Among ornamental garden shrubs, a special place is occupied by weigela - a flowering plant that under certain conditions can bloom twice a season. Who will refuse such pleasure?
However, weigel is not only attractive for its beautiful, abundant and remontant flowering: in some varieties of this shrub, the leaves are painted in a bright emerald shade, and in some they are variegated. True, variegated weigels are much more capricious in leaving than shrubs with green foliage, but such beauty has the right to demand some victims.
To grow this beautiful fragrant bush on your site, you need to know some of the subtleties that we are ready to share with you in our article.
Vegetable Growing Video
Meet the Weigela
Weigel bush has blossomed in my garden. I was looking forward to this flowering, and now I am ready to show you the flowering shrub and tell you about it. The plant is named after the German botanist, pharmacist and chemist of the XIX century Christian Ehrenfried von Weigel. Weigela is one of my favorite beautifully flowering deciduous shrubs. Why is it so good, what are the features in the care, cultivation and reproduction of weigels ?
First of all, of course, its large bell-shaped flowers are beautiful. In varietal weigels, they can reach a size of 5 cm. In the inflorescences, these bells are very densely arranged: in one, 5-7 pieces. Flowers appear from the sinuses of the leaves. They can be white, pink, red, carmine, and in the process of flowering, their color gradually changes. The flowers of my weigel are white with pink, there are a lot of them, and there are even more buds: the shrub blooms abundantly and has a tendency to maintainability: in our south of Ukraine, the weigel blooms in approximately the first decade of May, in summer it rests, and in the fall, in September-October blooms again. In any case, last year it was just that.
Not only weigel flowers are beautiful, but also its leaves are saturated green. And there are variegated varieties. Against the background of foliage, the flowers look even more elegant.
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Weigela requires protection from winds that damage and tear the leaves and flowers of the plant. Weigel is especially harmful north wind. Weigel planting is better in a sunny place. I have it growing in lace partial shade, which gives the crown of apricot . You can plant a weigel under an apple tree or under a nut - the scattered penumbra fits a weigel just like a bright sun. In a strong shadow, the shoots will begin to stretch, and the plant will bloom, most likely, badly.
Weigel is demanding on the composition and fertility of the soil: if you plant it on poor soils, it will grow and bloom badly. Therefore, when planting, you need to make a large hole - 60x60x60 cm - and lay a lot of compost in it with the addition of rotted manure, that is, you need to enrich the soil at least in some limited space, and then your weigel will develop normally.
Weigel Care in the Garden
Watering and feeding
Weigel needs to be watered regularly, especially during dry periods: a plant spends a lot of strength, moisture and nutrients on flowering. Therefore, weigel is recommended to feed a couple of times a season. If you just planted it and put enough fertilizer into the pit, then you can not feed the bush for a couple of years, but in the future fertilizer will be needed, especially in such poor soils as in my area.
I introduced the first fertilizer in the form of Nitroammofoski granules as soon as the snow began to melt. They, gradually dissolving, provided the weigel with food for abundant flowering. The next top dressing I introduced in June, after flowering was completed. At this time, the plant is in greater need of phosphorus and potassium, as it begins to lay flower buds. An excellent fertilizer for Weigela during this period is ash .
Weigela is quite resistant to low temperatures. I have it wintering without shelter, but if you have harsh winters, it is recommended to bend the branches of the bush to the ground and cover them with a spruce on top. Although, to my knowledge, this shrub winters wonderfully without any shelter in the suburbs.
How to prepare roses for wintering
Weigel is cut off literally right after the summer bloom, but if you want it to bloom again in the fall, you must remember that the second bloom will be formed on the shoots of the current year. If you missed the moment, and the shoots began to grow intensively, it is better not to trim: shorten the shoots next spring.
In general, it is recommended that weigel be rejuvenated by pruning once every 3-4 years: remove old, three-four-year-old branches, cut thin and weak shoots, you can even cut the bush on a stump. In such a radical pruning, there is nothing to worry about, weigela is a hardy plant, it will grow quickly, and you will have a bush like a young one.
Diseases and Pests
Unfortunately, weigel is sometimes affected by pests and diseases. Of the pests, the aphid plant , spider mites and leaf-eating caterpillars most often occupy . You can fight them with both chemical insecticidal drugs and gentle folk remedies: infusions of garlic or wormwood. I don’t particularly believe in these grandmother’s methods, but try it if you want.
Of the diseases, rust, spotting and rot are dangerous for Weigela. Against them, the same fungicides are used as for treating the garden: Bordeaux liquid , for example, with which you spray fruit trees and berry bushes in early spring. This proven drug can also be used for disease prevention on Weigel. Suitable for the fight against fungi on Weigel and modern fungicides .
Weigela successfully and simply propagated by cuttings, and in May, when it blooms. That’s how I got my bushes: I visited my friends here in Zaporozhye (then I hadn’t lived there yet), walked, saw beautiful flowering weigels in the park and took two cuttings from them that were safely rooted.
Cuttings need to be taken green from the shoots of the current year. Remove all lower leaves from them, leaving only one pair of upper leaves. The most interesting thing is that I planned to get home only after a week, and the problem arose of how to save the cuttings until this time. I always have a bottle of mineral water with me, not just drinking, but mineral. I poured most of the contents, leaving some water on the bottom, carefully shoved the stalk into the bottle and tried to place it so that the cut touched the water, then tightly closed the bottle with a lid. In this form, the stalk traveled with me for about a week.
When I arrived home, I cut the bottle, took out the cuttings and planted them for rooting, as I usually do. The process was successful, and now I have two weigel bushes, which in the autumn managed to give several flowers.
What determines the shape of the weigela bush
The most interesting is the crown shape of these bushes: they turned out to be some too spreading. There are plants whose crown shape depends on where the stalk was taken for propagation. A classic example is yew . If you root a lateral, that is, horizontally growing twig of yew, then the plant will grow sprawling from it, and if you take a vertically growing stalk, then the yew will tend to up.
Cultivation and varieties of white turf
Apparently, the weigel has the same peculiarity: for two years these bushes had a spreading shape, practically spread along the ground, even had to tie up shoots to sticks to lift them, but this year finally both bushes began to form powerful vertical shoots, and I I hope that in the end their crowns will take shape. You can adjust the shape of the crown by trimming the tips of the shoots, so that the bush becomes more dense and branched.
If you plant not one weigel, but, say, two, or decide to plant some other plant next to the weigela, observe a distance of at least 2 m between them, and preferably even 2.5-3 m: with good care, the weigel bush can grow big enough, keep that in mind.