The genus of not very large trees and shrubs forsythia (Forsythia), or forsythia, is a representative of the olive family. They bloom in early spring with flowers of a rich yellow color. This genus is considered very ancient, which explains its widespread occurrence. So, in East Asia, you can see 6 different species of this plant at once (in Korea, Japan and China). And in European countries you can find only one species - European forsythia (Forsythia europaea), most of the plants are found in the Balkans. This plant was named after the Scotsman W. Forsyth, who was a botanist, chief gardener of Kensington Palace, and also one of the founders of the Royal Horticultural Society. For the first time, this plant got from China to European countries thanks to Forsyth.
Forsythia is not a very large tree or shrub, the height of which can vary from 1 to 3 m. The brownish-gray bark has a rough texture. In certain species, the leaf plates are trifoliate. However, most often they are oval, simple, oppositely located, do not have stipules, with a serrated edge, in length they can reach 2-15 centimeters. The rich yellow flowers are bell-shaped. Forsythia blooms at the beginning of the spring period, while the flowering duration is 20 days (in some cases longer). The fruit is a capsule with winged seeds.
Today, in European countries, most squares, private gardens and city streets are decorated with forsythia. It is considered a symbol of the arrival of spring. Imagine early spring, when everything is still gray and nondescript on the streets, and suddenly your gaze catches out forsythia blazing with its bright flowers. A distinctive feature of this shrub is its very early flowering. Also, this plant has won great love among gardeners due to the fact that it does not impose special requirements on growing conditions and care. The main features of cultivation:
In autumn, the green foliage changes its color to violet-purple or golden, which makes the plant highly decorative again.
Forsythia. Forsythia care.
Forsythia can be planted or transplanted in spring or early autumn, before the frost begins, because the plant must take root well before the frost begins. This plant grows well in the shade, but it prefers a sunny area, which must be necessarily protected from gusts of wind. The quality of the soil is not important for this plant, but it feels best in dry, slightly alkaline soil. In the event that the land on the site is acidic, then it is recommended to bring wood ash into it for digging.
The planting pit should have a size of 50x50x60 centimeters, while the root system of the planted plant should be at a depth of 0.3 to 0.4 m.When several specimens are planted at once, a distance of at least 150 centimeters should be maintained between them. At the bottom of the prepared planting pit, a drainage layer of crushed stone and broken brick should be laid, the thickness of which should be from 15 to 20 centimeters. From above it is covered with a layer of sand, the thickness of which should be 10 centimeters. After that, a soil mixture is poured into the pit, consisting of sand, leafy earth and peat, taken in a ratio of 1: 2: 1, to which 0.2 kg of wood ash must be added. Then the seedling must be placed in a prepared hole, which is filled with soil and well compacted. The planted forsythia must be watered abundantly. When planting in spring, the seedling will need to be looked after as an adult plant. If the planting was carried out in the fall, then no matter what kind of plant was planted, it will be necessary to cover the trunk circle with a layer of mulch. For the winter, the plant must be covered. In this case, the covering material should only be used that allows air to pass through so that the flower buds do not begin to rot during small thaws in winter.
It is necessary to care for forsythia in the same way as for other shrubs grown in the garden. If it rains regularly in summer, then you will not have to water this plant. This should be done only with prolonged drought 1 or 2 times in 4 weeks, while 10 to 12 liters of water are taken for 1 bush. After the plant is watered, weed and loosen the soil to the depth of the shovel bayonet, this is the only way to ensure normal air access to the root system. When loosening is finished, sprinkle the trunk circle with a layer of mulch (dry soil or compost).
Forsythia should be fed 3 times during the season. For the first time, you need to feed the plant at the beginning of the spring period. To do this, a sufficiently thick layer of manure (necessarily rotted) is laid out on the surface of the trunk circle, make sure that it does not touch the branches or the trunk. Then it is watered with plenty of water. Manure will become not only organic fertilizer for the plant, but also mulch. Complete mineral fertilizer (per 1 square meter from 60 to 70 grams) should be applied to the soil in April. When the plant blooms and begins laying flower buds for next year, you will need to feed it with Kemira-universal (for 1 square meter from 100 to 120 grams).
For reproduction, vegetative methods are most often chosen. For example, cuttings. Harvesting green cuttings should be carried out in June, while their length should be approximately 15 centimeters. At the cutting it is necessary to cut off the leaf plates located below, then it must be treated with a drug that stimulates the growth of roots (Epin, Kornevin or Heteroauxin). It is planted in a greenhouse, using sand or perlite. Lignified cuttings, which are harvested in October, are also suitable for reproduction, for rooting they are planted directly in open soil, while 2 or 3 buds should remain above its surface. Do not forget to cover the cuttings with fallen leaves for the winter. In the springtime, it is necessary to remove the shelter, after which the cuttings will begin to grow actively, and in the fall they will already become full-fledged seedlings. For reproduction, you can use layering. In order to get them, you need to choose a stem growing very close to the surface of the site in summer or autumn. At the base, it is pulled over with wire, and an incision should be made in the bark on the surface that faces the ground. The stem is fixed on the surface of the soil and covered with nutritious soil. Layers take root in a relatively short period of time. In springtime, it is necessary to separate the cuttings from the parent plant, and after only 12 months it will begin to bloom.
It is possible to grow forsythia from seeds, but only specialists resort to this method of reproduction.
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Young bushes need only sanitary pruning, during which all dried, injured, and frost-damaged stems are removed. If the forsythia is adult, then in spring only the frozen tips of the branches are cut off from it. The main haircut is done in the summer, when the bush has faded. Those branches that have faded should be cut off by ½ part, while dried and old ones should be cut at a height of 40 to 60 mm from the soil surface, in this case young side shoots will go from them. With the help of pruning, you can control the height, density and shape of the crown, which can be spherical or cupped. In the event that an old bush needs rejuvenating pruning, then all its branches must be cut to a height of 4 to 6 centimeters or shortened by 2/3, thanks to this, young shoots will begin to actively grow. However, very often it is impossible to carry out anti-aging pruning, because from this forsythia it grows very much, but the flowering stops completely. As a rule, a rejuvenating haircut is recommended once every 3 or 4 years.
This plant is highly resistant to diseases and pests. In rare cases, the bush can be affected by moniliosis, wilting or bacteriosis. A bush infected with wilting should be treated with a solution of foundationol (2–5%). If forsythia is struck by bacteriosis, then in this case it will have to be dug up and burned. If brown spots have formed on the surface of the leaf plates, this means that the plant is sick with moniliosis. In this case, it is recommended that all affected parts of the plant be cut out and thoroughly cleaned to healthy tissue. Also, the bush can suffer from nematodes, in this case, the soil is disinfected with Carbation.
To prevent forsythia from freezing in winter, it should be covered. To do this, sprinkle the trunk circle with fallen leaves, while the layer thickness should be 10 centimeters. The branches are bent to the soil and fixed in this position, then the bush is covered with spruce branches. At the very beginning of the spring period, the shelter must be removed, and the branches must be freed, while the fallen leaves must be removed from the trunk. If the bushes are still young, then they are covered with spruce branches for the winter. If a lot of snow falls in winter, then forsythia can do without shelter, but no one can accurately predict the forecast for the whole winter.
This species is most popular with gardeners living in mid-latitudes. In height, such an upright shrub can reach 200 centimeters. All-edge sheet plates have an oblong shape and a length of about 7 centimeters. The color of bell-shaped single flowers is yellow-golden.
This species is very similar to European forsythia, but it is less frost-resistant. In height, the bush can also reach 200 centimeters. Almost all shoots are straight, but they are colored brownish-yellow and are tetrahedral. Dark green elliptical leaf plates reach 10 centimeters in length. Blooming is observed in May. Graceful large pale yellow flowers have twisted petals.
This shrub with a spreading crown can reach a height of 300 centimeters. Thin tetrahedral arcuate drooping branches have an olive or brown-red color. On old stems, leaf plates are simple, while on growth ones they are trifoliate. Large (diameter about 25 mm) yellow-golden flowers are collected in several pieces in bunches. Several forms are cultivated:
The height of the shrub does not exceed 300 centimeters. Its green branches are directed upwards. Densely growing simple leaf plates have a lanceolate-oblong shape, their upper part is serrated. They are colored dark green, 15 centimeters long and 4 centimeters wide. Small bunches consist of flowers, which are painted in a rich yellow-green color. Differs in drought resistance.
This hybrid was created by crossing dark green forsythia and drooping forsythia. It can reach a height of 300 centimeters. The bush begins to bloom only after he turns 4 years old. Leaf plates, as a rule, are oblong with a serrated edge, but trifoliate are also found, they reach 10 centimeters in length. They are dark green in color, while their color remains unchanged until late autumn. The color of the flowers is rich yellow, they are collected in bunches of several pieces. Bloom is observed in April and May. This shrub is fast growing and resistant to frost and drought. Varieties:
The height of the bush can vary from 150 to 200 centimeters. The length of the oval leaf plates is about 8 centimeters, their seamy surface turns purple in the summer. The flowers are white and have a yellow throat. The color of the buds is light pink.
The height of the bush can vary from 150 to 200 centimeters. The spreading branches are yellow-gray in color. The length of the leaf plates is about 7 centimeters; in summer they are painted in a deep green color, which changes to purple in autumn. The diameter of single flowers is about 20 mm, their color is rich yellow. This species begins to bloom earlier than others. It is fast growing and resistant to frost and drought. The most popular varieties are:
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Forsythia is a fairly common culture in landscape design. Such popularity is fully justified by its unusual appearance. The shrub is used both in the form of single plantings and in groups. The plant is beautifully combined with other shrubs, including conifers, forming a beautiful, bright spot against the general background. The bush organically fits into the now popular natural gardens.
Due to its ability to grow quite quickly, forsythia is often used as living enclosures. Hanging forsythia and its creeping varieties are often used in vertical gardening of walls or fences. Increasingly, shrubs are used not only in decorating parks or squares, but also in private plots. Low-growing perennial varieties are planted in pots and decorate terraces, balconies with them, or are placed near the house. Hanging varieties are often planted on slopes or artificial slides.
The shrub also looks beautiful in mixborders; it is also planted on alpine slides. The yellow inflorescences that adorn the site in early spring fascinate not only during their flowering, but also in autumn, when the purple foliage of forsythia looks beautiful against the rest of the greenish-yellow background.
Paying a little attention to the shrub, you can enjoy its beauty for many years.
For the features of caring for forsythia, see the following video.