In the past few years, conifers have been very popular among landscape designers, which not only decorate the territory, but also improve air quality, which is an important aspect for large cities and industrial zones. More and more often, near administrative buildings, medical institutions and highways, you can see green spruce, juniper and pine. The long and painstaking work of breeders allowed us to get a huge number of coniferous varieties and their subspecies that differ in size, color and shape.
Before starting decorating the site, experts recommend paying attention to the Sosnovykh family, namely to one of its varieties - the mountain pine Pumilio.
Mountain pine (Pinus mugo) is a coniferous plant that belongs to the Pine family (Pinus) and has several varieties, one of which is Pumilio. Pumilio pine (Pinus mugo Pumilio) - a dwarf coniferous plant that grows in the mountains and looks like a bush. The homeland of this subspecies is the slopes of southern and eastern Europe. The shape of the crown spreads about 3 m in diameter. The maximum height of an adult plant is 150 cm. Life expectancy in favorable and comfortable conditions often reaches 200 years.
This subspecies has a low annual growth, which for 12 months does not exceed 5 cm. The height of a thirty-year-old tree often does not exceed 100 cm. The color of the needles is saturated green and the length can reach 5 cm. Pumilio fruits are cone-shaped cones about 4 cm long that appear only 7 years after planting. The color of young cones is in the range from blue to violet, and their ripening occurs in the fall of the next year after pollination.
The bark of an adult plant is covered with cracks and dark spots. A distinctive feature of this subspecies is the presence of shoots growing upwards, which subsequently are placed horizontally under the weight of their weight. Thanks to the densely growing branches, the bush looks compact and collected. The plant has a powerful and branched root system, most of which is located on the surface.
Due to its unpretentiousness, such a plant grows well both in parks and in green recreation areas, and near roads and in flower beds near industrial facilities.
Differences from other varieties
The family of mountain pines is represented by several subspecies of conifers, each of which has its own distinctive features, as well as advantages and disadvantages. Experts recommend paying attention to the main advantages of this subspecies:
- the ability to grow in various climatic conditions;
- simplicity in leaving;
- wind resistance;
- resistance to low temperatures and drought;
- growth opportunity in ecologically unfavorable regions;
- the presence of a well-developed root system;
- the ability to grow in pots and give the necessary shape to the crown.
Pomilio is often compared with a large Mugo Mugus, whose height can reach 3 m. Pumilio is a dwarf plant with a maximum height of not more than 1.5 m. This feature allows designers to use pine both for open ground and for planting in ornamental planters. Gardeners cannot but please the lack of need for watering adult shrubs.
However, the Mugus subspecies must be watered in the summer. Both plants belong to their natural form, which, unlike varietal plants, are rarely affected by pests and diseases. No less beautiful relatives of the mountain Pomilio, who have their own characteristics, are conifers, described below.
- Gnome. A compact plant with a round crown and dark green needles, in which cones begin to form the next year after planting. The first ten years, the plant increases very slowly in height, but, starting from 11 years of age, the growth rate increases significantly.
- Pug dog Coniferous bush, the shape of which resembles a pillow. The plant has green-blue short needles.
- Humpy. A new look that does not require a haircut. A distinctive feature is the autumn change in the shade of needles from green to brown.
- Hedgehog. Slowly growing species, which has an annual growth of not more than 2 cm. Plant height does not exceed 40 cm.
- Ophir is a dwarf pine that is painted yellow in winter and autumn, and green in spring and summer. The shape of the bush is a flattened sphere. The crown diameter reaches 60 cm.
How to plant?
Pumilio is an unpretentious plant, planting of which is possible in various climatic conditions. Coniferous shrubs are quickly and easily taken on both acidic and alkaline soils. Even the minimum content of nutrients in the soil is not an obstacle to growth. To obtain a beautiful plant with rich needles, experts recommend planting it in well-lit areas with a minimal amount of shade.
Planting material is best purchased in large specialized nurseries that sell quality products that are adapted to a specific region. Shoots purchased in the markets may not correspond to the declared genetic characteristics. High-quality planting material should have the following characteristics:
- flexible branches and tight-fitting needles;
- fresh aroma of needles;
- lack of signs of the disease;
- wet earthen lump;
- lack of dry needles with brown spots.
The optimal time for landing is the beginning of May and September. The age of the seedlings should not be less than 3, but not more than 5 years.
Landing operations should consist of the following stages:
- the formation of a landing pit, the size of which should exceed 2 times the diameter and height of the root system;
- arrangement of a drainage layer of medium fractional gravel and sand;
- the formation of an earthen embankment in the center of the landing pit;
- installation of a seedling in a pit with simultaneous compaction of nutrient soil (the root neck should be located at a distance of 1 cm from the ground);
- mulching with a peat substrate of the root zone;
- plentiful watering of a landing hole;
- fixing a young shoot to an established support.
The optimal soil substrate is a mixture of turf land, sand, clay and a small amount of lime, as well as leaf humus. It is strictly forbidden to use fresh wood chips and sawdust for mulching. If seedlings need to be planted strictly along one line for planting green areas of the curb or territory near the fence, then it is better to replace the planting pit with a trench in which planting material should be placed at a distance of 2 m from each other.
To prevent the drying of young shoots planted in the spring and protect them from the scorching sun, experts recommend the creation of special shading structures. Such designs will help plants take up faster and prevent rust.
How to care?
The process of caring for a pine tree will not cause difficulties even for novice summer residents and gardeners. In the summer, young plants should be watered at least 1 time in 2 weeks. Ground moisture near old pines should be carried out only in urgent need during a period of prolonged drought and lack of rain. The optimal amount of water for one bush is 15 liters. To prevent the formation of an earth crust, which prevents the penetration of oxygen into the root system, it is better to loosen the earth in the root zone the next day after irrigation.
To provide the bush with all the necessary nutrients, it is necessary to use special mineral fertilizers once a year. The needles respond positively to foliar top dressing and organics. Pines, whose age exceeded 10 years, do not need fertilizers at all. At the end of autumn, professional gardeners recommend linking all branches in one bundle, which will not allow the shoots to deform under the weight of snow and ice. It will prevent freezing of roots and keep a thick layer of mulch in spring moisture.
In the spring, after stabilization of positive temperatures, you need to remove all covering materials and cut off all dry and damaged branches . Watering with warm water will help the plant wake up faster after hibernation. To give the bush a beautiful appearance and the necessary shape, it is necessary to regularly carry out corrective pruning. This procedure must be carried out with a special tool and only in the early spring.
You can independently obtain young plants using the following propagation methods:
Reproduction using seeds is a long and not always effective method. Plants grown from seeds will not always inherit maternal genetic characteristics. Some gardeners choose a method of grafting, which also has a low level of effectiveness and is very difficult and time-consuming for beginner gardeners. Without practical and theoretical knowledge, it is better not to use this method.
The simplest and fastest way to propagate pine is cuttings. It is with this method that you can quickly and without unnecessary material and physical costs to get new and healthy young shoots. The main stages of grafting:
- harvesting of planting material by breaking off the processes along with part of the maternal cortex;
- placing the shoot for 2 hours in the water;
- treatment of sections with root growth stimulants;
- planting of shoots in prepared fertile soil;
- placing landing containers in a greenhouse or covering the site with plastic wrap;
- regular moistening of the soil.
If the plant began and began to form new shoots, then in the fall it can be planted at a constant place of growth.
Diseases and Pests
Pumilio pine is a plant that is very rarely exposed to the destructive effects of viral and fungal diseases. The following dangerous pests can spoil the appearance of the bush and lead to its death:
- podkorny tick - a dangerous insect that leads to the lightening of needles and the drying out of young shoots;
- Scabies - a parasite, after the appearance of which the needles acquire a brownish tint and begin to crumble, and a sticky and sticky liquid appears on the entire surface of the bush.
We should not forget about pine hermes, mealybug and pine scoop. To prevent the appearance of dangerous pests, experts recommend regularly inspecting plants and, if necessary, spraying bushes with special chemicals.
Landscape design application
Pumilio pine is not only a beautiful plant that is widely used by landscape designers to decorate the area, but also very useful. Thanks to the release of therapeutic phytoncides, it disinfects the air and has a beneficial effect on the human respiratory system, therefore, it is massively planted near medical institutions, boarding houses and in industrial regions where the air contains a large amount of polluting and dangerous elements.
The dwarf size and low growth rate of pine allows designers to plant it in special decorative containers that can become part of a huge number of beautiful design solutions. Coniferous flowerpots can decorate summer platforms, balconies, verandas, loggias and even roofs.
Pines look spectacular and beautiful on the banks of artificial reservoirs in combination with large boulders and decorative stones. The plant can be used as a dividing element near paths, an entrance zone and fences. Pine trees can become part of Japanese gardens and rock gardens. Some gardeners create beautiful compositions of flowering plants and cereal crops near coniferous shrubs.
The amazing plant not only does not oppress the green neighbors, but also creates a slight shadow near them in the hot season. If you correctly distribute the types of soil in the flowerbed, then the pine can be planted next to representatives of heather and maple. Such a composition will have a spectacular appearance and will be able to please its owners for many years.
If there is a need to plant pine trees on the lawn, then it is better to abandon single bushes that simply merge with lawn greens, and give preference to group plantings.
To create a cozy and comfortable recreation area, it is not necessary to purchase expensive plants that are difficult to care for and require increased attention to themselves. Designers recommend paying attention to easy-care and unpretentious spruce. If you are tired of standard trees, it is worth planting shrubs spruce - they can be used to create various green compositions that can decorate any territory.
The mountain pine Pomilio belongs to this group of conifers. A beautiful plant will not only decorate the site, but also help clean the air near the house, which will undoubtedly have a positive effect on the health of owners.
For how to properly care for the mountain pine pumilio, see the next video.