How to grow blue spruce: a review of growing technology from seeds and cuttings
- Type: conifers
- Flowering period: june
- Height: 25-30m
- Color: Green, Bright Blue
- Drought resistant
Among the variety of conifers, blue spruce is considered an elite plant, as it has an amazing color, lush needles and a solid appearance. No wonder she more often than other representatives of her kind flaunts near Government houses, banks and other institutions of considerable importance to the city. Therefore, summer residents increasingly want to grow their own copy, especially if the territory allows. The prickly beauty is used as a tapeworm, making a peculiar emphasis on the site. And in winter, she becomes the main character of the New Year holidays, shining with garlands and lights. But buying a Christmas tree of "blue blood" is expensive, so many owners are trying to propagate it with seeds from cones or cuttings. We will figure out how to grow a blue spruce from seeds and cuttings.
Cooking planting material
The cultivation of any spruce, not only blue, begins with the harvesting of seeds. At the end of summer, look for a suitable blue spruce in advance, the color and shape of which you most like. Check if the tree has formed bumps. If they are, wait for the November cold snap and in the first decade of the month pick as many cones from the selected plant as possible. The more seeds you have, the higher the probability of growing a blue specimen.
Only 30-40% of young fir trees that sprout from a single tree will have exactly the same color as their "ancestor." The rest can be blue-green, or even completely green, like ordinary spruce. This is the problem of seed reproduction, in which the traits of the mother plant are inherited much less than with cuttings.
The seeds of blue spruce have a translucent impeller, which helps them to fly further, but when you plant a house, you can remove it by brushing it with your hands
Can be collected in February, if late in the fall. But then it will be necessary to land at the end of June. And this option is only suitable for areas with cool summers. In heat, seeds burn from temperature.
The most difficult thing is to climb a tree, because the cones grow in the upper part of the crown. Tear only tight, completely closed cones. You can, of course, search under the trees, but it will be difficult to find an unopened instance.
From seedlings sprouted at home, no more than 30 percent of the seedlings of blue color will grow, so you can only select the most beautiful in a year
Carry the collected material in a warm room where the cones have to ripen, open up and give their seeds. In nurseries, cones unfold in a couple of days, as they are placed in a bunker with a temperature of 40-42 degrees and kept there until the flakes open. But in an apartment, it’s difficult to recreate such a climate, and it’s not necessary. It is enough to put the cones in a cardboard narrow box and put it on the heating battery.
If you don’t have batteries, put them on the heated floor or take them to the kitchen and hide them at the top of the highest cabinet. Under the ceiling, the temperature is always higher, so the ripening process will go faster. During drying, you will hear crackling scales. When the bump is fully opened, shake out the seeds by tapping the “nose” on a hard surface.
There will be almost no seeds in an open or half-opened cone, since they will have time to spill out on the ground, so look for cones with tightly closed scales
And you can not collect seeds, but purchase in a nursery. But choose a trusted company, since the seeds can be stale, stored in warehouses for many years, and the germination rate will be weak. The best option is 1-2 year old seeds.
Stratification, it is hardening
Under natural conditions, cones on spruce open by January. Seeds fly upwind to take root in new places. Until April, they lie in the snow and go through a hardening process called stratification. At home, you will have to provide the seeds with a similar hardening so that the plants sprout together and have good immunity.
If the winter turned out to be snowless, then divide the collected seeds into 2 parts and immediately sow one of them in open ground. Sprinkle them with snow, and the hardening process will take place naturally. Christmas trees are not sown on the snow cover. Sprout the second part at home, and then compare which inputs were more friendly.
How to stratify seeds at home:
- Make a 1% solution of potassium permanganate (per 100 ml of water - 1 g. Potassium permanganate).
- Immerse the seeds in it and disinfect for 2-3 hours.
- Put the seeds on a towel or paper and dry.
- Pour into a linen bag.
- Put the bag in a glass jar, close and place on the coldest shelf in the refrigerator
- In this form, let future Christmas trees sleep until spring (and at the February gathering - until the 20th of June).
Why and how to stratify seeds at home: //diz-cafe.com/vopros-otvet/stratifikatsiya-semyan-v-domashnih-usloviyah.html
Blue tree seed planting options
After hibernation, the seeds must be woken up. To do this, they are immersed overnight in a solution of water and trace elements (root formation stimulator + antifungal drug foundationazole). A humid environment will restore cell structure and accelerate germination.
In the morning, they start landing. To do this, use different methods. You can choose one, the most convenient, but it is better to divide the seeds into equal parts and try each option. So you can clearly see which method is most effective for your specific case and for plants in your area.
Method # 1 - in the open ground
If spring frosts by April have passed - sow the trees directly into the ground. To do this, bring down the greenhouse and fill it with low-lying peat mixed with coarse sand and earth from coniferous forests. You can immediately make complex fertilizers for conifers or feed them later when the sprouts come out of the ground.
Land from the forest is a necessary component for the good growth of spruce, as it contains mycelium of mushrooms. The mushroom picker in real conditions helps the coniferous root system to receive moisture and nutrition, takes away harmful substances from the soil. The symbiosis of mushrooms and Christmas trees is so close that without mycorrhizal fungi, blue spruce build up the root system sluggishly and often die.
When planting blue spruces in open ground, seeds are often dispersed, since germination usually does not exceed 50 percent, but then pinch the weakest shoots
- The soil is densely compacted.
- Lay the seeds on top, at a distance of 3-4 cm from each other.
- Peat is mixed with coniferous sawdust in equal proportions and sprinkled with this mixture of seeds in a layer up to a centimeter.
- The earth is sprayed.
- Close the greenhouse with a film.
- Periodically check the humidity and, if necessary, ventilate the greenhouse.
- Shoots will appear in 3 weeks. They are thinned out, leaving strong plants at a distance of 6 cm.
- They are sprayed daily in the morning, but without fanaticism, since excess moisture will lead to the development of a "black leg" - a viral infection that can destroy all the material.
In this form, the Christmas trees grow a year, until next spring. In the summer, protect them from the sun and overdrying the soil.
Method # 2 - in plastic containers
Sprout fir trees at home. To do this, prepare wide plastic containers with lids (from under salads, cookies, etc.) or planting pots.
Disposable plastic food containers are inexpensive, but it’s convenient to germinate spruce seeds in them, as the container is tightly closed by a lid
The order of work is as follows:
- Fill containers for 2-3 volumes with soil mixture: 3 parts of dry sand + 1 part of peat.
- Thoroughly spray the ground.
- Sprinkle seeds on top of moistened soil.
- Lightly move the soil with your hand or fork to deepen the seeds.
- The lid is closed, and if not, they cover the pot with foil and put the containers in a warm place where direct sunlight does not fall.
- As the soil dries up, spraying is carried out.
- When the sprouts hatch and become visible, the containers are slightly opened so that the plants are properly ventilated.
- In summer, the pots are taken out into the fresh air, under the shade of large trees, and in the winter they are returned to a room with a temperature of 10-15 degrees.
Young plants should be planted next spring, in May, when the soil warms up.Recent entries In April, I process roses so that no pests encroach on my beauties
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Hatching sprouts of blue spruce are afraid of high humidity, since it leads to various fungal infections and destroys all planting material
Method # 3 - in self-roll
A very unusual, but convenient way to germinate the seeds is planting in a cigarette. This option is good for those summer residents who do not have large window sills, so there is no place to store containers with seedlings.
Scooter is a long tape consisting of several layers (like roll).
- The outer layer is a soft substrate from under the laminate or other building materials (length - not limited, width - 10-15 cm).
- The second layer is toilet paper or napkins.
- The third is fertile soil.
The essence of the technology is that a seed pad is prepared for the seeds from the above components:
- roll out a substrate on the table, cut into long ribbons;
- toilet paper is laid on top of it, filling the entire area of the substrate;
- the paper is moistened with water from a spray bottle so that it is saturated with moisture;
- spruce seeds are spread on the edge of the paper after 2 cm so that the lionfish protrudes slightly beyond the borders of the roll, and the seeds lie on wet paper (the seeds should stick to the wet base);
- a layer of fertile soil is poured on top;
- gently twist the tape into a roll, tighten with an elastic band so as not to unwind;
- put the roll vertically on a cardboard or saucer, seeds up;
- spray the resulting self-roll on top;
- cover with a film, creating a greenhouse effect, and put in a warm, sunny place.
- after hardening the seeds, the film is removed, and the seedlings are taken care of, periodically wetting the top of the self-roll.
- in this form, the Christmas trees sit until next spring.
The technology can be clearly seen on the video:
How to plant a spruce from cuttings
Professional gardeners prefer to plant decorative conifers by the cuttings method in order to completely preserve varietal characters. Blue spruce can also be cut. This is done in spring, in early May, when active sap flow begins in the tree.
For cuttings of blue spruce, young lateral shoots are selected, which are located on horizontal lignified branches. They are carefully ripped off against shoot growth
Rules for harvesting twigs
For cuttings using twigs from Christmas trees, whose age is from four to ten years. Such trees have a maximum percentage of survival of cuttings. To prepare planting material, you need to find branches with lateral shoots and carefully tear off 2-3 cuttings 6-10 cm long.
It is necessary to tear so that at the end of each handle there is a “heel” - a thickening, the remainder of the older wood. It prevents the release of resin, which can clog the lower cells of the seedling and block moisture from entering the tree. That is why conifers do not cut with a knife, i.e. do not cut, but tear.
A thickening at the end of the spruce shaft, called the heel, accelerates the process of root formation, since moisture freely passes through it into the seedling. The material is harvested on a cloudy day or in the early morning. Torn branches are immediately packed in a plastic bag so that they do not dry out, and are planted on the same day.
If you hold the cuttings for 2 hours before planting in the root formation stimulator, then the fir-tree will grow its roots in 1.5 months. Without stimulants, this process will stretch for 3 months or more.
Cuttings at home
All of the above methods of planting blue spruce seeds are suitable for cuttings. Therefore, here we will focus on other interesting options.
One hundred percent blue color is preserved only in Christmas trees grown by cuttings, so it is better to look for a suitable tree in the city and pick the right number of paws from it
There are 2 options - sprouting in the refrigerator or in a roll.
Let's start with the fridge. If you managed to pluck decorative fir trees by accident, and nothing is ready for planting in the ground - use the trick of an experienced gardener. You need to immerse all the cuttings for an hour in water, and then plant them in wet sand, deepening by 2 cm. Sand is poured into a plastic bag, and twigs are also added there. The package is tied - and in the refrigerator. Need a temperature of +3 degrees. And forget about them for 2 weeks. Next - the usual landing in the greenhouse. With this technique, the roots will appear by the end of the second month. When germinating in the refrigerator, do not treat the cuttings with stimulants, as the degree of survival will decrease.
When cutting in self-rolled cigarettes, the principle is the same as during seed propagation: substrate + wipes + soil. Just pay attention that the part of the Christmas tree that will lie on the toilet paper should be cleaned of needles, and the step between the plants is 5 cm.
It happens that you saw the right plant out of season, but you want to pick up cuttings. Tear boldly and try to “tame” them at home in the following way:
- clear half of each twig from needles;
- dip the base in root (powder);
- put the Christmas trees in the prepared “roll”: roll out a paper towel, lay a layer of moss on it, moisten it and lay the branches so that the bare bottom is on the moss;
- twist everything into a roll, pull it with an elastic band;
- put vertically in a bag;
- Tie the bag tightly and hang it on the window.
During the winter, half of the cuttings will take root, and in May you will plant them in a greenhouse.
We also recommend that you familiarize yourself with the preparation of conifers for frost: //diz-cafe.com/ozelenenie/zimnyaya-spyachka-xvojnikov.html
Some gardeners use the usual dense film for the outer layer, but it does not have heat-insulating properties, so seedlings germinate more slowly
Video in the topic:
The nuances of landing in the ground
When planting in a greenhouse without preliminary germination, remember:
- The optimum temperature is at least +13 degrees of air and +10 degrees of soil.
- To prevent root decay at the bottom of the greenhouse, a drainage of 5 cm thick is created from gravel and small pebbles.
- Blue spruce trees like light soil.
- The distance from the film or glass that closes the greenhouse to the seedlings is at least 20 cm.
- Cuttings are planted at an angle of 30 degrees.
- Buried in the soil 1-2 cm.
- Humidity is checked on the "ceiling" - large drops should not hang, only a fine mesh of dust.
- It is necessary to air daily.
It is also important to note that for the first month the greenhouse is shaded, throwing burlap or spanbond on top to make the sun less aggressive.
The roots on the branches will appear in two months, but they need to be transplanted very carefully, since when transplanting into the ground they often break off
How to arrange group and solitary plantings of decorative conifers in the garden: //diz-cafe.com/ozelenenie/dekorativnye-xvojniki.html
All methods described in the article are suitable for propagation of any coniferous plants. So, starting with a blue spruce, then you can grow your own garden a whole garden of evergreen beauties. The main thing is to find the most successful variant of germination. And this is a matter of practice.