Walking in the park or relaxing in the park, going on a picnic in the forest or going hiking in the mountains, we often notice a magnificent variety of conifers. They delight us with evergreen shades, an unforgettable fresh and specific aroma and the ability to create a truly pleasant and cozy atmosphere around them. Today we want to introduce you to a representative of this family - fir, as well as methods of growing and caring for the plant.
Fir is a plant from the genus of coniferous evergreens, the Pine family. It is often found in the temperate zones of the Northern Hemisphere, where it decorates mountains and forests with its interesting shapes, a variety of shades and the beauty of ripe fruits. This is a powerful monoecious, evergreen tree with strong branching and covering of nets. Covered with gray bark, hard and with cracks or even smooth (depending on the type), the root system is pivotal, powerful enough, which makes it possible to go to great depths. The needles are soft and flat, located on each shoot spirally, sometimes distributed and comb.
Types of Fir
This genus has more than 50 independent species, which are most often found in the northern hemisphere of our planet (temperate zone). Below we give examples of some species and cultivars that are now known:
- balsam fir, Nordman;
- whole-leafed, Caucasian;
- one-color, ordinary;
- mountain, white, Nana fir;
- subalpine, Sakhalin;
- Korean, Siberian
- compact fir, dwarf fir.
According to breeders, these species and their forms are suitable for cultivation in our climate, which means that they can be located in any suburban area. Before buying, carefully study the conditions for planting the plant at the point of sale.
How to plant and care for fir
It is best to grow a tree in partial shade. The plant itself is quite shade-tolerant and normally feels without the sun, but it requires partial shade in the first few years of life. It can grow in the sun, but this is fraught with some diseases and weakness of fir in the future. The plant is not afraid of the wind, so a single landing is possible, although in small groups it looks much more interesting.
The soil should be rich and fertile, sufficiently moist, but without stagnation of waterpreferably well-drained.
Planting a plant
Planting can occur in a variety of ways, but a uniform distance between plants must be maintained, which will give them a certain freedom, and the perception of the integrity of the planting at the moment when the firs grow. In alley plantings, the distance requirement is 4-5 meters, in dense groups - up to 2.5 m, in loose groups - about 3 m. You can plant trees in spring and autumn (April or early September). In order for the fir to grow strong and beautiful, you need to buy a seedling at the age of 5-10 years (wildlife shops, special nurseries, online sales, and so on), that is, it must be strong and ready for transplanting.
The conifer should be planted to a depth of about 60-70 cm, the size of the pit is 60x60 cm. Make sure that the root neck remains at ground level. Also choose the right soil for planting. The most suitable composition will be sand, peat, sheet land and clay (1: 1: 3: 2). On heavy soils, drainage is mandatory, it will be enough 20 cm of broken brick or gravel at the bottom of the landing pit. Fertilizer is also needed during planting - full mineral fertilizer (200-300g) and about 10 kg of sawdust.
Fir trees do not belong to “gentle” cultures at all, but you cannot name them the simplest. For these conifers it is very important to constantly stay in one place, without various manipulations with pruning, cutting and transplanting. It is advisable to plant a plant in an area with moist air and soil, but always without stagnation of water. A few years after planting the seedling, make "Kemira". This should be done in the spring, at the rate of 120-150 g per plant. It is not necessary to water the fir, often standard precipitation is enough for it, especially since the plant does not tolerate waterlogged soil. But it is necessary to cultivate the soil around the plant, remove weeds, loosen the soil by 20-30 cm, mulch trunks circles with peat, wood chips or sawdust, pouring a layer of 6-7 cm.Every spring, try to remove excess branches from the plant (dry, debris). It is not advisable to form a crown, but if it is absolutely necessary, the process should take place in early spring, before the period of sap flow.
Propagation is possible by seeds, which should be harvested at the very beginning of the ripening of cones. Sowing - in the fall, or in the spring (in this case, stratification of 30-40 days is mandatory). You can propagate fir and with the help of annual cuttings with apical kidney. This seedling will grow extremely slowly, and only after 8-10 years growth will accelerate, and you will see the result of your work.
Should I plant fir in the garden?
Fir is considered an aristocratic plant in the garden, quite demanding, but very attractive. The use of conifers (due to their large size) is possible only in parks, squares and areas with a large area. It is possible to land on the site and decorative, compact cultivars, in this case, the correctness of agricultural technology is required. Most of all the price for summer residents and landscape designers is dwarf and undersized varieties with an abundance of blue needles and cones. The formalities and splendor of such species give slender forms and reflections of bright greenery.
Fir is used in landscape gardening, but it is very affected in large cities from air pollution. The plant looks great in alley and group plantings in combination with maples, white-birch birches and a variety of shrubs. It is also possible to combine with other plants.
Due to the strong needles, fir branches are often used in floristry, however, do not use the density of fir for covering plants or warming. The needles are so thick that they do not let air through and limit the penetration of light, which means that it can only do harm.
Fir is the next plant we described, which, in addition to excellent external data, also has a considerable amount of useful properties. Essential fir oil is considered deodorizing, antiseptic, regenerating and tonic. It is widely used in medicine and cosmetology. Researchers have proven that the product restores skin elasticity, eliminates age-related and painful sagging, improves the quality of appearance. Also, the use of fir oil is effective for pneumonia, flu, tonsillitis and influenza, with nervous exhaustion, inhibition of vital activity.
Here are some examples of the use of the drug and recommended dosages:
- Aroma lamps - up to 5 drops of oil per 15 m ”of the area of the room in which it is necessary to change the aroma;
- Aroma combing to strengthen hair and improve their quality. Fir extract or oil is simply applied to the comb teeth;
- Inhalation. 1-2 drops of oil are added to the hot water tank, the vapors are inhaled for 3-5 minutes, closing your eyes, covered with a towel or blanket over the tank;
- Refreshing effect. 15 drops of oil are mixed with ordinary vodka (50 ml). A clean napkin is dipped into this mixture, with which you can wipe the entire body or only areas of increased sweating;
- Lotions. Mix 15 drops of oil and about 30-40 ml of clean, boiled water. Further, a napkin or tampon is dipped into this mixture, which is then wrung out and applied to places of suppuration or inflammation.
The use of fir oil, extract, extracts is possible in different cases, but fir treatment or aromatherapy is not suitable for everyone, therefore you should definitely know the contraindications: first, be sure to read the instructions for use of the drug you purchased and determine if you are not part of an individual intolerance group. Also, do not let the oil get into your eyes, and best of all, consult a specialist before use.
You can buy essential oil, extract, fir needles for self-preparation of various products in pharmacies, special salons or just collect from your own tree planted on the site, this is not a problem at all. The only thing is to listen to our recent advice - be sure to make sure that this is exactly what you need before using it.
So, today we learned how to grow fir, how to create the right conditions for full growth and where to buy material for planting, as well as many other things, such as plant properties, description of appearance, application and so on. Now it remains only to choose a seedling, the price of which does not scare you at all, and transfer it to a suitable corner of the territory of your site. Soon you will be able to enjoy a beautiful coniferous plant.
We also advise you to refer to the following materials on our site, which describe in detail the diseases of conifers. They will help in time to identify damage and help the plant.