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Video: Beautiful Ornamental Shrubs
Beautiful ornamental shrubs that adorn the garden from spring to autumn
Usually I buy ornamental plants at exhibitions in August - September. The purchase must be taken seriously.
It is better if the plant is with a closed root system (in a pot) and, moreover, an already flowering specimen. On it you can see not only the color of the inflorescences, but also determine which class it belongs to.
Sometimes sellers can cheat and sell, for example, a hydrangea that blooms on the shoots of last year and does not winter in the Northwest region, or even a potted houseplant. And one more important condition: the purchased hydrangea must have lignified shoots. Such a specimen will certainly not suffer after the first wintering.
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If there is no time and desire to tinker with capricious hydrangeas, then it is better to purchase a large-leaved hydrangea with spherical inflorescences blooming on the shoots of the current year, petiolate hydrangea and panicle hydrangea. Even if the shoots of these species freeze in winter, they quickly recover and bloom in the same year.
When planting hydrangeas in a permanent place, you need to remember that a young bush will not always be so small and miniature. In 3-4 years, it will already be an adult shrub that takes up a large living space. And so that later you do not have to transplant it, you need to immediately leave a lot of free space around the plant.
While the hydrangea is small, low flowers can be planted in the near-stem circle, which put up with the acidic soil. For example, under my hydrangeas, Corydalis grow. They bloom in early spring, when there are no leaves on the hydrangea yet, and when the leaves appear, the aerial part of the corydalis dies off, and it begins a dormant period.
In recent years, many new beautiful varieties of hydrangeas have appeared. So, in August 2012 at the exhibition, I bought a large-leaved hydrangea with double pink flowers. I hope that in the near future the breeders will delight us with other interesting varieties.
It is believed that hydrangea flowers can change color depending on the acidity of the soil. It is believed that the anthocyanin pigment contained in the cell sap of the flower parts gives the flowers a red (pink) color when the juice is acidic, and blue when it is alkaline. Therefore, in order for the hydrangea to have pink flowers, it must be planted in soil, which contains a large amount of peat and coniferous litter, and in order to get blue flowers, the shrub must be watered often with a special dye or ordinary alum. I do not agree with this statement.
If a person was born with dark hair, then no matter what they feed him, he will never become blond. The shoots of my hydrangeas, which I gave to friends, fell into a completely different soil with a different acidity and did not change the color of the flowers. Therefore, I believe that the variety should not change its varietal characteristics depending on the acidity of the soil.
The next, rather capricious shrub growing in my garden is the evergreen rhododendron. As soon as they went on sale, I bought up all the flowering plants, there were fifteen bushes on the site. I planted them first in a sunny place, on the south side of the house in acidic soil, as it should be.
The first years they grew well and bloomed profusely. For the winter, they were covered with old white sheets from the bright early spring sunlight. But this did not help, and in the spring the leaves on the bushes still "burned" in the sun. They turned brown and the plants died. This was because in early spring, when the sun was bright and the temperatures were positive, the leaves began to vegetate, and the ground was still frozen, and the root system did not work. From this, the rhododendrons died.
Every spring, it is imperative to spill the soil with very warm water as soon as the snow melts (approximately at the beginning of April) under the evergreen rhododendrons. And so that the leaves do not suffer from the bright spring sun, in the fall they need to be covered with a covering material or a white cloth, but not wrapped. If the plant is wrapped in covering material, then inside such a shelter there will be high temperatures in spring, the soil has not yet thawed, and the plant will die. It is best to stretch a white fabric or spunbond over the plant, make some kind of umbrella or hut, but do not wrap the plant!
A few years later, the remaining bushes of evergreen rhododendrons had to be transplanted under trees in a shady place. The rhododendrons liked this neighborhood, but for the winter we still cover the bushes with a white cloth. To do this, we drive in several high stakes around the bush and wrap a dense spunbond around them. We do not cover the bush from above. The shading height should be one and a half times the height of the plant.
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From the second half of May until late autumn, we make sure that the earthen lump under the bushes does not dry out, since the soil under them is very loose. Before winter, the ground under the bushes must be moist, otherwise the root system may freeze out.
Evergreen rhododendrons bloom in late May - early June. Old bushes, which are more than 8-10 years old, are falling apart, and the middle of the bush is bare, therefore, once every 3-4 years, each branch of the bush should be shortened by 1/3. It is better to do this after flowering - anyway, faded flowers must be removed. Many reference books advise you to prune the extended stems in the spring. But I think that this should not be done in spring, since there are buds at the end of the branches, and if you remove them in spring, then there will be no flowering this year. In winter, the leaves of deciduous rhododendrons curl up into a tube - this is normal for leaves. With the arrival of spring, they straighten.
Unlike evergreen rhododendrons, deciduous rhododendrons are not at all capricious and do not require much attention to themselves. The main thing is that the soil should be acidic, loose and breathable, the same as that of evergreen rhododendrons, but you do not need to cover them for the winter and you do not need to spill the soil under them with warm water in the spring.
They begin to grow when the soil thaws in spring. Deciduous rhododendrons are planted in full sun, it is better that the shrubs are protected from cold winds. They also bloom in late May - early June. Their flowering coincides with the flowering of evergreen rhododendrons. Abundant flowering every year, lasting 1.5-2 weeks. Flowers are collected in clusters, forming large balls. From a distance it seems as if it is one huge flower.
In the spring, every year, under the bushes, I apply a complex mineral fertilizer, such as azofoska or nitroammofoska, and mulch the ground around the bushes first with compost, then with coniferous spruce and pine litter, and on top with a layer of peat, trying not to cover the plant branches, preventing them from drying out.
Coniferous litter and peat must be applied every year, because rhododendrons exist only in symbiosis with the mycorrhiza of soil fungi, for the normal functioning of which an acidic, loose, nutritious and moderately moist soil is needed. The soil under the rhododendrons cannot be loosened, because they have a superficial root system. Weeds practically do not grow in acidic soil. From May to the second half of August I feed with liquid fertilizer for conifers, alternating with a solution of liquid manure with sapropel.
Many floriculture guides do not recommend applying organic and mineral fertilizers to acidic soil for rhododendrons, hydrangeas and garden blueberries, because fertilizers in acidic soil are not absorbed by plants. I do not agree with this statement.
As a result of the annual application of compost and mineral fertilizers for rhododendrons, hydrangeas and garden blueberries, my shrubs grow well and bloom luxuriantly, and their annual growth is at least 30 cm (for rhododendrons), and at least 50 cm for hydrangeas and garden blueberries. Ash it is also impossible to apply under rhododendrons, otherwise the acidity of the soil will change, and chlorosis will appear on the leaves - yellowing of the leaf plate.
After flowering in deciduous rhododendrons, flowers are not removed. I do not shorten the bushes, they form themselves. The bushes are lush and beautiful. Flower buds of all rhododendrons are laid at the end of the shoots in August.
A less capricious evergreen shrub is boxwood. I brought a small boxwood plant with elongated leaves from the Crimea. I planted him in a pit of fertile soil mixed with compost and horse dung. At first it grew very slowly, and this is not surprising, it had a period of acclimatization. In the spring I fed them with complex mineral fertilizers. The land around the bush in spring and autumn was mulched with rotted manure and compost.
For the winter, she wrapped the bush with a white dense spunbond so that in the spring its leaves would not burn from the bright sun. In the spring she sheared boxwood to give the bush a magnificent shape. A few years later, I was presented with an adult, zoned boxwood plant with rounded leaves. The transplant did not affect him in any way. I also cover this plant for the winter from the spring sun and from snow, which can break the branches.
Boxwood cuttings well. In the spring, you need to cut small twigs and plant in a greenhouse in a shaded place. The soil should not dry out. When young leaves appear, the plant has taken root. I plant them in the ground next spring. After the snowy winter of 2010/11, a small branch near the boxwood broke and I stuck it in the ground near the mother plant. She did not cover the twig with anything, but she kept the soil moist. After a month and a half, young shoots appeared on the cuttings. Now I have several boxwood plants of different ages. They can be used to form a hedge or, in the process of shearing, give the plant various forms, as is done in England or in the southern regions of Russia.
All parts of the boxwood plant (especially the leaves) are poisonous, so after cutting it, be sure to wash your hands with soap and water.
Skumpia was also brought from Crimea. For our climate, this shrub is completely unsuitable. In winter, his branches froze, they did not have time to lignify in autumn. In the spring, the shoots grew a little more than half a meter. For the winter, I had to pour a lot of rotted compost to the base of the bush. After the snowy winter of 2010/11, the skumpia came out. This shrub is for the southern regions of Russia, and it is not worth wasting time on it. Perhaps if I planted the scumpia in a large pot and in the fall brought it into a cool room to extend the growing season, and for the winter I would put it in the basement caisson, maybe it would live in my garden.
Tamarix, the comber
The next exotic plant tamarix (comb) is a shrub or small tree. It grows mainly in the Mediterranean, Crimea, in the Caspian steppes, in Central Asia. I saw beautiful spreading tamarix trees in Chelyabinsk in the Urals, and in the Crimea they grow along highways. This is mainly a plant of dry steppes. It is unpretentious to soils, it grows even on saline soils. The plant is undemanding to soil. In my garden, tamarix grows on well-cultivated soil, consisting of a mixture of rotted manure, compost, earth. In dry summers I do not water it often - once a week, because no one ever watering its congeners in the hot and dry steppes.
I got this plant in the early 90s. The planting material was brought from Holland, so the first years it grew very slowly, the branches were frozen in winter, but quickly grew back in the spring. In the winter, he has to tie his branches and bend them to the ground - this way he winters better. I lay spruce branches on the ground, lay tamarix on it and cover it with spruce branches from mice and hares. Its branches are flexible and do not break.
When cold and snowy weather sets in, I cover the whole plant with snow. In the spring, I tie the branches to a support so that they do not fall. Tamarix blooms in late May - early June on last year's shoots - lignified branches. Its flowers are very small, delicate pink-lilac color, collected in a brush. My tamarix has bloomed only a few times in his entire life. Most likely, this specimen does not like our unpredictable climate. I do not throw this plant away just because it looks like a coniferous plant. Its leaves are small, like scales. The branches are low, no more than 80 cm, it takes up little space. In spring, branches do not need to be protected from sunlight, because it is a deciduous shrub.
The next capricious exot is a tree-like peony. Better to get it in the spring with lignified shoots. I bought the first tree peony plant many years ago. It had green shoots and froze out in the first winter, despite the fact that I covered it very well for the winter.
It is best to purchase a plant with lignified shoots and at least 40 cm tall. Then you can not worry about his first winter. You need to plant a tree peony in a sunny place protected from the wind. In the first year, the tree peony is best planted in the ground in early June. Be sure to cover it with a spunbond from the sun's rays. Of course, it is best to plant the plant in a large pot in the first year and send it to the basement for the winter.
I plant tree peonies in a pit well filled with rotted manure, compost, wood ash with the addition of complex mineral fertilizer and AVA fertilizer (in one year). Be sure to apply complex mineral fertilizer and wood ash to the tree trunk every spring. This plant does not tolerate acidic soils. I feed tree peonies from mid-May to the second half of July with liquid manure with sapropel, alternating feeding with growth stimulants: Energen, HB-101, Ribav-Extra, Baikal EM-1.
In the second half of July, I add superphosphate and potassium fertilizer to the trunk circle. I no longer carry out liquid fertilizing. In hot dry weather I water abundantly. In the fall, I mulch the trunk circle with rotted manure and compost. In late autumn, I tie the tree-like peonies with spruce branches with needles down, and I still put buckets without a bottom on young plants. I put dry sawdust inside the bucket, cover it with a film on top so that the sawdust does not get wet. In winter, I cover this entire structure with snow.
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