How to ensure the correct shape of the crown of ornamental trees in winter?

How to prepare a hedge for winter: instructions for taking care of needles, leaves and vines

: How to prepare a hedge for winter

A hedge in the cottage is not just a protection from the unexpected glances of others and clutter in the room. It filters and cleans the air, attracts birds and insects, strengthens the loose soil and protects it from weathering and dehydration, even reduces the noise created by vehicles.

In the end, it is simply a spectacular landscape decoration – voluminous greenery (and sometimes also blooming or changing the color of the leaves) instead of a group of conventional fences made of artificial materials.

Unlike wooden or metal fences, green ones require regular care and attention. It is feeding, pruning (sanitary and decorative), watering, and treatment against diseases and pests. Autumn is no exception – plants need to be properly prepared for winter, so that next season they will perfectly perform their function and enjoy a healthy look.

As you already know, depending on the plants used, hedges can be divided into: evergreen needles, deciduous and climbing (lianas).

Let’s look at competent winter preparation for each of these types of hedges.

How to prepare a hedge of conifers for winter

Autumn hedge care

Conifers are undoubtedly the most popular plants for the “classic” hedge. They are unpretentious in cultivation, durable, frost-resistant, resistant to gas and dust, have many decorative varieties of all colors and sizes. Most often in our latitudes in landscape design use the Western Thuja, although other options are also possible.

To create such a living sign from the views of the wind and other people, in addition to thuja, various spruces (usually Canadian, pointed, black, etc.), cypresses, junipers (usually slash, horizontal, etc.), fir (from conifers also used Korean fir, Glat t-Frauß, balsamic vinegar, etc.), rarer pines (mountain pine, Weymouth pine, etc.) and fabrics. Some exotic lovers, to surprise others, look for particularly unusual species or needles, such as thin larch, microbiota, or pseudo-core for your site.

Many juniper species are intermediate hosts for the pathogen of a dangerous fruit tree disease, rust. If your site has a garden, it is worth refusing to use this culture as part of a hedge.

The main advantage of such a hedge is its decorativeness throughout the season, and you can control the height of plants, growth rate and shape – by selecting certain varieties and forming crowns (decorative curls of needles).

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What treatments do conifers need to survive the winter?

The first thing to think about is winter watering (it is especially important if the autumn was dry). It should be done in time before the soil freezes – the signal to start it can be a full flight of deciduous trees on the site. Toward the end of October, the rootstocks are cleaned of dirt and 50-150 liters of water is poured under each needle – the older the plant, the more moisture it needs.

Watering is not only done during the one-hour fall rains of the season, or if you have clay soil, or if you have trees growing in low-lying areas where water is constantly stagnant, because. This can backfire and cause root rot.

Autumn fertilization of conifers is carried out no later than one month before the first frost. It is not advisable to fertilize them later, as new immature shoots can freeze over the winter. Choose special complexes for conifers marked “autumn” or “autumn” (Florovit, Agricola, Fertic, Bona Forte, etc.), you can also use superphosphate. Dry fertilizer is applied under the digging or scattered in the bedding circles close to the trunk and watered.

Conifers need nutrition if they are to look well-groomed and healthy. However, fertilizer should be applied in accordance with the rules. Find out which ones.

In addition, the last pruning of conifers in the season should be done about a month before the onset of persistent cold weather – unless, of course, your hedge is in the free-growing category. First it is necessary to remove weak shoots, old, dry and broken branches, and then (if desired) to thin and correct the shape of the crown, slightly reducing the number and length of new annual shoots.

How to prepare a hedge for winter

It is important to carry out a preventive fall treatment of plants against diseases and pests. Choose broad-spectrum insecticides (Aliot, Aktara, Fufanon Nova, Komandor, Alatar, etc.) and spray conifers on a dry, sunny and windless day, diluting the preparation according to the instructions. During treatment, the thermometer should not fall to the red mark, as most drugs are effective at temperatures below 5°C. A prophylactic fungicide treatment can be done a little later, but also before frost arrives. Use one of the following preparations: HOM, Oxyhom, Ordan, Abiga-Pic or 1% Bordeaux liquid (diluted according to the instructions). During the procedure, make sure that the solution gets not only on the needles and trunk of the tree, but also on the root zone, because pathogenic microorganism spores may be present.

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Remember that prolonged frosts without snow cover can disrupt the root system and severely damage your hedge. If winters in your region are consistently snowy, you should mulch plant bedding circles near the trunk with a layer of mulch at least 10 cm to prevent such a situation in the fall.

Autumn hedge care

Although people usually try to choose frost-resistant plants for growing green hedges, which can easily survive the winters of the midlands without covering, young conifers may suffer from frost and spring sun burns in the first 2-3 years after planting. So take care of competent plant protection in autumn – usually with the onset of the first frost, but before the snow falls.

When the plants are spread out in the hedge, you should first tie their branches with twine or netting and give the crown a cone shape, so that they do not break off from the abundance of wet snow. Then wrap a rope or spunbond around each shrub or tree to keep the air and sunlight out.

Protect your conifers from strong gusts of wind, freezing rain and wet, sticky snow until winter sets in.

shaping trees and shrubs

Shaping trees and bushes


Topiary of trees is necessary for both ornamental and fruit crops. In the first case, the formation of trees and shrubs has a purely aesthetic orientation and serves to give the crown a beautiful shape. In the second one, it is carried out in order to create a strong skeleton, even distribution and regulation of the growth of skeletal branches, normalization of the yield load on each of them. Since each option faces completely different tasks, they are carried out according to different technologies and rules.

Formation of fruit trees

The correctness of the formation of the crown in a young sapling, just starting to grow, directly affects its strength and longevity. This is especially important for fruit trees, which are under additional stress from the harvest. Forming pruning allows you to create a strong skeleton and give the crown the appropriate configuration.

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Shaping fruit trees

basic principles

In forming pruning of fruit trees, the following procedures are performed:

  • Damaged and withered parts, which deteriorate the appearance of the plant and increase the risk of tooth decay, are removed;
  • the crown is thinned, annoying branches are cut out, and the inner part is lightened, which improves the growth of fruit-bearing shoots;
  • the previously created shape and diameter of the crown is maintained;
  • a strong skeleton is formed;
  • the growth and fruiting of the tree is regulated;
  • shoots within the crown are subdued;
  • rejuvenation of the plant takes place by removing old shoots and making room for the growth of young shoots.

After such a cardinal event, the ratio of the volume of the crown and root system changes, the number of sucking roots increases, which contributes to an additional intake of nutrients, production of organic matter, improvement of water, carbohydrate and nitrogen metabolism.

To achieve all these results, it is necessary to observe the established timing of pruning:

  • in the middle belt, it is carried out about March before the beginning of the sap movement;
  • In areas with a warm climate, formation can be carried out in autumn, after the fall of leaves;
  • Berry bushes with an early beginning of the growing season can be shaped after the harvest or before winter;
  • Conifers can be pruned in late June, when shoot growth stops;
  • Regulatory shaping, aimed at reducing yield stress, stopping growth, and removing tops, is done as needed throughout the season.

Principles of fruit tree formation

When choosing the method of pruning, the biological features of a particular crop, the configuration and dynamics of age changes in the crown, the nature of the mutual arrangement of branches, the probability of awakening of buds in a dormant state, the plant’s perception of the process and results of pruning are taken into account.

forming rules

Formation of fruit trees should be carried out with observance of the following rules:

  • when first forming, one-year seedlings are shortened by 6-8 buds (about 30 cm) above the trunk, so that in this place the shoots begin to branch and form the crown;
  • Yearlings with low boles are cut to the maximum, i.e. a small offshoot with two active buds is left above the grafting place.
  • Branches at a long distance from the location of the lower bough are cut off, which gives the tree a form of one-year golden rootstock;
  • The remaining powerful branches are also cut off or bent back and transferred into a semi-pruning (growth).
  • To form a skeleton, branches are used, which are pulled at an angle within 40 cents (80º (ideal is 45°…65°));
  • To create one level, take a maximum of 3 offshoots at an angle of at least 90º and form from adjacent buds.
  • The development of future skeletal branches is constantly monitored and, if necessary, aligned so that they obey the ladder, while the lateral branches should be close to the twin base.
  • Vertically growing branches are removed to avoid thickening.
  • Skeletal branches should be strong and fully covered by lateral branches (they should not be simple and weak).
  • To determine the degree of pruning, take into account the length of the annual shoot, its location, awakening of the buds and the rate of formation (since insufficient pruning does not give the expected result and too much densification);
  • When shortening the growth, immediately give the necessary direction to the continuation by correctly identifying the remaining bud.
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bushes that have been cut at the same height from the ground on the sides, give the necessary shape. In the first year, the shoots are shortened by a third or half of the height of the climbing tree, and from the second year – by ⅔ length.” width=”730″ height=”500″ />

In order to ensure sufficient light inside the crown, the number of skeletal branches of 1st and 2nd order must be strictly rationed. For each of them it is necessary to allocate a sector and maintain the established intervals between the nearby ones. It is also important to regularly dilute the crown to maintain their transparency.

Pruning technique

Before the formation of the crown of a young tree, determine the appropriate parameters of the skeleton of the tree and on the basis of these, carry out the first pruning. It is necessary not only to comply with the rules described above, but also the technique of performing the procedure itself. The following recommendations should be consulted:

  1. Cut one turn through the bud, the stubborn edge of the secateurs set on the side of the intersection, which allows you to avoid cutting plant tissues, and the cut itself is carried out under the side opposite the bud, cut into the bud, which has the same direction of growth, in which the shoot should grow.
  2. When cutting large parts, it is very important to get the direction of the cut right, as this affects the speed at which it heals. In addition, a hollow can form at the site of an illiterate cut.
  3. The largest branches are cut by 2 cans, which helps to avoid scoring on the bark.
  4. When going to the lateral branches, a competent angle is also required. If the cut is not made properly, healing also slows down. A very deep cut can lead to tissue exhaustion.
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Shaping a tree in its first years requires proper evaluation of its overall condition and each individual part. This approach will create a strong skeleton and ensure optimal development of the system in the future.

Shaping a cuttings shrub

Shrub shaping is carried out in order to give or maintain a certain shape and improve the growth of lateral shoots. In crops, blossomed shoots are cut to mid-length immediately after flowering, and those that have not blossomed are cut to mid-length in the spring.

Bushes are cut at the same height from the ground on the sides, resulting in the desired shape. In the first year, the shoots are shortened to one-third or half the height of the climbing plant, and in the second year, to ⅔ of the length.

More precise timing, frequency and technology of shrub formation depend on growth cycles and features of development. According to these features they are divided into 5 groups:

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