How to grow juniper?
Mankind has been decorating its gardens with junipers for more than one millennium. His Latin name sounded exactly the same in the verses of the ancient Roman poet Virgil. Juniper can grow in the form of a tree, similar to a column, and as a sprawling shrub, and even cover the soil with a fluffy carpet. Most junipers are dioecious: male plants pollinators, and female crops yield. Fruits are called "cone-berries." Jam and jam from them are fragrant, with an unusual, but pleasant taste.
Juniper (Juniperus) - evergreen coniferous shrubs and trees of the Cypress family (Cupressaceae).
Columns and carpets. Types and varieties of juniper
Juniper Virginia, or Juniper Virginia (Juniperus virginiana)
Juniper Virginia, or pencil tree native to North America. Once its wood was used for making pencils, hence the second name of the species. Winters well in the suburbs.
Sometimes branches break off under the weight of snow, so it is advisable to tie the crown for the winter with twine. It is not damaged by pests and diseases, shade-tolerant, drought-resistant. Juniper Virginia tolerates pruning well, it is undemanding to the soil, but develops better on sandy loam.
Grows in the form of a tree with a height of 15-30 m and a trunk diameter of up to half a meter. By the age of 20, it reaches a height of 6 m. The crown is conical in shape with branches drooping to the ground. The needles on perennial shoots are scaly, shallow, and on young needles. Especially this type of juniper is decorative at a young age, then the crown can be thinned from below. It grows rapidly and begins to bear fruit. Cones-berries up to 0.6 cm in diameter, dark blue with a bluish bloom, ripen in one season, usually in October, and remain on stems for a long time. A plant strewn with blue berries looks very beautiful in autumn.
Virginian juniper has many decorative forms. Of trees with a pyramidal crown are especially good:
- Pyramidiformis (Pyramidiformis), similar to a narrow 10-meter column with light green needles in summer and pastel purple in winter;
- about the same height as Shottii, with light green scaly needles;
- Polymorph (Polymorpha), with gray needle-shaped needles below and green scaly above;
- Filifera (Filifera), whose bluish crown is wider;
- Chamberlaynii (Chamberlaynii), with drooping long branches in the needle-shaped needles, forming a wide lush gray-green pyramid.
Among the virgin junipers, there are shrubs.
- This is Dumosa (Dumosa) - with a round-pyramidal crown and branches covered with thick needle-shaped needles;
- Albospicata (Albospicata) - up to 5 m high, needles at the ends of shoots whitish;
- Helle (Helle) - with a wide base of open shoots of green color;
- Glauca (Glauca) - columnar shape, up to 5 m high, with bluish-green needles.
- Kosteri (Kosteri) - creeping shrub, decoration of the lawn and rock garden.
The juniper virgin is distinguished by an unusual color of needles:
- Cinerascens (Cinerascens) - greenish-ashen;
- Aureospicata (Aureospicata) - with golden tips of young branches;
- Aureovariegata (Aureovariegata) - golden-motley.
Chinese Juniper (Juniperus chinensis)
Chinese juniper grows on calcareous or rocky soils in the mountains of China, Manchuria, Japan. Its powerful branched roots can penetrate into cracks, crevices between rocks and centuries to keep plants, even in a hanging position. Due to this property, Chinese juniper is widely used to strengthen slopes, decorate rocky walls and slides. In Moscow, it hibernates without shelter and gives an annual growth of up to 20 cm in height. It is undemanding to the soil, but does not tolerate dry air.
The Chinese juniper has many decorative forms and varieties.
Of the bushes, the most popular are:
- Hetzii (Hetzii) - up to 5 m tall and 8 m wide with grayish-blue needles;
- Pfitzeriana (Pfitzeriana) - up to 4 m tall, with horizontally directed branches, covered with light green with blue needles;
- Japonica (Japonica) - a sprawling bush with a height of not more than 3 m;
- Gold Coast (Gold Koast) - a lush bush with golden yellow branches.
Juniper Cossack (Juniperus sabina)
Cossack juniper is found in the Caucasus, Crimea, Siberia, Central Asia, as well as in the mountains of Central and Southern Europe, China, and Mongolia. It winters well without shelter in conditions of the middle zone, is drought tolerant, and low soil requirements.
Sometimes it grows in the form of a tree with a height of 2 to 4 m, but more often the species is represented by a low shrub (1-1.5 m) with creeping spreading branches. The shoots are covered with scaly needles, rich in essential oils that give the plant a specific aroma. By the way, the moth does not like him very much, therefore, a branch of Cossack juniper in a wardrobe will reliably protect your woolen things.
Useful advice: Cossack juniper is beautiful, easy to grow, but some of its species have two drawbacks. The first is the presence of sabinol oil in the needles, due to which the shoots can be poisonous. This makes it an undesirable plant in the garden, where there are small children. And yet - Cossack juniper is a carrier of rust, so it should not be planted near fruit trees and berry bushes.
This picturesque juniper is good in rock gardens and rocky gardens. In addition, there are many convenient forms for growing beautiful forms. For example, up to 0.5 m high and up to 2 m wide Tamariscofoliac, with needles of a bluish tint; Variegata looks very impressive - with yellow-white tips of needles and Erecta - with a pyramidal 2-meter crown.
Juniper Daurian (Juniperus davurica)
Juniper Juniper lives on mountain slopes, sandy river banks in Eastern Siberia and the Far East. It is undemanding to the soil, winter-hardy, photophilous, but can tolerate light shading, drought-resistant.
This is a creeping shrub that grows no more than 0.5 m in height and almost 3 m in width. On the shoots there can simultaneously be different in shape leaflets-needles: scaly and needle-shaped, 7-8 cm long. Bright green creeping branches raise the tips of the shoots, and the acicular plumage gives the bush a special grace. Cones-berries up to 0.5 cm in diameter, very good for making tinctures. The decorative form of Expanse with light blue needles is in great demand.
Currently, Daurian Juniper (Juniperus davurica) is classified as a subspecies of the Cossack Juniper (Juniperus sabina var. Davurica)
Common Juniper, or Veres (Juniperus communis)
Common juniper can be found throughout Russia. The plant is very flexible in nature, adapted to different living conditions and unpretentious. He is not afraid of frost and drought, grows on dry and moist soils. Withstands shading, but feels better in sunny places. A very durable plant lives up to 2 thousand years.
It occurs in the form of a multi-trunked tree up to 15 m tall or a bush from 2 to 6 m high. The branching of shoots is chaotic, therefore the crown does not have a definite shape. Blossoms in May with bright yellow spikelets on male plants and subtle light green flowers on female. The cone-berries are fleshy, first green, in the second year, when ripe, blue-black with a bluish bloom and resinous flesh.
Useful advice: In folk medicine, the fruits of common juniper (but not Cossack!) Are considered medicinal. It is recommended to brew them (1 tbsp.spoon in a glass of boiling water, leave for 30 minutes, then strain) and take an infusion of 1 tbsp. spoon 3-4 times a day for diseases of the liver, bladder, rheumatism. Raw berries are good for stomach ulcers.
It has many decorative forms and varieties. Common junipers, similar to candles, are especially effective:
- Hibernica (Hibernica) - narrow-columned, up to 4 m high;
- Goldkone (Goldcone) -column-shaped, with yellow needles;
- Meyer (Meyer) - columnar, up to 3 m high, with bluish needles.
Junipers with a weeping crown Pendula, growing up to 5 m, and similar to a ball Echinoformis (Echinoformis) are also beautiful. Lovers of undersized plants will like Hornibrookii and Repanda - 30-50 cm high, with spread branches 1.5-2 m long, covered with silver-green needles; Nana Aurea (Nana Aurea) - up to 50 cm tall, with densely branching yellow-golden shoots.
Siberian juniper (Juniperus sibirica)
Siberian juniper is often found in Siberia and the Far East. It can grow on peaty and rocky soil, a very hardy and unpretentious look.
It is similar to ordinary juniper, but smaller and more decorative thanks to its variegated needles. It grows slowly, and for a long time its densely branching bushes look like velvet pillows. The cone-berries are almost spherical, with a diameter of up to 0.6 cm, ripen in the second year. Recommended for decorating rocky slides.
Currently, Siberian Juniper (Juniperus sibirica) is combined into the common Juniper (Juniperus communis var. Saxatilis).
How to grow juniper?
The distance between the junipers is between 0.5 and 4 m, given the size in the adult state. The place is selected well-lit by the sun. Most often, a planting hole is dug out 70 × 70 cm, but first of all it is necessary to focus on the size of the root system. Two weeks before planting, a two-thirds pit is filled with a nutrient mixture consisting of peat, soddy clay soil and river sand, taken in a ratio of 2: 1: 1.
But options are also possible here. For example, for planting Siberian juniper, it is necessary to increase the amount of sand (2-3 parts), it is advisable to produce soil for Cossack, and add more clay soddy soil for Virgin. Planted by placing the roots horizontally. Immediately after planting, the plant is watered, and the hole is covered with peat, chips or sawdust (layer 5-8 cm).
Feeding and watering
Junipers can not be fed, but they respond very well to the introduction of nitroammophoski (30-40 g / m2) in April-May. Almost all junipers are drought tolerant, but if the summer is dry, it is advisable to water them once a month, and spray the crown once a week in the morning and evening.
Junipers are pruned if they form a hedge. In all other cases, dried, broken or diseased branches are only removed in spring and autumn.
Shelter for the winter
Recommended species of juniper in the middle lane do not need protection from winter frosts. Preparing for winter is to bind the branches of the crown with twine (in a spiral from top to bottom) to protect against a snowbreaker. Only novosadki in the first winter cover with spruce branches. And for thermophilic ornamental plants it will be quite comfortable in the winter, if in the autumn you mulch the trunk circle with a peat layer of 10-12 cm.
Junipers are grown from seeds, green cuttings with a heel, and creeping forms from layering.
Useful advice: And they planted and transplanted juniper in April and May. Better take root 4-5-year-old plants planted with a clod of earth. This is especially true for Cossack juniper, which has a rooted root system.
Growing Juniper Berry
The seeds in the cone-berry in different species ripen at different times: in some - in the flowering year, in others - the next year. Shoots during autumn sowing appear in 1-3 years. It is preferable to sow juniper in the spring. The ripe berries collected in summer or autumn are mixed with wet sand and kept at room temperature for a month, then 4 months at 14-15 ° C. After such a stratification, seedlings appear in the year of sowing. Soil is added to the furrows, taken near the roots of a juniper already growing in the garden. It contains mycorrhizal fungi, which are necessary for the development of this plant.
It is more convenient to sow in boxes up to 12 cm high with drainage holes. Pebbles or broken bricks are laid at the bottom, then a layer of soil mixture from equal parts of turf land and sand, and fresh pine sawdust is poured with a layer of 4 cm on top. They sow seeds, sprinkle with sawdust (1-2 cm) and cover with paper. Then they grow the same way as other conifers (see pages 35-36).
Juniper growing from a twig
Decorative forms propagated by cuttings. It is better to cut them at the end of June, from the top of the crown. Rooted in a darkened greenhouse, covering the night with mats. Planted to a depth of 2 cm in a soil mixture consisting of equal parts of peat crumb and juniper needles. Instead of the latter, you can use sand with the addition of land from under the junipers. Then they are grown according to the usual scheme.
Juniper growing from a branch
Creeping forms are easily propagated by layering. In spring, the shoots lying on the surface of the soil are laid out in grooves filled with a mixture of peat, river sand and earth, taken in equal proportions, and pinned. During the season, they watered, loosened the soil, and in the spring of next year they chopped off the uterine plant and transplanted for growing.
Juniper protection against pests and diseases
The cause of the curvature of the shoots, slowing down the growth of juniper can be aphids. When it appears, treat the plants with Iskra by dissolving 1 tablet of the drug in 10 l of water.
If you notice spider web nests of the moth, remove them if possible, and sprinkle the juniper with karbofos (70-80 g per 10 l of water).
Sometimes the juniper sawfly damages the shoots. If the branches become brittle, and inside them is empty, then this is his job. The sawfly is courageous with Fufanon (20 ml per 10 l of water).
Cossack and ordinary juniper should not be planted next to fruit trees and berry bushes, because from them it can become infected with fungal diseases that cause bloating shoots, the appearance of mucus on them. Sick branches should be cut, and the infected plant should be transplanted to another part of the garden.
In turn, the juniper is a distributor of rust, which infects the inhabitants of the fruit of the berry garden. To stop the spread of the disease, brown branches are cut off, and the juniper is sprayed with Bordeaux liquid (100 g per 10 liters of water).
Author: Tatyana Dyakova, Candidate of Agricultural Sciences