Thuja Columna is a beautiful evergreen tree, which is ideal for decorating a site, a park, and is widely used in landscape design. Despite the fact that the thuja of this variety is quite unpretentious, proper care will help her stay healthy for a long time.
Description of thuja Columna
Western thuja Columna (occidentalis Columna) is an evergreen tree of the Cypress family. Despite the fact that the homeland of this culture is North America, it has gained popularity all over the world. It can be found in suburban areas, in city parks, squares. And all thanks to the endurance and decorativeness of this variety.
Thuja Columna is characterized by a columnar crown, the needles are thick and shiny, have a rich green tint. In winter, the color of the foliage turns brown, but turns green with the onset of the first warmth. Thuja Columna's needles sit on short, cylinder-shaped branches, they extend parallel from the ground and fit snugly against the wood. The bark of thuja Columna has a brownish-red hue.
Thuja of this variety grows up to 10 m in height, is considered a long-liver - with proper care, it lives on average about 200 years.
The growth rate of thuja Columna averages up to 30 cm per year. Thus, literally in 10 years, the height will be about 3 m.
Among the advantages of this variety:
- high growth rate;
- preservation of decorative qualities even in the absence of a haircut;
- undemanding care;
- thuja Columna is a long-liver;
- an ideal variety for creating a hedge;
- high frost resistance.
The use of thuja Columna in landscape design
Columna's evergreen thujas are an integral part of landscape design. Thanks to their excellent appearance, they can be combined with other plants, and with proper care, Columna will delight with her appearance for many years.
Thuja Columna hedge
Thuja is most often used to create a beautiful hedge. Such a green fence has the following advantages:
- beautiful appearance even without cropping;
- the ability to give the hedge an original shape.
Such a natural fence will purify the air, protect the site from the views of uninvited guests, hold back dust, and reduce noise.
Another important advantage is that thuja Columna will fit into any landscape compositions: they can be planted next to shrubs, flowers, and other conifers.
To reproduce this type of thuja, you can use 2 methods:
- planting with seeds.
Important! The second method is considered more complicated, requires skills - it is usually used by professional gardeners who grow thuja for sale. On average, it may take 3-6 years to grow a Columna thuja seedling.
To get the seeds of thuja Columna, a ripe cone is needed, it is placed in a warm place where the scales open. After that, it is placed in water for several days, then planted in a pot with earth. Despite the fact that it takes a long time to grow a seedling, the specimens obtained in this way will be very hardy.
The method of propagation by cuttings of thuja Columna also has its advantages:
- the thuja of Columna grown in this way retain all the characteristics of the mother tree;
- the ability to get a tree ready for planting 2-3 times faster than when propagating by seeds.
- Apical shoots are cut from the mother tree of the Columna thuja; it is best to choose adult specimens for this at the age of 5-9 years.
- The branch is broken off - it is not recommended to use a pruner for this. At the end of the shoot, there should be a "heel" from the bark. The optimal length is about 15 cm.
- The lower part of the cutting is cleaned of needles by about 2-3 cm. On contact with the ground, they can cause festering. If the bark peels off, it is also removed, and the tip of the shoot is pinched. Cuttings can be harvested at any time of the year.
Thuja Columna seedlings are also sold in stores. There is no need to buy specimens with creases, other damage, the root system must be powerful, without signs of rot. And it is better to give preference to a tree with a small clod of earth, in which case it will take root better.
Important! Among the main disadvantages of this method of reproduction of thuja Columna is called the fact that only 30% of the cuttings obtained take root.
Planting and caring for thuja Columna
It is not difficult to plant and care for thuja of the Columna variety, the main thing is to adhere to all agrotechnical rules and follow the correct algorithm.
It is recommended to carry out work in the spring, in this case the trees will have time to get stronger and will not die over the winter.
Site selection and soil preparation
When choosing a place for planting thuja Columna, it is better to give preference to either a sunny place or partial shade. If the thuja grows in constant shade, it will quickly wither away. Areas with a draft will not work either.
Attention! Adult thuja Columna have a great height, they are voluminous, therefore they should be planted at least 3 m from any other plantings so as not to shade them.
The type of soil is not so important, but the tree grows better in fertile alkaline soil. But the level of air permeability of the soil is very important: if clay soils prevail on the site, it is required to use high-quality drainage, otherwise the roots will begin to rot during watering.
- Dig a planting hole, the dimensions depend on the root system of the Columna thuja. The minimum depth is 60 cm, the width is about 80-100 cm.
- A drainage layer of expanded clay, fine gravel with a layer of about 10 cm is laid on the bottom. A layer of sand, earth and peat is laid on top in a ratio of 1: 2: 1.
- The seedling is fed during the spring planting. For each tree, 500 g of nitroammophoska are used.
- Place the seedling in the hole so that the root collar is at ground level. Planting too deep or pulling the root collar too high will cause the seedling to dry out quickly.
Growing and care rules
Thuja Columna does not require careful maintenance - according to the descriptions of gardeners, this culture is unpretentious. But in order for the tree to look neat and attractive, it should be properly watered, fed, protected from pests.
After planting, the seedlings need to be watered once a week in order for the root system to take root and grow normally. For each thuja - 10-12 liters of water, but if the weather is too hot and dry, you can increase it to 20 liters.
Some gardeners recommend sprinkling to make up for the lack of moisture. Also, with the help of sprinkling, you can "clean" the thuja by washing off the dust. It is enough to carry out this procedure once every 1-2 weeks.
After watering, it is recommended to weed the trunk circle. The soil is loosened to a depth of about 5-8 cm. And in order for moisture to stay in the soil longer, it is necessary to mulch the soil around the seedling.
If fertilizers were used during planting, there is no need to feed the thuja over the next year. And for the next spring, it is recommended to apply about 100 g of complex fertilizers per square meter.
To make the thuja look beautiful, in the fall it is necessary to carry out formative pruning: the seedlings are cut in a circle by about 30% of the crown height. In the spring, sanitary work is carried out: old and frost-damaged branches are removed.
Preparing for winter
Tui are highly frost-resistant and can withstand the coldest winters. Adult trees over 3 years old do not require any shelter, but if the winter is too cold, you can mulch the soil around using peat, straw, compost.
Young seedlings up to a year can be closed from the wind with a large plastic container - it is better to choose a 5-liter bottle. From one to three years old, trees are wrapped in spunbond or thick paper.
Pests and diseases
Among the insects that most often infect thuja, aphids are isolated. This is a small pest that actively eats the lower part of the tree. The main symptom of its appearance is yellowed and crumbling needles.
The most effective method is processing with Korbofos.
Another pest of the columnar thuja of Columna is a false shield. This is a dangerous insect that can quickly destroy plantings. As a prophylactic agent, the tree should be treated with Actellik, the composition is applied before the buds bloom. To destroy the pest, agents such as Rogor and Antio are used.
Of the diseases of thuja Columna, rot usually affects: in this case, the branches first turn yellow, then become darker, die off. To overcome the disease, it is necessary to spray the plantings 1-2 times a week until the thuja recovers.
Phytophthora thuja Columna is a dangerous fungal disease. Most often appears on trees that grow in too moist soil. As a preventive measure, it should be treated with fungicides.
Important! If late blight nevertheless struck a tree, it is recommended to destroy it, and replace the soil, since the fungus can live there for a long time.
Thuja Columna, due to its unpretentiousness, beautiful appearance, easy care, is becoming one of the most popular trees for decorating a suburban area. But in order to avoid the appearance of diseases, pests that most often attack thuja, it needs to be provided with proper care.
Olga, 51 years old, Perm
My husband and I have been looking for a long time how to decorate the site beautifully, taking into account the fact that we cannot spend a lot of time taking care of it. We bought 5 Kolumna saplings, planted 5 years ago. They have taken root well, have grown, already at a height of more than 1.5 m. Of the advantages, I can note good survival rate and minimum care. Among the disadvantages is the need for trimming, otherwise the form is lost.
Andrey, 45 years old, Moscow
Friends sent a detailed description and photo of the thuja of western Columna, suggested that the plants are unpretentious, grow well without pruning, it is only important to water and feed occasionally. We bought 10 seedlings, but only 5 took root, as I was told, this is due to the fact that plants obtained by cuttings take root worse than those grown from seeds.
Irina, 33 years old, Oryol
According to the reviews of friends, I decided to land thuja Kolomna on the site. But for some reason, the seedlings that I purchased did not take root at all: the needles quickly turned yellow, then fell off.