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Spireas are perennial deciduous shrubs from the Pink family. Their main advantage is abundant and rather long flowering and not demanding growing conditions. One of these species is the Douglas spirea.
- Botanical description of the Douglas spirea
- Growing conditions and basic care measures
- Breeding methods
Botanical description of the Douglas spirea
Spirea Douglas or Tavolga is an upright deciduous shrub up to 1.5 meters high. In its natural form, this species is found in swampy areas in western North America. It is characterized by slightly pubescent shoots with a reddish-brown bark. Leaves are oblong, lanceolate.
Their length ranges from 5 to 10 cm. The bottom of the leaf plates is covered with white tomentose pubescence. Paniculate inflorescences of saturated pink color, located at the tops of the shoots.
The flowering period of the Douglas spirea lasts about 1.5 months. It falls in mid-July and September. The plant acquires the ability to bloom from the age of 3-4 years. In landscape design, this type of spirea is valued for its long flowering period and spectacular inflorescences. It looks especially beautiful against the background of lawns, forest edges and along garden paths.
Growing conditions and basic care measures
Open, sunny areas with soddy soils are best for placing the Douglas spirea. This culture also feels good in light partial shade. The more fertile the land, the more luxuriant and better this shrub develops. At the same time, the level of soil acidity should be in the range from 6.1 to 7.8 units.
Planting meadowsweet in a permanent place is best done in early spring before the start of intensive growth or in September. At the same time, planting work is best planned for rainy, cloudy weather.
If the plant is planned to be used to create hedges, then the distance between the bushes should be about 40-50 cm in rows and 30-40 cm between rows. When creating separately growing groups, the bushes are placed at a distance of 70-100 cm from each other.
The average planting hole should be about a third larger than the root system. Its depth should be from 40 to 50 cm. When placing a seedling in a hole, its root collar should be at the level of the soil surface. At the bottom, it is also advisable to equip a drainage layer of broken bricks, sand or similar materials.
The main care of meadowsweet consists in periodic feeding and watering during the drought period. The first time the bushes are fed in early spring. For this, you can use any complex mineral fertilizer. It should be diluted according to the attached instructions.
Spirea also responds quite well to the introduction of organic matter and potassium monophosphate. Favorable for meadowsweet and mulching the soil surface with rotted sawdust or sheet compost.
Spirea should be watered in moderation. You should not allow any gulf or overdrying of the soil. After irrigation, the soil surface is loosened, and at the same time weeds are removed. When caring for a spirea, it is advisable to prune. It is carried out in the following terms:
- In the spring, before bud break. During it, old shoots are removed and younger ones are shortened.
- After the end of the flowering period. At this moment, the tops with faded inflorescences are removed.
- In the autumn. Perform if necessary to rejuvenate the bush. In this case, the old shoots are simply cut on a stump.
Spirea Douglas is a fairly winter-hardy plant. It can withstand frosts down to -28 ° C without any problems. Therefore, in most cases, she does not need to build an additional winter shelter.
But in some especially frosty and snowless winters, a slight freezing of the bushes can still be observed. To help recover such damaged plants, in the spring they are fed with nitrogen-containing fertilizers.
Spirea Douglas easily reproduces in the following ways:
- dividing the bush
- using seeds
Cuttings. For propagation, you can use both green and semi-lignified cuttings. The best time to harvest planting material is the middle of summer.
For rooting cuttings, a loose and sufficient moisture-consuming substrate is used. It is prepared from peat and river sand mixed in a 1: 1 ratio. A prerequisite for rooting cuttings is a fairly high air humidity. This is achieved by frequent spraying and watering.
Layers. For reproduction of meadowsweet by layering in the spring, its lower branches are bent and pinned to the ground. Rooting of such a shoot usually occurs by the spring of next year. Then you can start planting young plants.
By dividing the bush. The fastest way to get quite a lot of bushes. Division is best done in spring before bud break. Strongly overgrown bushes are carefully dug in and, using a sharp shovel or knife, they are divided into divisions. The resulting plants are planted. The first time they should be watered more abundantly.
Reproduction of spirea by the seed method is less commonly used. This is due to the long period of growing the planting material. Growing a Douglas spirea on your site is not at all difficult. This shrub does not require special agrotechnical measures and winter shelter.
Video about a beautiful shrub - spirea: