Sakura, or Japanese cherry, (Prunus serrulata) is an ancient symbol of Japan and a plant characterized by amazing splendor and elegance of flowering. In fact, several East Asian tree species are hidden under the name "sakura", but they all have pink double flowers. Japanese cherry can reach a height of 25 m, the leaves are large, flowering occurs from March to June.
The meaning of cherry blossoms for Hanami
In late March - early April, every year the Japanese celebrate sakura blossom. Celebrate this day in the family circle, in nature or in the park. In Japan, cherry blossoms everywhere - near rivers, in the mountains, in a park. The holiday of its flowering is called Hanami and is a day off for all Japanese.
In the media, before the sakura blooms, it is highlighted on which day the holiday will be and where it will be most convenient to watch it. The process lasts from a couple of hours to several days. Hanami is very popular in the country, and some Japanese people travel to cities to catch cherry blossoms several times.
How Japanese cherry differs from others
Japanese cherry grows quickly and is able to reach significant heights. The width of its crown reaches about 10 m. Sakura differs from ordinary cherries in some biological characteristics and growing requirements.
Growing requirements and importance of sakura
Japanese cherry blossoms occur in early spring. A tree is not able to tolerate low temperatures - a temperature value below 15 degrees is deadly for sakura. The tree should be planted only on humus soils and in well-lit areas.
The main purpose of Japanese cherry is to decorate the site.
Differences of sakura from ordinary cherry
The main difference between sakura and ordinary cherry is that Japanese cherry does not produce fruit. Sakura - ornamental plant, cherry - fruit. Japanese cherries also have fruits, but they are sour, small and not so tasty. The berries of ordinary cherries are tasty and are actively used for use in food.
Eating Sakura Fruits
Despite the peculiar taste of sakura fruits, they are used as food by residents of Japan. The fruit of the Japanese cherry is called sakumbo, and its color may be pink or red. Different plant varieties have different tastes.
Sakura also uses leaves for food. They are pickled or salted like tomatoes. Sweets are wrapped in Japanese cherry leaves. The taste of leaves is sour, spicy or salty-sweet. Another way to use them is to supplement rice. Sakura fruits can be used to make jam and wine.
The main varieties of sakura
Modern sakura varieties are created by crossing it with cherries (Cerasus yedoensis), (C. Lannesiana) and (C. Incisa). The most famous varieties are:
- "Shirotae". The tree reaches a height of 4.5 m, the flowers are white, non-double. The variety is actively used in England and Japan. The birthplace of cherries is England.
- "Hally Tolivett". Frost-resistant variety with a crown in the shape of a ball. The flowers are 4-centimeter, pink in color, the diameter of the inflorescences is 8 cm. The tree is propagated by green cuttings.
- "Kwanzan". One of the most famous varieties. The flower contains 30 petals, the color is purple. Of the minuses - the tree does not differ in longevity.
- "Kikushidare-zakura". The tree reaches a height of 5 m. The flowers are terry, pink, in diameter reach 6 cm. Of the minuses - the cherry is not able to withstand severe frosts.
- "Amonogawa". The height of the tree reaches 8 m, the width is only 1.25 m. The flowers are numerous, pink, fragrant.
How to plant sakura in the country
Sakura planting is often done by seed, which must be carefully prepared - dried and washed. Landing is carried out in the summer, but can be made in the spring or in the fall. If you decide to purchase a seedling, you should choose a healthy planting material. Its landing takes place in April. The best arrangement of seedlings is 2x3 or 3x3 meters.
Planting sakura is recommended on the slope. It is important that the place is lit, but the lighting is moderate, so that the tree does not receive sunburn. Soil acidity should be neutral, the best option is loamy soil.
With proper care, sakura perfectly survives in Russia. Moreover, its flowering occurs in April-May. Only those varieties of wood that grow on the northern island of Japan can be planted in Russia.
Features of watering
Sakura requires not only watering, but also periodic spraying of leaves. Particular attention should be paid to watering in the hot summer. During the first three years after planting, while the root system has not yet fully matured, watering is carried out once a week. If it rains, moisture is not required.
Japanese cherry will not bear fruit if it lacks nutrients. The tree requires the introduction of organic matter, nitrogen and potassium. On m2 the following amount of mineral substances is introduced:
- the average availability of soil nutrients - minerals 8 g, organics - 5 kg;
- poor soils - minerals - 16 g, organic - 9 kg.
Shaping and trimming
Sakura pruning is done to prevent thickening. It is produced in the spring until the juice has gone. Dry and excess branches are removed, and after the work, the places of cuts are processed by garden var.
Trimming work must be done carefully so that the gum does not start to stand out. To exclude the appearance of a sticky substance, the plant needs good drainage and proper watering.
You may also be interested in an article in which we talk about how to grow decorative almonds on your site.
Tree protection against pest diseases
If you do not protect the cherry from pests, the flowers will be spoiled, and the plant itself will develop slowly. In some cases, sakura branches begin to delaminate. To prevent this, growths on the branches should be removed, and the cut points treated with healing preparations.
Sometimes cherries suffer from drying leaves. This is a fungus that can be eliminated by a mixture of sulfur and coal. A pest can also provoke the appearance of a fungus, for example, a ringed silkworm (Malacosoma neustria). To fight the pest will be by removing the branches on which he laid his eggs. It will be necessary to collect and caterpillars, as well as use insecticides.
Sakura in the country: landing
Sakura is one of the most beautifully flowering trees on the planet. To grow a graceful plant will have to try pretty hard, but the result is worth it. Nowadays, everyone, and not just the residents of the country of the Rising Sun, have the opportunity to enjoy sakura blossoms on their site.