Juniper - soft needles
Juniper - evergreen, in appearance resembles a small cypress. This is a long-lived plant. In favorable conditions, juniper lives from 600 to 3000 years. Imagine somewhere on Earth there still live plants hatching from seeds a thousand years before the birth of Christ. Juniper has long been famous for its healing properties. This plant treats many diseases: skin, tuberculosis, asthma. Juniper acts soothingly on the nervous system, relieves stress. And why? Because it contains a lot of essential oils with a tarry, tart, smoky aroma.
JuniperLatin name - Juniperus. It is a genus of evergreen coniferous shrubs and trees of the Cypress family (Cupressaceae) Also known as heather. The Türkic name of various species of large tree-like junipers, which has passed into scientific literature, is juniper.
Juniper leaves are ring-shaped or opposite. Each ring-shaped leaf has three needle-shaped separate leaves, the opposite leaves are scaly, adhering to the branch and on the back, mostly with an oily gland.
Plants are monoecious or dioecious. The male "bump" of juniper is placed on the top of a short side branch. It is spherical or elongated and consists of several thyroid or scaly stamens arranged in pairs opposite or three-membered rings. On the underside of the stamen, there are from 3 to 6 almost spherical anthers. Female "bumps" appear at the apex of a short lateral branch.
The plant is drought tolerant and photophilous. Lives for a long time, up to 600 years. It renews badly in nature. Distributed in the Northern Hemisphere, with the exception of one species - Juniper East African (Juniperus procera), common in Africa in the south to 18 ° south latitude. In many semi-desert territories: in the west of the USA, in Mexico, central and southwest Asia dominates in wooded areas.
- Light - direct sunlight;
- Soil moisture - moderately moist;
- Humidity - moderately humid;
- Soil - fertile, medium fertility, drained, soil mixture;
- Reproduction - by cuttings, seeds.
Soft (in most species) needles of various colors, delicate aroma, undemanding to growing conditions - these are the reasons why gardeners and designers are located for junipers.
Junipers are planted in sunny places. In the shade, they can grow shapeless and loose and lose all their decorative virtues. Only common juniper can tolerate some shading.
The distance between plants should be from 0.5 m in medium-sized and small to 1.5-2 m in tall forms. Before planting, all container plants must be saturated with water, holding an earthen lump for about 2 hours in a container of water.
The depth of the landing pit depends on the size of the earthen coma and the root system of the plant. Typically, junipers are planted in a pit, the size of which is 2-3 times larger than a coma. For large bushes - 70 cm deep.
At the bottom of the pit, you definitely need to make a drainage layer with a thickness of 15-20 cm. And juniper roots are covered with a soil mixture consisting of peat, turf land and sand in a ratio of 2: 1: 1. Large plants are planted so that the root neck is 5-10 cm higher than the edges of the planting pit. In young plants, it should be at ground level.
The optimum acidity of the soil is from 4.5 to 7 pH, depending on the type and variety. For Cossack juniper, liming is useful - before planting on heavy soils, dolomite flour or fluff lime (80–100 g. In a pit 50x50x60 cm in size) is introduced.
Junipers are undemanding to the soil. All they need is the introduction of nitroammophoski (30-40 g / m²) or Kemira Universal (20 g per 10 liters of water) in April – May.
Junipers are watered only in the dry summer, and that is infrequent - 2-3 times per season. The irrigation rate is 10-30 liters per adult plant. Once a week it can be sprayed, certainly in the evening. Junipers ordinary and Chinese do not tolerate dry air. Juniper Virginia is drought tolerant, but grows better on soils of moderate moisture.
Young plantings of junipers need loosening - shallow, after watering and weeding the weeds. Immediately after planting, the soil is mulched with peat, wood chips, pine bark or pine nutshell shells, the thickness of the mulch layer is 5-8 cm.The heat-loving crops are mulched for the winter, and in the early spring the mulch is necessarily raked off, as it can cause root neck decay.
Due to the slow growth, junipers are pruned very carefully. Mainly remove dry branches at any time of the year. For winter, only young plants shelter, and then only in the first year after planting.
Juniper can be propagated by seeds and cuttings.
Junipers are dioecious plants that can be propagated by seed and vegetative means. Since decorative forms of juniper from seeds are practically impossible to obtain, they are propagated only by cuttings.
Gender of juniper ordinary varies in crown: in male specimens it is narrow, columnar or ovoid, in female specimens it is loose and outstretched. In April – May, yellow spikelets appear on male specimens of common juniper, and green cones appear on female specimens. Fruits - unusual for coniferous rounded cone berries up to 0.8 cm in diameter, ripen in August-October. At first they are green, and as they mature, they turn purple-black with a bluish waxy coating. The berries have a spicy aroma and a bitter taste. Inside the fruit are three seeds.
In order to grow a juniper bush from a seed, it is necessary to stratify it. The best way - autumn sowing of seeds in boxes with the earth. Then natural stratification - the boxes are taken out and stored under snow during the winter (130-150 days), and in May the wintered seeds are sown in the beds. Juniper seeds can be sown in spring, in May, in beds without stratification, but seedlings will appear only next year.
But decorative forms of juniper from seeds are almost impossible to get, so they are propagated vegetatively - by cuttings. To do this, from the end of April to mid-May, from an adult plant that has reached the age of 8–10 years, annual cuttings of 10–12 cm are cut off and 3–5 cm from the bottom to free them from needles. Cuttings are necessarily cut with a “heel”, that is, with a piece of old wood. The bark is carefully trimmed with scissors. Then for a day they are placed in a solution of "Heteroauxin" or any other growth stimulator.
For rooting, sand and peat are used in equal amounts. Cuttings are covered with a film and shaded. Instead of watering, it is better to spray. After 30-45 days in most cuttings, the root system develops well. In late June and early July, rooted cuttings are planted in beds, and they winter in the open ground, covered with spruce branches. Growing rooted cuttings lasts 2-3 years, after which they are transplanted to a permanent place in the garden.
Types and varieties of juniper
Tall junipers with a pyramidal and columnar crown
- Juniper Virgin "Glauka" (Juniperus virginiana ‘Glauca’)
- Juniper Virgin Skyrocket (Juniperus virginiana ‘Skyrocket’)
- Juniper ordinary "Kolumnaris" (Juniperus communis ‘Columnaris’)
- Juniper ordinary "Khibernika" (Juniperus communis ‘Hibernica’)
- Juniper Chinese "Kaytsuka" (Juniperus chinensis ‘Kaizuka’)
- Juniper rocky "Springbank" (Juniperus scopulorum ‘Springbank’)
- Juniper Cossack "Tamariscifolia" (Juniperus sabina ‘Tamariscifolia’)
- Juniper Chinese Blue Alps (Juniperus chinensis ‘Blue Alps’)
- Juniper medium "Hetzi" (Juniperus x media ‘Hetzii’)
- Juniper Cossack "Erect" (Juniperus sabina ‘Erecta’)
- Juniper scaly "Holger" (Juniperus squamata ‘Holger’)
- Juniper Virginian "Kobold" (Juniperus virginiana ‘Kobold’)
- Juniper Virginiana "Nana Compact" (Juniperus virginiana ‘Nana Compacta’)
Juniper dwarf forms
- Juniper horizontal "Blue Pygmy" (Juniperus horizontalis ‘Blue Pygmea’)
- Juniper horizontal "Viltoni" (Juniperus horizontalis ‘Wiltonii’)
- Juniper horizontal "Glauka" (Juniperus horizontalis ‘Glauca’)
- Juniper horizontal "Hughes" (Juniperus horizontalis ‘Hughes’)
With golden needles
- Juniper Virginian "Aureospicata" (Juniperus virginiana ‘Aureospicata’)
- Juniper medium "Gold Coast" (Juniperus x. media ‘Gold Coast’)
- Juniper average "Old Gold" (Juniperus x. media ‘Old Gold’)
With blues or blue needles
- Juniper rocky "Blue Arrow" (Juniperus scopulorum ‘Blue Arrow’)
- Juniper medium "Blauv" (Juniperus x. media ‘Blaauw’)
- Juniper scaly "Blue Carpet" (Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Carpet’)
- Juniper scaly "Blue Star" (Juniperus squamata ‘Blue Star’)
Diseases and pests of juniper
The most common juniper disease is rust. Of the pests, the most dangerous are the spider mite, juniper mining moth, aphid, and juniper scale.
Against aphids are sprayed twice with Fitoverm (2 g per 1 liter of water) with an interval of 10-14 days.
The mining moth is afraid of “Decis” (2.5 g per 10 l), with which the plant is also sprayed twice and also after 10-14 days.
Against the spider mite, the drug "Karate" (50 g per 10 l) is used, against the scab, karbofos (70 g per 10 l of water).
To stop rust, the plant will have to be sprayed four times with an interval of 10 days with a solution of arceride (50 g per 10 liters of water).