This is the reason for many failures in plant cultivation and introduction.

This is especially true of those species or varieties that have an extensive distribution area. Botanists, foresters and breeders have long known that it is not recommended to move even seeds, let alone cuttings and seedlings, more than 100-200 km from the place where their parents grow. Otherwise, they will grow much worse than local ones.

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For example, Scots pine seedlings, the same as in our North-West, but grown from seeds taken near Kursk and brought to the Leningrad Region, will freeze here and grow poorly, although the locals do not suffer at all. The same thing happens with many varieties.

That is why it is not recommended to purchase seedlings of the same varieties that have been growing in our country for a long time, for example, Antonovka or Autumn striped, etc., but grown somewhere in the south - in Ukraine, in Moldova, in the black earth regions. In part, this applies even to plants brought from the middle zone. The seedlings grown there look more attractive than our thin twigs - powerful, tall, nice to look at. But believe me - they will grow with us much worse.

They will be chilly, beaten by frosts, and in a few years they will lag behind the seemingly unsightly seedlings from local nurseries. Do not pursue the appearance, do not buy large-sized seedlings, especially on the market. They are southerners. They should be purchased only in local nurseries - it is safer. As you can see, cases with pine and apple varieties are examples of pure acclimatization, since they have an extensive area, which includes both regions.

The specimens transferred so far will have to adapt for a long time to new conditions, and this is fraught with lagging in growth and development, and sometimes death. Of course, some plant species, although they are southern, are so winter-hardy by nature that they can well grow in our North, for example, lilacs - common and Hungarian introduced (transferred to a new place of residence) without acclimatization, but this is rather an exception to the rule …

But even then we obviously do not have enough summer warmth for them, at home they are accustomed to a longer growing season. That is why, unlike our birches and aspens, they stand in green foliage until the very frost. And, apparently, they will not soon fully adapt to our climate. Some rather plastic southern species can be introduced gradually, moving north and north with their simultaneous acclimatization, i.e. adaptation to local conditions.

However, this process is possible only with compulsory seed reproduction, moreover, with seeds taken without fail from the northern border of their previous stage of introduction and acclimatization. This happened, for example, with white acacia (its more correct name is pseudo-acacia robinia). Initially, it was introduced on the Black Sea coast, then it was promoted to the Black Earth region, then to the Middle Belt, and finally to the North-West.

Now it grows well in the Leningrad region, but only if it is bred with local seeds. If you sow seeds taken from the south, then most of the seedlings will die, and the rest will freeze along the line of the snow cover. The reason is that they did not undergo acclimatization, did not adapt to northern conditions. If we want to move them north, they will have to go through the whole long way of getting used to new conditions again.

So introduction is the relocation of any plant species to new territories, where they have not grown before. In turn, it is subdivided into naturalization and domestication. The first is when a plant is planted in the wild, and it is very plastic, and the conditions are as close as possible to its needs, or even coincide with the conditions of its homeland.

So, in the conditions of the Leningrad region, some species of larch, Siberian pine (called cedar in our country), Weymutov pine and some other species can be planted in nature, and they will grow and even multiply without further human intervention. Domestication is not only the transfer of a plant to a new habitat, but also its domestication.

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For example, most of our vegetable and fruit plants are not only introduced - relocated to new conditions, but also domesticated. And they can grow in new conditions only under the supervision and support of a person, without his leaving they will die and disappear without a trace. Such are, for example, cucumbers, their homeland is hot India; peppers - from Central America, pear - from the Caucasus, etc.

But the apple tree is ours, local, however, the northernmost border of its natural distribution runs along the North-West, its center is approximately the Kursk region, and it is from there that most of its folk varieties are. The same can be said about currants - they are local in origin, therefore they are so winter-hardy. Cherries and plums are from the Caucasus.

But it is interesting that some domesticated plants, both local (the same currant) and introduced (irgairga, chokeberry) can run wild, moving again into the wild, where birds usually carry their seeds. From apple cores scattered by people, apple trees often appear along the roads.

acclimatization of plants
acclimatization of plants

White acacia reached the Leningrad region

Many gardeners would like to engage in introduction (first of all, of course, domestication, and acclimatization, because it is much easier than breeding, and is available to almost everyone), but they do not know, in general, not complicated rules for their implementation. Here they are:

1. It is practically pointless to transplant adult plants and their parts (cuttings, etc.), there will be no sense. Transplanting young seedlings is somewhat more promising, but even when planting them, luck is too rare and accidental. Plants should be propagated by seed only during introduction and acclimatization.

2. It is desirable to take seeds from the northern border of the plant. Or, in a high-altitude plan, from specimens growing high in the mountains.

3. Sow a lot. Having sown hundreds and thousands, one can hope to select several winter-hardy plants with tasty fruits (or other useful properties) that have managed to adapt to new, more severe conditions for them. Dozens of seeds usually do nothing.

4. It is better to sow seeds fresh, not dried, freshly removed from the fruit, or stored in sphagnum or damp sand. Don't sow frail seeds.

5. It is better to sow seeds before winter, and not stratify. If you do not want or cannot in the beds, then sow in boxes with soil, which then must be put on the street (but not on the balcony) and covered with snow. Already during this period, even inside the seed, future plants begin to adapt to new living conditions.

6. The sprouted seedlings must be looked after (in the minimum required volume): weed, loosened, watered. But they should not be fertilized, or they will be pampered, less resilient, and eventually die. But you should not plant on too skinny soil, not suitable for this species.

7. During domestication and acclimatization of more southerly plants, and this is almost always the case, they should be sown and transplanted to places protected from northern and northwestern winds, and generally in a calm place. Wind always negatively affects the results of the introduction.

8. In many plant species, seedlings and young seedlings are less resistant to unfavorable conditions (first of all, to frost and frost), therefore, in order for them to get stronger, they can be slightly covered for a year or two. But if they suffer greatly at an older age, such plants must be ruthlessly discarded.

9. One should always strive to obtain seeds from introduced plants as early as possible and to sow them. Plants of the second, and even more so the third generation will be much more adapted to local conditions, which will already be native to them. As a result, they will hardly suffer from adverse factors, they will become the founders of a new, stable form. And future generations will be even more adaptable.

acclimatization of plants
acclimatization of plants

Cherry - Caucasian guest

The most promising breeds for domestication and acclimatization in the Northwest may be: black elderberry, white mulberry and fodder, quince, especially if it is Severnaya variety seeds, southern varieties of cherry, sweet cherry, plum, apple, pear and other fruit species.

So if you want to grow something new, unusual in yourself - do not spare seeds and labor, and everything will work out. Stock up only with patience, you will need a lot of it. I.V. Michurin, by the way, sowed seeds in poods during introduction and acclimatization! True, then he switched to selection, when only dozens of seeds could be selected for sowing. But this is a much more complicated matter.

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