Himalayan Pine - growing a fluffy beauty

A decorative Himalayan pine tree also known as the Wallichiana (pinus Wallichiana) or Griffith (pinus Griffithii McClell) pine. It was named after the Danish surgeon and botanist Nathaniel Wallich. In 1823, a plant in cultivated form was brought into England by the English breeder E. B. Lambert. Later, the conifer began to grow in Russia.

Himalayan Pine - growing a fluffy beauty

View brief information

  • Color : needles are gray-green or bluish-green with silver tint.
  • Height : about 23-25 ​​m.
  • Crown width : 20 m.
  • Landing features : sunny place with diffused daylight. Landing pattern: 4x4.5 m.
  • Growing regions : in the natural environment, pine grows on the territory of eastern Afghanistan, western China, northern Myanmar and Nepal. Distributed in the Himalayas. Not suitable for northern areas.
  • Immunity : good winter hardiness, high resistance against fungal diseases.
  • Life expectancy : about 300 years.

general characteristics

In the natural environment, the Himalayan pine grows in eastern Afghanistan, western China, northern Myanmar and Nepal, and is also common in the Himalayas.

The plant is successfully cultivated in almost all CIS countries, with the exception of the northern zones. They are grown in Ukraine, in Belarus, in the territory of Batumi and Sochi. Suitable for landing in the middle lane and in the south of Russia.

Description of external parameters:

  • in the wild, the height reaches 50 m, diameter - 20 m, in household and industrial areas, the dimensions are 23x20 m;
  • the crown is loose, broad-pyramidal, consists of long flexible branches that begin to form in the lowest part of the trunk;
  • needles are very long (up to 20 cm), bluish or bluish-green with a silver tint, thin (1 mm), collected several pieces in bundles, stored on a tree for 3-4 years;
  • in young specimens, the bark is smooth, dark gray, in adults it acquires an ashy tone, contains numerous detachments and cracks;
  • a young growth bare, light green in color with a reflection;
  • the cones are red or light brown, 32x7 cm in size, cylindrical in shape, in some conifers they are straight, in others they are curved;
  • seeds are large - about 5 mm in length;
  • the root system is branched, close to the surface, the central stem can reach 1.5 m depth.

This variety is a long-liver - life expectancy is about 300 years.

Winter hardiness is good - adult specimens are able to withstand lowering temperatures to -25-30 ° C without insulation. But in snowy winters, branches often break under the weight of snow. A long winter thaw is also dangerous for this tree - the plant wakes up prematurely and freezes when the frost returns.

Growing Features

Successful cultivation of a crop depends on several factors - the quality of the seedling, the planting site, the composition of the soil, and also further care.

Seedling Selection

Pine tree loves to grow in windless areas.

To get a plant with all the signs and characteristics of this variety, you should contact a specialized nursery.

When choosing planting material, you need to adhere to some rules.

  1. Buy seedlings with a closed root system or in containers. In such conifers, the underground part is well developed and in the process of transplanting to the site, the risk of its drying out and injury is excluded.
  2. Take copies should be 2-3 years old.
  3. When buying, it is necessary to carefully examine the aerial part - it must be lively, saturated green, without black or red spots on the surface of shoots and needles - they indicate infection with diseases.
  4. The optimal height of the seedling is 60-70 cm.

Site and soil preparation

Choose a site for landing should be based on the following requirements:

  • planting should be in a place where there are no winds, preferably from the south or southeast side, along the fence or near the outbuilding;
  • a bed with diffused daylight is suitable, so the plant will be protected from the scorching spring sun and will not be affected during the February thaw;
  • the soil needs light, loose, not alkaline without stagnation of moisture.

The landing site is prepared in two weeks - it is freed from plant debris and weeds. To improve the structure of clay soil, you need to make a couple of buckets of sand, if you plan to grow on sandy loams, it is worth adding the same amount of clay.

The acidified area is sprinkled with calcite, dolomite flour or chalk at the rate of 300 g per 1 m².

Landing technique

For the full growth and development of Himalayan pine trees, sufficient space is required: the optimal distance between seedlings is 3-4 m, the distance in the row is 4.5-5 m.

Pits are pulled out 2-3 times larger than the size of an earthen coma of a tree. Drain from pebbles, gravel or brick chips fall asleep to the bottom. Then, half is filled with a nutrient composition of sand, peat and sod land (2: 1: 1). The plant is lowered so that the root neck is 5-6 cm above the soil surface.

The voids are filled up with soil, compacted, watered abundantly through holes dug at a distance of 50 cm from the near-stem zone. After that, mulch with a thick layer of pine sawdust, wood chips or peat. Mulch will protect the roots from drying out and hypothermia.

Basic care

All care for this culture comes down to several mandatory events.

Watering

In the first years of life, young pines need regular and frequent watering, especially in dry summers - at least 5 times per season. For one seedling take 2 buckets of water.

Abundant hydration is required in early spring before the awakening of the kidneys and in the fall a month before the onset of persistent frost. Consumption per plant - up to 40 liters.

Young conifers respond positively to the sprinkling procedure, which saturates the crown with moisture and prevents the appearance of parasites. Irrigation is carried out every week in the summer in the evening hours to avoid the risk of burning by the sun.

Loosening and mulch

Good care will keep the tree healthy

After each irrigation, surface loosening of the soil is carried out, it helps to maintain its moisture and breathable qualities. This manipulation is combined with weeding the aisle and removing weed shoots.

At the end, the near-trunk zone is mulched with peat or pine sawdust, which protects the roots and soil from drying out, and also prevents the growth of unnecessary vegetation.

Top dressing

Complex fertilizers, which are applied twice a season, will help stimulate development and increase immunity against diseases.

In early spring, nitrous preparations are used (a solution of urea, nitrofoski or ammofoski at the rate of 30 g per 20 l of water). A bucket of nutrient fluid is poured under one tree. Such top dressing contributes to the intensive growth of young branches.

In late July or early August, pines are fed with a mineral composition: superphosphate and potassium nitrate - 30 g per 10 l of water. These components strengthen the root system, increase frost resistance and help maintain the decorativeness of the tree until spring. 5 liters of working solution are poured under one copy.

Pruning

This plant tolerates a shaping haircut. Light pruning of shoots is allowed - a third of the length, if you prune more, the tree may not survive the stress and die.

To form a dense and lush crown in September, they cut off 30% of the growth of the current year.

Sanitary pruning will be mandatory to remove all branches damaged by winds, frosts and diseases. Cutting is carried out using an oblique sterile knife or secateurs. To avoid infection, the wounds are irrigated with a solution of copper sulfate, then they are covered with garden varnish or powdered with charcoal.

Preparing for the winter

Young Griffith pines need good insulation, especially when grown in regions with changing weather conditions - Moscow Region, Leningrad Region, and middle latitudes.

The shoots of this variety are very fragile, so it is not worth using twine or a rope to garter to the central conductor. The aboveground part is carefully wrapped in burlap. Such a shelter will protect against freezing, the excessive severity of snow and sunlight in early spring.

Saplings wrapped in burlap will have good access to fresh air.

Some gardeners use another shelter - fir spruce branches, which are laid on a pre-equipped frame.

In addition to insulating the crown, it is necessary to mulch the near-trunk zone with peat or sawdust.

All work on the preparation of conifers for wintering is carried out in late autumn, when the temperature drops to the level of -5-10 ° С.

Breeding

Pine will be a decoration for your garden

Himalayan pine trees can be grown from seeds of an adult and healthy tree from the age of 10 years.

Planting material is collected in the fall (late September or early October) when the cone is fully ripe and the seeds are thrown out. They are dried at 40 ° C, stratified for a month in a refrigerator in wet sand.

Sowing is carried out in seedlings or containers filled with drainage and a nutrient mixture of sand and peat (1: 1). The depth of planting seeds is 1-1.5 cm. Plantings are irrigated with warm water, covered with a transparent film and put in a cool place with a temperature of 18-19 ° C and scattered daylight.

The germination process can last from 2 to 3 months. To seedlings did not die, they need to be regularly moistened, aired every day. After the emergence of seedlings, the shelter is removed, they continue to water, periodically loosen the soil and remove weeds.

Growing seedlings obtained at home, spend another year. Transplanted to the site in the fall - at the beginning or middle of September.

Pests and diseases

Pine has increased immunity against many diseases and parasites. Provided good care and compliance with all the rules of agricultural technology, even rust does not damage it.

The main reason for the appearance of diseases and harmful insects is thickening, lack of sanitary cutting, the use of already infected seedlings for planting.

In case of rust damage, all damaged organs are removed, and the crown and soil around the near-stem zone are irrigated with Ridomil Gold or copper sulfate solution twice with an interval of 7 days.

When invaded by a spider mite, scab, sawfly or moth, insecticides are used - Actellik, Aktaru or Angio.

Landscape application

A tall evergreen plant is often used to decorate park areas, alleys. Planted individually in household plots for decorating inconspicuous and problem areas.

Himalayan pine Griffith - an excellent option for the formation of forest and protective strips.

It goes well in group planting with chestnuts, evergreen cypresses and large-flowered magnolia. Some use the tree to create bonsai.

Reviews

Due to its good winter hardiness and excellent adaptive qualities in regions with moderate climatic conditions, many gardeners love this plant:

  • seedlings have a high survival rate, with regular watering and feeding, they develop a beautiful crown and delight with their decorativeness all year round;
  • after several years of cultivation, trees do not need to be sheltered for the winter, which facilitates maintenance;
  • tall conifers with a lush crown are great for shading different garden areas in the hot summer, protect from the wind and decorate any places on the site.

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