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Conifers, or conifers, are common as ornamental plants. Countries with a dry climate are suitable for their growth. Conifers are included in the regional Red Data Books, in the lists of rare crops with useful medicinal properties. Their cultivation is associated with the implementation of special accompanying activities, including feeding. Fertilizers for conifers are selected, depending on the characteristics of the soil and the climatic conditions of the growing region.
Features of feeding conifers
Ephedra, or ephedra, have special features that determine the main directions in care and maintenance.
Evergreen shrubs, unlike deciduous trees, do not have leaf blades. Failure to shed leaves in autumn indicates that the plant has sufficient nutrients. To care for conifers and determine what type of fertilizers they need, you should carefully study the main differences between conifers and deciduous species:
- due to the inability to shed foliage, conifers do not need additional autumn dressing to form a new crown;
- due to the inability to produce a crop, they do not need to receive material for the process of fruit formation;
- thanks to the needles, such plants get the necessary amount of nitrogen from the air.
These features greatly facilitate the care of ephedra. For feeding, a scheme is used that takes into account the basic needs of the crop. A double annual feeding is enough to ensure the plants are fully developed.
The difficulty is the selection of the type of fertilizer, since the future existence of a coniferous plant depends on the components of the composition.
There are a number of signs by which experts determine that an ephedra needs additional help. The most common reasons are non-compliance with the rules of care or the peculiarities of the climatic regime of the area.
Typical signs of a lack of nutrients for conifers:
- growth arrest (the trunk stops growing in height);
- the diameter of the tree trunk or the central trunk of a coniferous bush ceases to increase;
- more rare arrangement of branches in comparison with other representatives of this culture;
- yellowing, rushing, or blanching of the needles;
- resin release exceeding the norm;
- formed buds dry out or rot.
The bulk of the coniferous feed enters the soil during the first planting. This complex fertilizer lasts for several years. Over time, the composition of the soil is depleted and begins to need additional help.
Fertilizers for conifers in spring and autumn are the key to annual weight gain, elongation and bud formation.
Attention! An oversupply of feeding with nutrients for ephedra can cause root rot.
If deciduous trees need nitrogen, then conifers react to it differently. Nitrogen is not the main additional element for the growth of ephedra for the reason that they do not form ovaries and fruits. The fact is that nitrogen triggers the rapid growth of young shoots. For slowly growing conifers, this can cause imbalances.
Care should be taken when adding natural organic fertilizers. They can lead to burning of the root system and cause the death of plants.
The main task when choosing a top dressing for a coniferous plant is to correctly calculate the composition and not oversaturate the soil with nutrients.
Fertilizers for ephedra
Among all varieties of dressings for ephedra trees, preference is given to mineral mixtures. They can be single component or mixed. The need for introduction is determined by the appearance of the needles.
Among the variety of mineral mixtures for conifers, simple superphosphates are chosen. These are powder mixtures based on phosphorus. The element can be present in this fertilizer as phosphoric acid or as monocalcium phosphate. For ease of use, gypsum and phosphorus compounds are added to the composition.
Dolomite flour is one option. It is a powder obtained from sedimentary rock. It contains more than 90% dolomite. Dolomite flour reduces soil acidity and saturates it with calcium and magnesium. Ephedra do not like acidic soil, therefore the addition of dolomite flour often becomes a preliminary stage before the main application of the selected complex. Dolomite flour is also used for planting coniferous seedlings.
Coniferous fertilizing with organic fertilizers is designed to saturate the soil with potassium and accompanying microelements. The property of organic fertilizer to actively influence the soil can damage the conifers, therefore, among organics, only two of its varieties are suitable for them:
- Biohumus. This is a mixture that is formed as a result of the decomposition of the remains of the vital activity of soil worms. It is prepared artificially in biogas plants. The composition of vermicompost is rich in humic acids, as well as calcium, phosphorus and magnesium.
- Compost. It is a composition formed as a result of self-destruction of complex waste products of plants and animals. The maturation period for compost can last from 12 to 24 months. The term depends on the composition of the compost pit and the composting conditions.
Organic fertilizers for ephedra are not always useful. Top dressing is carried out according to a strict scheme, observing the dosage. The optimal type of dressing is considered to be mulching of the top layer.
For conifers, special compositions have been developed that take into account the characteristics of the culture, and also combine the properties of several mineral elements at the same time.
Such compositions include:
- "Health for conifers". It is used after the snow has melted, in the spring. The product contains potassium, a small amount of nitrogen. Suitable for strengthening the root system and invigorating spring growth. To feed a tree, take 15 - 20 g of the composition, dissolve it in 20 liters of liquid, watering is carried out on a cloudy day;
- "Khvoinka". It is used in the spring to aid in the stretching of branches. The drug contains more than 10% nitrogen .;
- "Universal for needles". The tool is used for planting, as well as during any growing season, if it is necessary to activate shoots;
- "Aquarin". In order to feed a coniferous plant, use 50 g of a water-soluble emulsion. "Aquarin" promotes growth and prevents fungal infections of conifers;
- Green Needle. The composition of the preparation contains an increased amount of magnesium. This element helps to strengthen the root system and the active development of young shoots. In combination with phosphorus and nitrogen, the agent is recommended to be used in the spring when the soil warms up to +8 ° C.
How to feed the conifers in spring
Spring is the beginning of the growing season, when conifers need fertilizing with minerals. At this stage, the addition of nitrogen is permissible, since during the summer period the active growth of the tree is fully justified. The main element that should be contained in spring fertilizers is phosphorus. It helps to build up green mass, promotes the development of new needles.
In the spring, loosening of the soil around the trunk is carried out: this saturates the soil with additional air, making it lighter. Together with loosening, organic matter is introduced in the spring. Matured compost is suitable for these purposes.
How to feed the conifers in the fall
In autumn, conifers do not need additional nitrogen supply, like deciduous crops. They need potassium: during the winter period, it will contribute to the development of the root system.
Conifers are fed 2 times: in spring and autumn. The rest of the dressing is made in case of urgent need.
All types of fertilizers are divided into dry and liquid. In order not to destroy the trees, they adhere to the basic rules of feeding.
- Granular and powder dressings are distributed over the moistened soil in the area covered by the crown of a tree or shrub, then the soil is loosened. Thus, the granules are mixed with the topsoil. Gradually, with rainwater and moisture from irrigation, the granules go down to the root system, at the same time stabilizing the acidity level of the soil.
- Liquid mixtures. Coniferous solutions should be less concentrated than deciduous crops. In order to feed the plants with liquid formulations, furrows are prepared at a distance of 8 - 10 cm from the trunk, poured with a solution, then covered with soil and leveled.
- Compost or vermicompost is applied together with the topsoil after loosening. Organic fertilizers are considered one of the hardest for any crop. For conifers, they are recommended to be divided into two equal receptions.
Mulching is considered one of the additional ways of feeding. The top layer of soil is covered with selected materials, while an unprotected strip about 5 - 8 cm thick is left around the trunk.
Fertilizers for conifers play the role of an accompanying element in the care. The development and growth of coniferous culture depends on the choice of a complex of dressings. At the same time, the peculiarities of evergreen trees should be taken into account, avoiding their oversaturation with nutrients.