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Description of honeysuckle and care

Photo description of honeysuckle and caring for her

Description of honeysuckle and care, as well as a lot of things about it, you will need to know to get a good harvest of these tasty and unusual berries. Honeysuckle is a shrub with very dense branching and a height of 1 to 2.5 m. It has a fairly dense crown with a diameter of 1.5 to 3 m. The shape of the bush can be round, obverse-conical or semi-circular. On skeletal branches the bark is yellowish, brown or grayish. It has a densely branched tap-type root system.

Foliage can be of different shapes and sizes — from oval-elliptical to broadly oval. As a rule, they are narrow, small and oblong. The flowers are quite large, tubular in shape, bisexual and have two-flowered inflorescences. Flowering occurs at the same time as the leaves appear.

Honeysuckle produces large berries up to 2 centimeters in length and 1 centimeter in diameter. The berries themselves are dark blue in color, juicy, slightly reminiscent of blueberries in appearance. Unripe berries are green, like grass, and until fully ripe they are very dark.

Due to the fact that honeysuckle becomes covered with bloom during the ripening period, the berry acquires a blue color. The shape of the berries can be completely different: from the usual oval, to pear-shaped, spindle-shaped, ovoid and elongated. The taste of the fruit is sweet and sour with a slight aroma close to wild berries, like blueberries.

Proper planting of honeysuckle

Proper planting of honeysuckle is the first thing you need to know before you decide to plant this crop on your property. You need to know that honeysuckle is a very capricious crop and for it, the correct location on the site is extremely important. If you need active and good development of the shrub, as well as its fruiting, then it is best to plant it in a place where there is a lot of sunlight. Especially, you should pay close attention to those places where there are no cold drafts, but there is fertile soil. Don’t forget about proper care of honeysuckle, which is also an important factor.

There are also places where honeysuckle will grow extremely poorly, namely hills, shaded areas, areas with dry and sandy soil.

Many honeysuckle gardeners recommend having about three different varieties. This recommendation is explained by the fact that cross-pollination of the bush will help to achieve a good taste of the berries. That is why it is worth looking for a slightly larger area for honeysuckle.

Edible honeysuckle is characterized by early bud break. For this reason, the best time for planting will be autumn. Usually, only rooted cuttings are used as planting material.

The shrub requires a hole with a depth of about 45 centimeters and dimensions of 50 by 50 cm. The distance between the dug holes should be about 2 m, and between the rows about 3 m. In principle, you can plant quite densely, a little less than 1 meter, if this There will be a collective boarding. After planting, you need to apply fertilizer to the soil from the holes:

  • Berry giant – 750 grams
  • Nitrophoska - about 3 tablespoons
  • Wood ash – 500 grams
Next you need to cover the holes and wait 5 days.
After this, you can start planting shrubs, but this should be done very carefully, you must not allow the roots to become tangled and air pockets to appear. And plant the necks of seedlings about 3 or 2 centimeters, no more.

As spring approaches, seedlings need care to ensure good development in the future. That is, first you need to start hilling the bushes, then digging up the earth near the bushes at a distance of about 7 centimeters, so that there is no damage to the root system. After these processes, mulching is done with peat, or manure and humus.

Propagation of edible honeysuckle

Propagation of edible honeysuckle is one of the most important topics in cultivation. Thanks to knowledge in this area, you can multiply the number of berries during the harvest season several times. And there is nothing complicated in this process; the main thing to know is that honeysuckle is a crop that is quite simply propagated by seeds. Due to the fact that this crop is a cross-pollinated plant, there is almost no way to preserve the properties in the offspring; in short, the emerging varieties are always worse than the parent. But no one excludes the emergence of berries with excellent taste. As a result, the method of seed propagation of honeysuckle is used only for selection or for landscaping purposes, quite rarely - by gardeners.

So, how to propagate honeysuckle by seed? First, you need to crush the ripe berries on thin paper, moving the seeds 1 centimeter apart from each other. After this procedure, the seeds should dry. You can write the date on paper and roll up the seeds for storage.

At a temperature of about 20 degrees, they can be stored for about two years. But to speed up the process, you need to collect the seeds in June in order to immediately sow them in moist soil. The seeds are buried by 1 mm due to their small size. For convenience, sow honeysuckle in a box and then put everything in a greenhouse, covering it with film or glass. Remember to ensure that the soil does not dry out. Honeysuckle shoots usually appear after 3 weeks.

The boxes are taken outside in late autumn. Under the snow, such seedlings survive the winter very easily. You can sow summer seeds towards the end of October. In this case, the sown seeds in the box must be left under the snow for the winter. Thanks to this process, the seeds will have a natural stratification and will germinate in the spring. To make seedlings appear faster, you can bring the boxes into the greenhouse in April.

After the seedlings reach 3 centimeters in height, as well as the appearance of 2 pairs of leaves, it will be necessary to plant them in a weed-free bed.
In open soil, it must be done in the form of a 5 by 5 centimeter pattern. In the future, you will need frequent watering, getting rid of weeds, and also loosening. After a year, it will be necessary to change the scheme for seedlings: 20 by 20 centimeters. Fruiting of seedlings occurs approximately in the 3rd year. It is during this period that you will need to choose bushes with the most delicious and large berries without bitterness. You can use unsuitable ones for a green fence, since honeysuckle is cut quite well.

How to care for edible honeysuckle

How to care for edible honeysuckle is a very common question from gardeners who have not encountered this plant. In fact, caring for this crop is no different from other shrubs. You definitely need to know that honeysuckle is a very durable plant. Despite the care, the first 5 years of growth will not be very intense, but the fruits can be obtained for 20 years in one place. That is, it is already becoming clear that honeysuckle lives for a very long time and has been successfully bearing fruit all this time.

However, in the 6th year of honeysuckle growth, in order to get a large harvest, we strongly recommend that you follow all the care tips:

Soil deoxidation - this operation exists in order to organize the most favorable neutral soil conditions for honeysuckle. This is done about once a year and always in the summer. Deoxidation can be done using ash and water, in the proportion of 1 liter of ash per bucket of water.

Fertilizer and feeding — The end of autumn is the best time to feed shrubs. But the frequency of the operation is once every two years, or more precisely, — period in the form of a year. Fertilizing varies, but it is recommended to use the classic mixture: 5 kilograms of compost, 40 grams of superphosphate (double) and 100 grams of ash. In the spring, when the buds are getting ready to bloom, you need to use ammonium nitrate for fertilizer. Use in proportion: 15 grams per 1 m^2.

Working with soil — During the growth, fruiting and development of honeysuckle, it definitely needs loosening of the soil and weeding. Loosening in this case will help provide the roots of the shrub with the necessary air and retain water, and with the help of weeding, weeds are pulled out, which will interfere with the good growth of the crop. At the beginning of autumn, you need to dig up the soil to prepare for winter and the transition to the dormant stage.

Water - it has long been known that watering is the most important thing for a plant, especially during fruiting. For this reason, you need to water the crop daily, 1 bucket of water per bush. During the summer drought, you can increase the amount of watering to 2 buckets per bush.

Treatment with drugs - against diseases and pests, gardeners use the necessary drugs. Application period: August, no later. But if your berries do not show signs of pest damage, then you can skip the processing step.

When to prune honeysuckle

When to prune honeysuckle is a question asked by all gardeners who grow this crop. But besides this, many people wonder why they need to do pruning. Of course, the main reason — pleasant shape of the bushes, which is achieved only through pruning. When pruning, it is necessary to remove old branches so that young ones receive more sunlight. But in the first 5 years after planting, when the bush has not yet formed, pruning cannot be done. The best time for pruning is after 10 years of honeysuckle growth at the planting site.

Experienced gardeners prefer to prune only in the spring, and best of all, in April. It’s good to do all this together with feeding, it will be much more useful.