What a New Year holiday can do without our green darling! The Christmas tree is an ornament of any New Year's feast. Its magnificent forest scent makes it even more attractive. Different shapes, colors, as well as the ability to decorate this New Year's beauty made her popular all over the world! But we all know that the New Year holidays are quickly ending, and we do not want to part with this New Year miracle! Let's think about how to prolong our joy, and first of all, how not to buy a "pig in a poke."
Buying a Christmas tree
Dwarf species of spruce or fir are ideal for growing in tubs. If you want a less traditional Christmas tree, pay attention to dwarf juniper, pine, cypress, yew (carefully, the plant is poisonous), thuja and other conifers. Today, various species, varieties and colors of these plants are widely available.
When purchasing a tree for growing in a container, be sure to check its cold resistance. So that the tree can spend most of the year in the garden or on the balcony, its frost resistance should be 1-2 zones higher than in your region (plants in containers freeze faster than in open ground).
Christmas trees with an open root system
Before Christmas and New Year, such fir trees and firs are usually sold directly on Christmas tree plantations, where they will be dug up for you or offered to be dug up by you. Bringing the tree home, place its roots in a bucket of water for several hours, and then transplant the tree into a suitable container filled with moist, fertile soil.
When purchasing trees with an open root system, keep in mind that only very young and small fir trees will take root in the pots. The larger and more mature the tree, the less likely it is to survive the stress of such a transplant. Buy only those trees that were dug up at you and did not have time to dry out.
Christmas trees with an earthen lump
Such trees were specially grown by the manufacturer so that they could be dug from the ground and delivered to the buyer with minimal stress for the root system. The roots of such Christmas trees are kept moist, as the lump of earth is protected by burlap or garden material.
Carefully remove the burlap or material and place the lump as a whole in a prepared tub with moist fertile soil. The chance of survival of such trees is much higher than those sold with an open root system.
Christmas trees in containers
Before buying a Christmas tree in a container, try to lift the plant with the roots from the pot and carefully examine the root system. The roots, like the tree itself, should look fresh, the soil in the pot should be moist. Such trees, if they were grown according to all the rules, are ideal for further growing in a tub.
You can immediately, before the start of the winter holidays, transplant such a tree into a larger container with moist fertile soil. The larger container is heavier, the Christmas tree in it is more stable, and the soil remains wet longer.
How can I keep a Christmas tree in a pot?
While the tree in the pot is dressed up, care for it consists in watering and spraying, because most conifers in winter suffer from dry air. Water at room temperature as the earthen coma dries up, providing uniform, moderate soil moisture. Be sure to spray needles to increase air humidity.
We should not forget that in nature spruce winter in the cold. Therefore, it must be installed away from heating appliances, as close as possible to a ventilated place. In apartment conditions, the long content of the Christmas tree in the pot is troublesome and difficult, you cannot immediately take it out to the cold: it will die, so you need to "accustom" the Christmas tree in the pot to lower the temperature gradually.
After the New Year holidays, it is better to put the tree in the pot on the glazed balcony, insulate the pot of the tree in a circle, wrapping it with a blanket or in another way. At a temperature close to zero, the tree in the pot will not freeze, and the air on the balcony is more humid. The optimum temperature for conifers in winter is from –5 to +5 ° С. After waiting for spring, when the soil on the street thaws, you can begin to transplant a tree on a land plot.
Those who decide to grow a Christmas tree in a pot in an apartment should remember that a spruce in a pot will not live more than three or four years. Every year, the Christmas tree is transplanted into a new container with the addition of land and fertilizers. For further growth of the root system, increase the size of the container.
It is very difficult to create the desired water-temperature regime in the container, as well as provide the plant with the necessary amount of nutrients. The root system is not spacious enough and without a timely transplant into the open ground: a Christmas tree in a pot may die.
The smaller the plant, the easier it takes root. The percentage of survival under the conditions of detention and transplantation is on average 80%.
Outdoor tree transplant
Spruce is planted from February to April. This plant prefers loamy and sandy loamy soils. Landing is carried out in several stages. First you need to prepare a landing pit, the size of which should be 20-30 cm larger than the size of a coma. The walls of the pit should be sheer. Drain from broken brick and sand is laid at the bottom with a layer of 15-20 cm. When replanting, avoid root drying.
The composition of the land mixture: turf land, peat, sand, taken in a ratio of 2: 1: 1. The tree should be planted, taking into account the subsidence of the soil by 5-7 cm. Backfill is made with layer-by-layer compaction of the earth around the lump to its upper part. The root neck should be at ground level. When planting, 100-150 g of nitroammophos are introduced or stimulants such as rootin, heteroauxin, etc. are used, later it is not necessary to feed.
Further Christmas tree care
Spruce trees are demanding on soil moisture, poorly tolerate its dryness. Watering young plants in a hot, dry summer is mandatory, it is carried out once a week for 10-12 liters per plant. Fir trees require deep drained soils, so loosening is necessary for young plantings, but shallow: 5-7 cm.
Most species of spruce can not stand trampling and soil compaction, as well as nearby groundwater! It is advisable to mulch peat with a layer of 5-6 cm; after wintering, peat is not removed, but mixed with the ground. Regular plucking of the dominant and shortening of the side shoots at the time of growth is recommended.
Types of Christmas trees
In total, forty-five species of spruce trees grow on the globe, mainly in the cold regions of the northern hemisphere. Half are in Western and Central China and North America. Of the 150 known decorative forms, about a hundred were introduced into Russian conditions. In addition to fir trees, pine, fir and other conifers are used as New Year trees. Let's dwell on some of them.
Norway Spruce, or European Spruce (Picea abies)
A familiar tree familiar in the middle lane. It can reach a height of 50 meters and live up to 300 years. If you want to transplant the spruce from the forest to the garden, keep in mind: it prefers well-drained acidic, sandy loam and loamy soils. It does not tolerate stagnation of water, salinization of the soil, prolonged drought.
In the garden, it is better to use decorative forms of ordinary spruce:
'Compacta' - the height and width of its crown are the same - 1.5-2 meters (sometimes up to 6 meters).
'Echiniformis' - the dwarf form reaches a height of only 20 cm with a width of 40 cm. The color of the needles is from yellow-green to gray-green, and the crown is pillow-shaped
'Nidiformis' - a dwarf form with an unusual crown shape - it resembles a nest, since the branches on the trunk grow bell-shaped and fan-shaped.
Gray Spruce, also Canadian Spruce, or White Spruce (Picea glauca)
It is also called white spruce or gray spruce. The color of her needles is more bluish than that of our ordinary spruce, and the bark is ash gray. This is a tall tree up to 20-30 meters high. The crown is thick, conical. The branches of young plants are directed obliquely upward, while in old trees they are omitted. Canadian spruce is undemanding, winter-hardy and quite drought-resistant to soils. Lives 300-500 years.
About twenty decorative forms of Canadian spruce are known. The most popular of them:
'Conica' - dwarf, form up to 1.5 meters high. It is especially recommended to grow in containers on roofs of houses, terraces and balconies, as well as on rocky slides and in group plantings.
'Alberta Blue' - a spectacular form of blue
'Echiniformis' - mini-form up to 0.5 meters high. Especially good in heather and rocky gardens.
Blue Spruce, or Prickly Spruce (Picea pungens)
Among the numerous representatives of the genus, it is distinguished by harmony and beauty, undemanding to growing conditions, frost resistance and resistance to air pollution, surpassing many brothers in this indicator. It is found in nature singly or in small groups along rivers, along the northern slopes of the mountains of the western regions of North America.
Decorative at any time of the year. The most valuable evergreen tree is up to 25 m, and in nature up to 45 m in height, lives up to 100 years. The crown is pyramidal. The branches form regular dense tiers, horizontal or hanging at different angles. Especially beautiful specimens in which the branches are evenly arranged in regular tiers around the trunk from the ground to the top. The needles are prickly, its color varies from green to light blue, silver.
Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris)
A tree up to 20-40 m tall, in youth with a cone-shaped and wide rounded crown, in old age - umbrella-shaped. The bark on the trunks is red-brown, deep furrowed. The needles are bluish-green, somewhat curved, dense, protruding, 4-7 cm long, in a bundle of 2 needles. Cones are single or 2-3 on bent down legs. Seeds - winged nuts, ripen in the second year.
Very photophilous, undemanding to soil fertility, but poorly tolerates its compaction, sensitive to air pollution. Growing fast. Winter hardiness. Given these features, it is recommended for landscaping suburban medical institutions, suburban parks and forest parks, both in clean and mixed stands, in arrays, groups, singly.
Widespread in culture. Abroad used for landscaping streets, roofs, balconies. Promising for our country. It is recommended to plant in groups or singly.
The fir has a slender, mostly narrow, clearly defined crown cone and dark, shiny green needles with white stripes of stomata on the underside of the needles - all this gives the appearance of firs a splendor and splendor. These qualities are further enhanced by the ability of firs to retain lower branches for a long time. They have long been used in landscape gardening. However, in the city, with the exception of some species, firs suffer from air pollution.
They look great in group and alley plantings in combination with white-trunk birch trees, maples, velvet and various shrubs. Good for creating live walls without a haircut. Due to their long-lasting pine needles, fir branches are widely used in floristry. However, they are not suitable as a winter shelter for other plants, since in spring there are so many needles on the branches that neither light nor air reaches the plants through it.
Fir goes well with other large trees (spruce, pine, larch, pseudotsuga). Low-growing species are planted with other low conifers and ground cover perennials.
Nordman Fir (Nordmann), also Caucasian Fir, or Danish Fir (Abies nordmanniana)
She is a Danish Christmas tree (Christmas trees of Denmark), has the correct shape, a beautiful green color and is the most coveted Christmas tree in Europe.
These Christmas trees have a regular conical crown, starting immediately from the base of the trunk. Soft flat needles of the Christmas tree reach 4 cm in length and have two white stripes on the top and bottom, which give it a silver tint.
Danish Christmas tree with proper care for a long time preserves the needles. These spruce trees grow all over the northern coast of Europe, respectively, and the climate of Denmark is ideal for them, which is why it is here that for two hundred years Christmas trees of the highest quality are grown for the whole of Europe.
To extend your New Year mood, it’s worth following some simple advice and the Christmas tree will grow for a long time! We wish you success!