Barberry Thunberg Cobalt is a decorative shrub of small, almost dwarf growth, used for landscaping the lower tier. It is used to create low hedges, borders and flower beds. The main feature of the barberry Thunberg Cobalt is the high density and spreading of the bush.
Description of Barberry Cobalt
Barberry Thunberg Cobalt was bred in the middle of the last century in Holland. This ornamental plant is quite compact in size, reaching a height of no more than 50 cm. In rare cases, its height reaches great values, however, one of its main characteristics, bush density, is lost, and Thunberg barberry Cobalt becomes less decorative.
Grow a barberry Thunberg Cobalt exclusively as a dense plant with emerald green foliage. It is used as a curb. In some cases, the barberry Tunberg Cobalt can be used as standing alone. Often, this technique is used in the design of low beds or rock gardens.
The shoots of barberry Cobalt have a small length, they are densely dotted with leaves and small spikes. Cobalt leaves cling to shoots and are located on them oppositely. The length of the leaves can reach up to 2 cm, they are elongated and slightly pointed at the end. As they grow, this sharpening gradually becomes rounded.
The flowering of barberry Thunberg Cobalt begins in mid-May and lasts about two weeks. The flowers have the form of bells pale yellow or lemon color. Their number is large enough: there can be up to 2-3 dozen flowers on one shoot.
Like most members of the Barberry family, Cobalt can change the color of the foliage, depending on the season. From early spring to mid-autumn, leaf color has an emerald hue that changes with the onset of cold weather on orange-yellow. Additional decorative elements in the autumn months are given to the berries of bright red color in the barberry of Thunberg. Cobalt. The fruit of the barberry Thunberg Cobalt is also a lot, because almost all the flowers are tied.
With the arrival of the first frost, the green leaves, which did not have time to change color to orange, fall off. The photo of barberry cobalt is presented below:
Barberry of Thunberg Cobalt has a low growth rate and practically does not need formative pruning, but it tolerates it perfectly, and its crown can be formed at will of the owner.
Barberry Thunberg refers to winter-hardy and cold-resistant plants.
Planting and caring for the barberry Thunberg Cobalt
Caring for the Barberry Thunberg Cobalt is simple and does not require any complex skills or abilities. Even inexperienced flower growers can grow this ornamental shrub.
The most important thing in its cultivation is to prevent excessive thickening. However, frequent pruning is also undesirable for the plant. Given the low growth rate of the barberry, the crown formation of the plant every 1-2 seasons will be optimal.
Preparation of seedlings and planting area
Despite the fact that the barberry Thunberg Cobalt unpretentious, it would be best to be on a sunny stretch. Cultivation is allowed in the penumbra, but the shadow is highly undesirable, in it the growth rate of the shrub will be almost zero.
In addition, only in sunny areas will there be a change in the color of the leaves for the autumn season. A plant in the penumbra is likely to have orange foliage in autumn only around the perimeter of the leaves.
The barberry is undemanding to the soil: its fertility or hardness is not important to it. For a more rapid adaptation of a young plant, preference should be given to light soils with a medium or low degree of moisture.Important! Barberry Thunberg Cobalt does not like too wet areas. Its root system tolerates drought much better than strong moisture.
Preliminary preparation of the site for planting involves digging holes about 40 cm deep and no more than 50 cm in diameter. Soil consisting of the following components should be laid on the bottom of the pit:
- garden land - 2 parts;
- humus or compost - 1 part;
- sand - 1 part.
The height of the nutrient soil should be from 1/3 to half the depth of the fossa.
Acidic soils are recommended to lime with ash or lime (in the amount of 200 g or 300 g under one bush, respectively).
Any preliminary preparation of saplings before landing is not required.
Landing should be carried out either in early autumn or late spring. It is desirable that there are no leaves on the seedlings, but there are at least 3-4 vegetative buds on each of the shoots.
Planting plants carried out in such a way that the distance between the bushes ranged from 50 to 80 cm. It is desirable to add complex fertilizer for ornamental plants consisting of potassium, nitrogen and phosphorus to the wells on poor soils.
The sapling has a sufficiently developed root system, which must be carefully laid on a layer of fertile soil that was previously deposited in the hole, straightened root layers and gently sprinkle with garden soil.
Then carry out a light compaction of the soil and watering.
Watering and feeding
Watering is done as the soil dries. It should not be too often "fill" the plant - just one abundant watering for 1-2 weeks.
The first dressing is done in the second year after planting the barberry Thunberg Cobalt. In the spring, nitrogen fertilizer is applied, consisting of 20 g of urea dissolved in 10 liters of water per bush. At the end of the season they make mulching of the bush with peat. Further, this procedure is repeated annually. No other dressing barberry is required.
The main pruning that the plant needs is sanitary, carried out after wintering. In this case, the standard clean patients, old and dried shoots, as well as shoots growing "inside the bush."
Formative pruning is relevant only for plants that play the role of hedges. They are usually sheared 2 times per season (beginning and end of summer). In other cases, formative pruning is performed no more often than 1 time in 2 years.
Preparing for the winter
Plants older than 3 years do not need to be prepared for winter, as they are able to withstand frosts up to -35 ° C without shelter. Young plants should be wrapped with polyethylene for the winter and sprinkled with a layer of foliage 20-30 cm high. And as soon as the first snow goes, sprinkle with snow on top.
However, in spring, in order to avoid plant suspending, it is better to remove this “thermal protection” at the first thaw.
Barberry grows in standard ways:
- division of the bush;
- using cuttings;
Unlike most perennials, Thunberg barberry Cobalt very poorly tolerate reproduction by dividing the bush. Any damage to the rhizome that “goes wrong” will be fatal to the plant. Therefore, you should try to divide the rhizome by the thinnest roots, without touching the main root process.
Ways of division by layering or cuttings are more preferable. On average, in the 5th year of life, barberries appear from 2 to 5 layers, which are perfectly transplanted to a new place and begin to bloom after 1-2 seasons.
The cuttings are made from sprung shoots and grown according to standard methods using very liquid soil. At the same time, it is desirable to treat them with the help of a root formation stimulator, for example, epin.
Growing seeds is also not a problem, because the seeds have very good germination. The main thing is that they are stratified. It is made as follows: seeds collected in the fall are stored until the beginning of April in a refrigerator at a temperature of not more than + 5 ° C. After which they are planted without any additional treatment in a greenhouse or on open ground.
Diseases and pests
The plant has a high resistance to many diseases characteristic of ornamental plants, however, there are several types of diseases and pests that can cause serious damage to the barberry of Thunberg Cobalt.
Powdery mildew is the strongest threat of the disease. This fungal disease on the barberry behaves exactly as it does on any other plant: the symptoms manifest themselves in the form of powdery plaque, first on the lower part of the leaves, then on their entire surface, shoots and flowers.
The fight against powdery mildew is carried out with the help of a sulfur-lime mixture and a solution of colloidal sulfur. In this case, spraying of the affected plants should be done entirely in 2 days on the third for 20 days until the complete disappearance of the symptoms of the disease. In this case, as soon as the powdery mildew is found, the damaged shoots must be cut to the very root and burned.
The main pest of barberry Cobalt is a highly specialized parasite - barberry aphid. Her behavior is standard for all representatives of aphids: sucking on the leaves and shoots, small insects suck up the sap of the plant, from which it begins to dry. It is quite problematic to detect barberry aphids, since it is extremely small in size.
In case of aphid detection, you should either spray the affected plants with a solution of laundry soap (30 g of soap per 1 l of water), or use a tobacco solution - 50 g of shag per 1 l of water. Spraying is carried out daily until the complete disappearance of pests.
Another unpleasant pest that can infect a barberry is the flower moth. To control it, insecticides are used (for example, Chlorofos or Decis).
Barberry Thunberg Cobalt, due to its decorative properties, is widely used in the design of gardens, gardens, parks and flower beds. It is an ideal plant for filling the lower tier in any landscape design. Growing barberry Cobalt is quite simple and can be recommended even for novice gardeners.