Characteristics and features of growing honeysuckle shiny Lemon Beauty (Lemon Beauty)
This honeysuckle, both in name and in the appearance of the leaves, and in its decorative merits, is indeed brilliant and capable of decorating any garden or homestead for half a century. The brilliant honeysuckle Lemon Beauty (Lemon Beauty, Lemon Beauty) is one of the most preferred plants for landscape design. More details about it are later in the article.
This honeysuckle hails from Western China, where it grows in the highlands of Sichuan and Yunnan. This plant began to be cultivated in 2008.
Lemon Beauty is an evergreen shrub in the southern regions and a semi-evergreen shrub with partially falling leaves in the more northern regions. It can reach a height of 1.2 m and expand its domed crown to 1.5 m in diameter. Its thin, light brown shoots with an olive tint are covered with smooth, peeling bark. Foliage consists of small oval or ovoid glossy leaves.
This type of honeysuckle is also called variegated (variegate) culture for the heterogeneous color of foliage. At a young age, it has a lemon color with a dark green tint in the center of the leaf surface and along the veins. Foliage can also be painted in dark green with a beige frame. Small white flowers have no decorative value, and small (up to 6 mm in diameter) berries are not edible. In one place, the honeysuckle bushes of the brilliant Lemon Beauty are able to live up to 50 years or more.
Honeysuckle Lemon Beauty is characterized not only by its high decorative qualities, but also by its sufficient cold resistance, as well as undemanding soil quality.
Did you know? All 250 species of honeysuckle that exist today are divided into 3 types: erect, creeping and climbing. The fruits of most erect and all creeping and winding honeysuckles are inedible.
Frost and drought resistance
Winter hardiness of this type of honeysuckle is defined as average. The optimum winter temperature for it is -15 ° C, however, the plant can withstand a temperature drop to -25 ° C for a rather long time. Temperature zones 5b – 6–7 are quite comfortable for this honeysuckle, however, in young bushes, apical shoots can freeze in conditions of zone 5. Not being drought tolerant, the plant suffers from moisture deficiency during dry periods.
Advantages and disadvantages
- According to descriptions of landscape designers and amateur gardeners, Lemon Beauty honeysuckle has such positive qualities:
- excellent decorative properties;
- good winter hardiness;
- good resistance to diseases and pests;
- unpretentiousness in leaving;
- resistance to high temperatures and sunburn.
- The disadvantages include:
- lack of drought tolerance;
- medium and not high frost resistance;
- self-infertility, requiring third-party pollination to obtain seed material.
For those rare cases when seeds are required for the reproduction of this plant, it is necessary to plant additional bushes of this or other varieties of honeysuckle nearby for the purpose of third-party pollination of this self-infertile culture.
Planting seedlings of this honeysuckle is a fairly simple task, subject to the minimum agrotechnical rules.
Most often, brilliant honeysuckle is planted in late autumn.. Spring planting is complicated by the fact that the sap flow in the shoots of honeysuckle begins very early, often before the snow melts completely.Meanwhile, agrotechnical rules prescribe a landing precisely after the complete melting of snow. If seedlings with a closed root system are purchased, then planting can be carried out from spring to late autumn.
Site selection, well preparation
The most comfortably discussed honeysuckle feels in well-lit areas, not even afraid of sunburn, but it also tolerates light partial shade. The soil can be sandy, clayey, loamy, or even rocky. But if it is fertile, well-drained and moderately moist, then these are almost ideal conditions for the growth of Lemon Beauty.
At the bottom of the holes, it is desirable to lay a drainage layer 7-10 cm thick made of expanded clay, gravel or broken brick. A mixture is poured from the top layer of dug earth and humus in equal proportions with the addition of 70 g of superphosphate and 45 g of potassium sulfate.
Important! It is not recommended to plant Lemon Beauty honeysuckle under deciduous trees, since the leaves falling from them get stuck in the crown of the bush and inhibit its growth.
Selection and preparation of planting material
Most often, rooted cuttings are used as planting material. It should be borne in mind that green shoots are not suitable for rooting, which rot more often than develop the root system. The shoots of the current year, on which bark has already formed, are best suited.
Prepared for planting in a permanent place seedlings should have a well-developed and intact root system. For purchased seedlings, it is necessary to check the integrity of the roots and be sure to cut out the damaged roots.
Since the crown of the honeysuckle bush reaches 1.5 m in diameter, the distance between the holes dug for seedlings should be at least 1.5 m. The depth of the holes is usually 0.3 m and the diameter 0.25 m.
The process of direct landing in the ground proceeds as follows:
- In the prepared hole, as described above, a low mound is created.
- Straightened roots are placed on it.
- Then they are covered with the remaining earth.
- The root neck is either flush with the ground, or deepened by 2 cm, not allowing it to rise above the surface of the earth.
- Around the planted plant, bumps are formed, into which a bucket of water is poured.
- To prevent the rapid evaporation of moisture, the moist soil surface is mulched using sawdust, chopped peat or dry humus.
Since honeysuckle prefers moist soil, in dry, rainless weather, humidity must be maintained on its own, watering the plant regularly and with sufficient intensity. At the same time, unlike most other plants, Lemon Beauty tolerates some excess moisture quite well.
However, this does not mean at all that honeysuckle bushes can create marsh conditions with impunity, which inevitably lead to rotting of the root system. Each irrigation and every rainfall must be accompanied by loosening the soil in order to avoid the formation of a crust, which prevents full air exchange in the root system.
Important! The superficial rooting of the shiny honeysuckle requires very careful, i.e., shallow loosening.
Since the ornamental plant is famous for its leafy robe, for the active growth of green mass, the bush needs nitrogen. Humus, introduced into the planting hole, contains this element during the first season in sufficient quantity. In subsequent spring seasons, additional nitrogen is required in the soil using organic fertilizers in the form of solutions of mullein in water in a ratio of 1:10 or bird droppings in water in a ratio of 1:15.
You can also use the introduction of mineral fertilizers in the form of a solution of 30 g of ammonium nitrate or urea in a bucket of water. Such feeding is carried out with an interval of 2 weeks until mid-June.In autumn, the plant should be fed with potassium in the form of potassium sulfate, which will strengthen the immune system of the bush and help it more easily overcome winter adversities.
The decorative qualities of brilliant honeysuckle are improved by regular pruning of dried, weather-damaged or diseased branches, as well as giving the crown the necessary shape. In this regard, brilliant honeysuckle can compete with the famous boxwood.
The average winter hardiness, which allows the culture to withstand frosts down to -25 ° C, although not continuously, for a rather long time, still requires additional measures for winter shelter in regions with severe frosts and low snowy winters (especially in relation to young plants). The soil around the plants is mulched with a 10-centimeter layer of sawdust, chopped peat, conifer needles or dry humus. Young plants themselves are covered with non-woven garden material to avoid freezing of apical shoots. And, as already mentioned, it is useful in the autumn to feed plants with potassium to strengthen the immune system.
Honeysuckle shiny Lemon Beauty can be propagated by:
Propagation by seed is rarely used due to its complexity and lack of warranty.that the output will be a plant with exactly the same qualities as that of the mother bush.
Most often, this honeysuckle is propagated through cuttings.. For this, as already emphasized, young green shoots are not suitable. It is best to take shoots of the current season, on which bark has already formed. The optimal weather for harvesting cuttings is a wet day. You can also use early morning, when there is still dew on the leaves. Most actively, the roots are formed on medium-sized shoots.Since on the branches of the honeysuckle brilliant distance between neighboring nodes is small, the shoots are divided into several cuttings. On each of them, a cut is made perpendicular to its axis 2 cm above the node and 1 cm below it. The bottom cut is done obliquely. The stalk freed from the leaves is planted in the ground, after which it is regularly watered. Cuttings take root about a month after planting.
Did you know? Edible honeysuckle in nature is found only in Sakhalin, Kamchatka and in only a few places in Eastern Siberia.
The drooping lower branches of the brilliant honeysuckle form layers in contact with moist ground. They are dug up and transplanted to another place in the form of seedlings.
Diseases and Pests
Shiny honeysuckle Lemon Beauty in comfortable growing conditions usually shows good resistance to diseases and pests.
However, with gross violations of the rules of agricultural technology or with very unfavorable growing conditions during the cold and rainy summers, it can become sick:
- Powdery Mildew, causing on young branches, and after and on the whole bush, a plaque resembling cotton wool, as a result of which the foliage dries and falls, and the shoots are deformed. As a prophylaxis, autumn harvesting and burning of fallen leaves are used, and sulfur-containing preparations in the form of colloidal sulfur, Cumulus or Scora are used to combat this fungal disease.
- Ramulariosis, which provokes the formation on the leaf surfaces of brown spots of irregular configuration, which ultimately lead to leaf decay. In addition, this fungal disease disrupts the metabolism in the plant and thereby significantly weakens the bush. Since the fungus hibernates in the soil, autumn digging and tillage with 1% copper sulfate with the addition of soap serve as a good preventive measure. It is also a therapeutic agent in the treatment of the bush.
- Tuberculosis, forming on the branches red growths with spores of the fungus that fall on neighboring shoots and create mycelium in the cortex. This leads to inhibition of the branches and drying out of the leaves.Affected shoots are cut and destroyed. As a prevention and treatment in spring, the plant is treated twice with Bordeaux liquid and copper oxychloride.
Of the pests, honeysuckle is most actively attacked:
- Honeysuckle ticks, manifested by wrinkling of the sheet surfaces, their browning and twisting, which leads to falling of the foliage. To prevent the occurrence and destruction of these pests, Rogor, Confidor, Actellik or other acaricides are used.
- Honeysuckle aphidswhich, actively multiplying, suck out nutritious juices from foliage and shoots, leading to leaf decay and inhibition of growth of young shoots. To prevent aphid attacks in spring, honeysuckle bushes are sprayed with Confidor or Aktellik, and in the summer they fight the pest by treating the bushes with tobacco infusion with soap, as well as garlic and pepper infusions. At the same time, the preparations “Eleksar”, “Rogor”, “Aktara” and “Confidor” help well.
- Gooseberry mothswhose caterpillars love honeysuckle and can completely eat the whole bush. They are struggling with spraying with Fufanon, Fitoverm, Karbofos or Aktellik.
Brilliant in all senses, Lemon Beauty honeysuckle during its cultivation has turned into one of the most sought-after objects of landscape design. The decorative qualities of the plant, its unpretentiousness in growing and resistance to diseases and cold make it increasingly popular among owners of gardens, summer cottages and personal plots.