Actinidia: origin, description, planting rules and methods of reproduction

Anyone who believes that he has not seen actinidia is only partially right. Someone had a chance to visit the Botanical Garden or visit the Pharmaceutical Garden - often the newlyweds take pictures there against the background of graceful vines strewn with white corollas of flowers in June. Some, while walking around the garden plots, noticed climbing plants with strange pink and white leaves, as if stained with paint. And few have tried kiwi. This is also an actinidia, but Chinese, or a delicious actinidia.

The origin of actinidia and a brief description

Actinidia (from the Greek. Ακτινιδιον - ray) is a genus of woody vines of the Actinidian family. For the inhabitants of our Far East, Primorye or the Khabarovsk Territory, there is nothing exotic in these plants. Actinidia has been living there since the Tertiary period, when there were still subtropics in those parts. With the onset of glaciers, the climate underwent changes, but actinidia did not disappear, like other plants, but adapted to more severe conditions. Four species of actinidia out of the existing seventy-five are currently growing in the Far East.

Actinidia - deciduous creepers with tree-like curly or erect stems. Actinidia stems need support. They have no aerial roots, so they are planted next to the buildings without damage to the buildings. Actinidia leaves have a very decorative appearance. Painted at different times of the year in various colors from white to raspberry, they attract attention, creating the feeling of a fabulous holiday.

Actinidia are used for vertical gardening, decorate the facades of buildings

Actinidia is a dioecious plant. If you have an idea not only to decorate the garden, but also enjoy the original berries, you need to plant at least two plants. And it’s better, even substantially more, for example, in a ratio of 1: 3, where a lower indicator relates to male plants. Before flowering, it is not possible to distinguish a female plant from a male one. After flowering, it is noticeable that the male flowers do not have a pistil, while the female flowers have both stamens and a pistil. Corollas of flowers are usually white.

Male actinidia flowers lack a pestle, while female flowers have both a pestle and stamens

The fruits of actinidia are dark green berries, often oblong, but there are also spherical ones. The fruit is up to 3 cm long and 1.5 cm wide. Ripe berries are fragrant, sweet, soft, with a lot of small seeds.

It is safe to say that in the future actinidia will occupy one of the first-rate places among the fruit plants of our region, capable of completely displacing grapes in the quality of their fruits ... not only replacing them in all forms of consumption, but far surpassing them in the quality of their fruits ...

I.V. Michurin

Kuragodnikova G. A. Comprehensive economic and biological assessment of actinidia cultivars in the Central Black Sea

Actinidia can grow up to 80-100 years. In the early years, it grows rapidly, then slows down. Fruiting lasts until about 50 years.

Landing rules

Before you start planting actinidia, you need to decide for what purpose it is intended. For decorative purposes, the sex of the plants and the conditions of their growth do not matter. To obtain a crop of fragrant berries, you need to get seedlings of male and female types, and it is best to pick up more female seedlings. The optimal age for seedlings is from two to four years.

For the bearing of actinidia, sunny areas are necessary, but too open spaces can cause burns in plants. Illuminated areas where the plant will shade during the hot season are best suited.

For the normal growth and development of actinidia, it needs weakly acidic or neutral soils, well-drained, fertile. In lowlands, on clay soils, it does not grow. As a drainage in a planting hole for actinidia, river pebbles are used, but not gravel or crushed stone, since the calcium contained in them can alkalize the soil. With a high occurrence of groundwater, an artificial mound is poured for actinidia, broken brick and pebbles are used for drainage.

Video: first actinidia crop

Where better to plant a vine

If possible, it is better to plant actinidia on natural slopes, where water does not stagnate and the plants will be well lit. Like all creepers, actinidia needs strong support. A plant is planted along the fence, next to the house, on trellises or arched structures are formed. Fruits appear at the top of the crown, so it is important to think about the type of support in advance, so that it is later convenient to harvest. Actinidia is characterized by prolonged bearing.

It is not recommended to plant actinidia next to large fruit trees. Such a neighborhood suppresses actinidia, depriving it of sun and moisture, and regular loosening of the near-trunk circle of fruit trees injures the superficially located roots of vines.

Actinidia is not planted in areas where it has already been cultivated before, but a new place is being selected. Scientists also noticed that apple trees have a bad effect on the growth of actinidia, while the proximity to currant bushes is favorable.

Actinidia planting in spring

Landing holes are prepared in advance. The size of the holes should be 50x50x50 cm. They are placed at a distance of about one and a half or two meters. With a sufficient amount of fertilizer in the hole, the distance may be less if it is supposed to decorate the facade of the house.

  1. Seedlings are selected in advance, cut injured and dried sections of roots and branches.
  2. Broken bricks, pebbles, small river stones fall asleep at the bottom of the holes.
  3. The drainage layer is covered with peat mixture.
  4. A mixture of soil with sand and mineral fertilizers containing nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium in a ratio of 1: 5: 1 is poured over this layer with a knoll; no more than 30–40 g of fertilizer per well.
  5. Actinidia are planted in mounds with mineral fertilizers.
  6. The soil is well compacted, making sure that the root neck does not go deep.
  7. Abundantly watered and mulched with sawdust, pine needles or dry peat.

Chlorine-containing fertilizers cannot be added to the planting hole; actinidia do not tolerate chlorine. In the early years, cats are dangerous for seedlings; they damage young shoots in order to enjoy the sap of plants. Old lignified stems do not suffer from cat claws. Young seedlings are saved most often by a fence made of metal mesh.

Autumn landing

If it is necessary to plant actinidia in the fall, it is important to know that this is done no later than 2-3 weeks before the expected frosts. Otherwise, there are no differences: the landing hole is prepared in the usual way, after planting, the hole is mulched with peat, humus or compost. Young actinidia seedlings in the first year harbor. Adult plants tolerate winter well, in isolated cases, you only have to remove the branches damaged by frost. There is no need to remove actinidia from trellis and cover.

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Video: Actinidia planting

Breeding methods

Like any angiosperm plant, actinidia can propagate vegetatively and generatively. During vegetative propagation, cuttings from male plants retain male properties, and female cuttings, respectively, all the properties of mother plants. Plants obtained by cuttings begin to bear fruit in the third or fourth year after planting. The vegetative type also includes reproduction by arc layers.

When propagating by seeds, that is, generative, it is impossible to determine the sex of the plant before the first flowering, but according to reviews, seedlings obtained from seeds are more hardy. Plants grown from seedlings bear fruit only in the seventh year.

Propagation by cuttings

For the propagation of actinidia, annual strong shoots are most suitable. Cuttings are cut in June, when the sap flow is no longer so intense.

  1. With a powerful annual shoot, a branch of half a meter length is cut.
  2. They divide it into cuttings 10-15 cm long, so that each has 3 buds.
  3. The cut under the lower kidney passes at an angle of 45 °, and transversely above the upper, 5 cm above the kidney itself.
  4. The lower leaves are removed, the upper ones are cut in half to reduce the evaporation area.
  5. If the cut is treated with Cornevin, rooting will be quick.
  6. Prepare the wells in advance so that the cuttings are 5 cm apart.
  7. The soil in the holes is mixed with humus and river sand in a ratio of 2: 2: 1.
  8. Mineral fertilizers that do not contain chlorine (!) Are applied at the rate of not more than 100 grams per m2.
  9. The soil-soil mixture is abundantly watered, cuttings are planted at an angle of 60 °.
  10. The soil is carefully compacted, while the middle kidney of the cuttings remains above the soil level.
  11. If the cuttings were not planted in a greenhouse or a greenhouse, ordinary glass jars are put on them.
  12. After planting, make sure that the soil is sufficiently moist, and cuttings are sprayed up to five times a day.
  13. Before frost, cuttings are covered with fallen leaves or mowed grass.
  14. In the early spring, before the swelling of the kidneys, rooted sprouts are planted in the selected area at intervals.
  15. In the future, as the seedling grows and develops, a vine is formed on a stable support.

After planting a seedling in a permanent place, the formation of vines

The described method is otherwise called "green cuttings." There is still a way to cuttings with lignified shoots. They are harvested in late autumn or winter: they cut off smooth cuttings, bandage them in bundles, and store them in an upright position in a box with sand at low (up to + 5 ° C) temperatures. In the spring, they plant it in a greenhouse and look after it similarly to green cuttings.

Rooting layering

If you want to propagate the already existing cultivar of actinidia, a strong shoot is chosen. In the summer, when the sap flow slowed down and young leaves appeared, they bend it to the ground and pin it.

The layering is densely pinned and covered with earth for rooting

The place where the cuttings touch the ground is covered with a mound of soil and mulched. At the same time, the top of the shoot does not fall asleep, it can be tied to a peg. The mound is watered, a new sprout that has appeared is constantly sprayed. In autumn, rooted layers are separated from the parent plant and transplanted to a permanent place.

Seed planting

To grow actinidia from seeds, you need to stock up with tremendous patience. Fresh seeds are used for sowing, as they quickly lose their germination.

  1. Seeds are taken from ripe soft fruits, placed in a bag or a fine strainer, thoroughly washed and dried on a napkin in the shade.
  2. In early December, seeds wrapped in a cloth are poured with water so that the fabric is completely covered. Water is changed daily.
  3. After four days, a rag with seeds is taken out, slightly wrung out and immersed in clean, calcined moist sand at room temperature for two months. During this period, once a week, the seeds are removed, the cloth is unwrapped for five minutes to ventilate, wrapped again, washed in water, slightly squeezed and again immersed in sand. It is important that the sand does not dry out.
  4. In early February, a box of sand and seeds is buried deep in the snow.
  5. After 2 months, the box is transferred to a room with a temperature of 10-12 ° C and left for 3-4 weeks.
  6. Hatching seeds are planted on fertile soil, grown at room temperature until two or three true leaves appear, then transplanted into open ground.

Actinidia grown from seeds are more hardy, but bear fruit later than seedlings obtained by the vegetative path, in the sixth to seventh year.

Actinidia transplant to a new place

When transplanting actinidia, it is important to remember that it is impossible to injure it during active sap flow, it can die. Therefore, it is best to transplant young seedlings up to three years of age and either in early spring, before buds open, or in late autumn. Supports for actinidia are better to install in advance so as not to injure superficially located roots.

To care for actinidia, it is important not only to plant it on fertile, well-drained soil and regularly water it, but also to ensure sufficient air humidity, avoiding loss of foliage.

Actinidia on the arched structure - a real decoration of the garden

Gardeners reviews

Dear friends! Very old actinidia grow in our country house - they are 20 years old, no less: the trunks are already just like trees. There has never been a new growth near them. In short, we installed a gazebo next to them, but some creepers grow to the side. It is necessary to transplant them under the arbor. In the spring, when actinidia was circumcised, it terribly flowed out with juices, just like from a tap. I understand that the plant probably has its own rules of circulation. Who knows, tell me: 1) When is it best to transplant it - in the spring, in the fall, which month is the best for this? October, i.e. Now, fit? 2) The roots sprouted into the earth thoroughly and deeply. Is it possible to chop them to the maximum? Will our treasure not dry after that? 3) How to create a new planting material from them, that is, to propagate? We value actinidia very much and just in case I decided to play it safe with your advice. Thank you in advance for your help!

Geys, Boguslavsky district

I wanted to answer earlier, but the garden Internet didn’t let me ... It also seems to me that there is no way to transplant an adult vine, you need a special technique to dig up as much root system as possible, it is unlikely to succeed. I also have old creepers like trees and I just can’t imagine how you can transplant them - you will destroy everything at once. And about breeding - and you can dig up the shoot, it is advisable to scratch the bark a little, where it will touch the ground, it is easier to start growing roots. And I also think that before next fall and there will be nothing to meddle with looking at rooting. Better yet, green cuttings. The girls have already painted everything - smarties, taking cuttings in the summer, preferably in June - this is the best time for reproduction. And if the cuttings of roses are familiar, then there are no problems at all, everything is done exactly the same. A couple of buds in the ground, and a couple of leaves, it is desirable to cut the leaf blades in half to reduce the evaporation area, at the top. and put in a small place and cover with a jar. It turns out a mini-greenhouse. The next year, you can slowly open and air, good luck!

Nikusia, Kiev

The biggest problem for actinidia is freezing. It makes sense to cover it from above with a Latrusil of at least grade 42. Better thicker, not so clings to branches. This year I covered the pears, so at least eat them. But actinidia did not have enough material. They did not expect such an early freeze. Although I already knew in April 100% that it would be a cold May. My actinidia is always trimmed, she is already 35 years old, and the height is not more than 2.5 meters after trimming. From some vines I collect 12 kg of berries. Now acquired a self-fertile variety of argument actinidia, the Isaii variety. I’ll cover it together with a non-spiky blackberry and grow it low, it bears fruit the next year after planting. I confirm that it has already blossomed, but there were no berries because of the very cold weather. You could pollinate artificially. But she was too small.

stefan, Novopolotsk, Belarus

Olesya! It would seem to me that you need to grow actinidia Giraldi in Montreal, it is much larger than colomicta, a little smaller than kiwi. Or am I not right? As for the information about the varieties, then you are not mistaken. Then, perhaps, there was reseeding of seeds and selection of the best seedlings, which received the status of a variety. Almost all varieties of actinidia were obtained in MoVIR E.I. Sausage. Back to the wild. You can’t even imagine how many expeditions this woman made. By the way, the selection was not only in nature, but also in areas of gardeners. Still engaged in breeding in the Kiev Botanical Garden and the Far East. What interests you in seed propagation: the process itself? Sun! There are no self-pollinated varieties, but you need to buy varietal actinidia in Mikhnevo, where MoVIR is located, now it is true that it obeys the Institute of Gardening.

Tamara Yudina, Moscow

The noble foliage of actinidia covers the facade of a country house. Delicate and fragrant berries make a pleasant variety in the diet and enrich it with a significant amount of vitamins. Actinidia is a plant equally attractive for aesthetes, gourmets and just wanting to eat fresh, full of vitamins, and most importantly, not bored berries.

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