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Now you will not surprise anyone with a flowerbed with dahlias or petunia. Today it is customary to decorate city streets and adjoining plots with special care and fine artistic taste, using perennial plants for this purpose. Living green hedges, arches, gazebos, tunnels under hanging foliage help residents of large cities again and again to feel the beauty of nature and not lose touch with it. The art of topiary, known in ancient Rome, the creation of living green sculptures from plants, has gained wide popularity in our days.
From those ancient times to the present day, just one of the best plants for creating such garden forms was considered boxwood. It grows so slowly that 2-3 haircuts per season are enough to keep topiary and hedges in good shape. In addition, the box is very plastic. This means its ability to respond to a haircut by growing new branches, which makes its crown only thicker and denser.
Large green sculptures are formed from several plants, planted close to each other. Hedges and labyrinths are obtained by planting a huge number of boxwood seedlings according to a certain pattern. And then the natural question immediately arises: where can we get such a number of seedlings? How to propagate boxwood?
How boxwood breeds
The breeding of boxwood is usually done in two ways: seed and vegetative.
Seed method gives good results. Sprouts that have sprung from the seeds grow back quickly enough and over time they turn into small( 10-15 cm) bushes. But reproduction of boxwood with seeds has several disadvantages:
- Seeds lose their germination very quickly. Therefore, it is possible to sow only very fresh seeds - from the harvest of the previous year.
- Seeds of boxwood have low germination. Even their presowing treatment with growth stimulants does not give a noticeable improvement in germination. Usually, only a third of the seeds germinate.
- As the boxwood plants undergo regular shearing and removal of flowers for better crown formation, fruit ripening on such plants becomes difficult. To get the seeds for sowing, you need to get rid of one or more plants from the haircut for the whole season, which, undoubtedly, will not have the best effect on its decorative qualities.
Cutting of a box from this point of view looks more attractive, since it gives much more new rooted own seedlings. Small branches of boxwood are placed in a nutrient substrate, and soon new young plants are produced on their own roots.
There is another way to propagate boxwood: rooting of green layers. To do this, several young twigs close to the ground bend down and fall asleep with earth. By the end of the season, roots are formed in places of contact with the soil. After this, the layers can be safely cut off from the mother bush and planted as separate plants.
To reproduce boxwood cuttings at home, you need to know a few simple rules.
The cutting can be carried out from spring to autumn. In the autumn, the cuttings bruise better, but they do not have enough time even for growth. Such seedlings have to be planted in pots and kept at home in a cool place until spring. On the contrary, in the spring-summer period, cutting the boxwood, although it gives the percentage of rooting just below the autumn, but it allows to get strong grown seedlings by the autumn. Young plants at the same time become able to winter in the open field.
For grafting, it is necessary to cut the branches 10-20 cm long with a sharp shears. It is better to cut them from the bottom of the bush. Twigs should be one or two years old, well matured, but not stiff. Sprigs should be cleared of several lower leaves, freeing at least two internodes. After that, you need to slightly damage the bark of the stem - slightly hold along it along the needle, with a fingernail. Subsequently, callus is formed on such grooves, from which roots will grow. Before planting, cutting boxwood can be treated with root formation stimulants, but this is not necessary. The box already has a good ability to root.
Boxwood cuttings cannot be placed for rooting into water and must not be dried before rooting. This will lead to their death. Box refers to those plants that need to be rooted only in the ground.
If you intend to reproduce boxwood at home, then for cutting it is necessary to take wide pots with large holes in the bottom. This will avoid stagnation in the pot of excessive moisture, because it damages the plants. The soil in which cuttings will take root should be light and breathable. You can use a mixture of turf land, peat and sand.
Cuttings are planted in the shade, 10 cm apart. You can plant them in several rows, leaving a distance of at least 20 cm between rows. When planted in pots, 1-4 cuttings are placed in each.
When cutting boxwood, planted twigs are best covered with foil or non-woven material. This will help create future microclimate saplings, independent of external conditions. Planting should be moderate, but regularly watered. After about 2 months, the first sign of successful rooting of cuttings will appear - the plants will start growing and form new leaves.
recommendations The simplest evergreen box( Búxus sempervírens) is most unpretentious when grafting. Variegated varieties require more attention. When drying, over-wetting, or slight damage to the roots, they can shed their leaves.
The rooted saplings of boxwood can be planted in a permanent place or( in autumn grafting) left in pots until spring. Young plants in the open ground must be very carefully prepared for the first winter. The soil around them can be mulched with mature compost or needles. If the winters in the region are harsh, but it is necessary to provide shelter - from non-woven material or plywood boxes with holes. In winter, young landings should be covered up with snow.
Watch the technology of breeding boxwood cuttings on the video set at the end of the article.
What to choose
We considered several ways of breeding boxwood: seeds, cuttings and green layers. Undoubtedly, the most productive is grafting.
If there are certain problems with the presence of seeds and lower layers of sheared boxwood bushes, then everything is much simpler with cuttings:
- You can cut the cuttings from your own plant you bought earlier.
- You can buy inexpensively or even get it for free from other owners of boxwood plants after regular haircuts.
- You can completely dial them in the park during the shearing of hedges and topiary.
The most important thing is not to overdry the cuttings and place them in the ground for rooting in time. And believe, the results of your efforts will for many years please you with healthy and beautiful boxwood plants.