The mountain pine Pug is an ornamental plant created specifically for decorating land plots. Unusual shape, unpretentious care, pleasant aroma are perfectly combined in a small shrub. There are certain requirements for soil and maintenance, considering which everyone can use Pug pine for landscaping.
Description of mountain pine Pug
Outwardly, the plant resembles a slightly flattened ball. Its distinctive feature is that the tree grows almost equally in width and height. It lends itself well to pruning and shaping. A dwarf shrub of the Pug subspecies grows slowly - within a year the size of the pine increases by only 2 - 4 cm. Its main advantages:
- resistance to frost, winds;
- does not require a lot of moisture;
- well tolerates gassed air;
- has low requirements for soil, conditions, care.
The full Latin name is Pinus mugo Mops. The plant grows to a height of 1.5 meters, including small shoots. The color of the needles is different - from green with blue to deep emerald. The needles are replaced every 3-5 years.
The cones of the Pug variety are brown, shaped like an egg, 2 to 7 cm long. The buds are resinous and grow densely. The roots of the mountain bush form a large ramified network closer to the soil surface. Thanks to this, the Pug pine keeps well on inclined surfaces, alpine slides.
Planting and caring for a mountain pine Pug
Choosing the right landing site is a highlight. The site must be well lit. In the shade, the mountain bush grows slowly, the color of the needles is dull, barely green. In such conditions, the likelihood of disease is high.
The soil for Pug pine should be light, good for air and moisture. Acidity can be any, although a slightly acidic environment is better tolerated by the plant. If the soil on the site is heavy, dense, it is required to create an additional drainage layer - a mixture of small stones and sand is poured over the soil (with a layer thickness of at least 20 cm).
Pug pine tolerates gassed air well, therefore it is often used for urban landscape design. The shrub easily adapts to temperature extremes, snow, heat, heavy rain and wind. In hot dry weather, additional watering is required. Such unpretentiousness allows you to grow a plant in central Russia, Moscow, Moscow region.
Seedling and planting plot preparation
The optimal time for planting young mountain bushes is the second half of spring and early autumn. In order for the Pug pine seedlings to take root in the new soil and temperature conditions, they must be prepared in advance.
You can buy ready-made seedlings in ordinary stores or specialized receivers. The second option is better - in such places, the conditions of keeping and growing, as a rule, are close to ideal. Mountain varieties from nurseries are less sick and grow stronger and more resilient.
Before buying, choose one of the possible root systems:
- open - the plant is either placed in a temporary area of the store, or the roots are covered with a film;
- closed - each shrub is grown in a separate pot.
A plant from a pot tolerates planting to a new place better, takes root and adapts faster. Young trees are chosen - the age of the seedling should be less than five years. They carefully examine the roots, needles - they should not have rot, damage.
Attention! You need to buy a mountain plant in the containers in which it grew. This can be understood as follows: the roots entangle the pot, "look out" at the edges. A transplanted bush may not tolerate a new planting.
The mountain pine Pug must be planted following a specific pattern. The plant needs the right soil, the procedure is strictly defined:
- dig a hole, the width of which is 10 - 12 cm more than the root ball of the seedling, the depth is from 0.7 to 1 m;
- a drainage mixture (gravel, sand, ground brick) is laid on the bottom, the layer height is 20 cm;
- then the prepared soil is poured, which includes turf, sand or clay in a ratio of 2: 1, respectively; it is permissible to use ready-made mixtures;
- a Pug pine seedling is placed in a pit, while the root system cannot be destroyed;
- sprinkle with soil mixture, tamp;
- the last stage is watering: there should be more water than usual.
Additionally, fertilizers are added: prepared manure, compost, nitrogen or complex fertilizers. The distance between the bushes ranges from 1.5 to 4 meters.
Attention! The first 4 - 5 days a young plant needs to be shaded (spruce branches, spunbond). Pug shrubs up to 5 years old tolerate planting in a new place, but direct sunlight can harm them.
Watering and feeding
The first month is the most difficult for a seedling. Water it carefully, along the perimeter of the pit, once every 3-4 days (depending on the weather, general climate). Water must not be poured near the tree.
It is imperative to feed the mountain bush. Use one of the formulations recommended by gardeners:
- nitrogen (for example, 40 g of Nitroammophoska); applied during planting together with the main soil;
- mineral wagon or special (for example, Kemira - 30 - 40 g); add the drug to the circle near the pine trunk for the first two years.
After two years, the Pug pine no longer needs feeding. For normal development and growth, there is enough nutrition from the plant litter.
Mulching and loosening
Adult mountain shrubs do not require additional procedures. The soil near only transplanted plants needs to be loosened and mulched.
Mulching - covering the soil around the trunk with various materials to protect the roots, improve the properties of the soil. Peat is used for mountain pine Pug. A layer of 5 - 6 cm is poured. Over time, the peat mixes with the lower layers and enriches the soil as a whole.
Frequent loosening around the Pug pine is not recommended. The soil is loosened around the perimeter of the planting pit when weeds are removed.
The mountain pine Pug initially has a regular spherical shape. Cropping is practically unnecessary. If necessary, remove young branches (shoots), pinch off or cut off no more than a third of the crown volume. The procedure helps to slow down the overall growth of mountain shrubs, and to make the crown of the Pug variety more dense and heap. In the spring, dried, dead branches are cut off.
Preparing for winter
The adult mountain pine Pug is frost-resistant and reacts well to low temperatures, snow, and wind. Two years after transplanting, you do not need to cover the plant. Young shrubs of the Pug variety are covered with spruce branches. It is especially important to insulate a mountain pine transplanted in the fall.
The plant is opened in spring, after a stable above-zero temperature has been established. It is recommended to additionally water the mountain pine Pug with warm melt water - this way the shrub "wakes up" faster and starts vegetative processes.
There are three breeding options: grafting, seeds, cuttings. Growing from seeds is a simple method that allows you to preserve the decorativeness of the mountain pine Pug, its health and endurance. Planting is carried out in separate containers or directly on open ground (in this case, more sprouts will sprout). They are planted in the spring, after stratification.
Cutting is considered the least suitable and most time consuming method. Cuttings are taken from young annual plants with a "heel" (part of the bark). Then placed in water with a solution to accelerate root growth for 12 hours, then transferred to plain water for three days. Additionally, the soil is prepared - peat, sand and earth are mixed in equal proportions. When planting, the lower part is treated with Epin or Zircon. Rooting occurs six months later (for autumn plantings - after a year).
Propagating the mountain pine Pug through grafting is an even more laborious process. Four year old shrubs are used. The grafted plant fully adopts the properties of the mother bush. It is quite difficult to carry out the grafting of pine on your own, the method is rarely used. The breeding process is described in detail in the video:
Diseases and pests
The mountain pine Pug is resistant to most types of diseases or harmful insects. Often the cause is contaminated soil or vectors (birds, small animals). The weather and improper care have a negative impact on development.
In spring, when the plant is weakened, the shute fungus can develop, and the needles of the plant turn dark brown with black blotches. The branches dry up, a white bloom appears (more like a small cobweb). The cause of infection can be a lack of moisture, excessive planting density. Due to the fungus, needles fall off, the shrub loses its shape and decorative appeal.
Solutions containing copper will help to stop the development of the fungus. Mountain pine is treated completely, after removing all damaged branches (they need to be burned). For prevention, the plant is sprayed with sulfur, rogor.
Scleroderriosis is a common disease of coniferous mountain trees. First, the buds dry out, then the whole branch. The infected part of the mountain pine Pug is removed; additional processing is not required.
Rust fungus (seryanka) manifests itself with a red bloom on the needles. Affected bush branches are cut and burned.
The main crop pests are some butterflies and aphids. For the prevention and elimination of harmful insects, drugs with a chemical or biological composition (for example, Lepidocide) are used. Proper care, timely feeding and monitoring are the best ways to protect against pests and diseases.
Mountain pine Pug is an unpretentious ornamental plant. Frost resistance and endurance make it possible to plant it in different climatic conditions. A pleasant spherical shape of the shrub will fit into any style, suitable for decorating a garden, reservoirs. It is better to propagate mountain pine through seeds. The main thing is time and patience.