Caring for cinquefoil is not difficult
This plant is a gardener’s real dream, because caring for cinquefoil is so simple that even a beginner can handle it, and a variety of varieties and colors allow you to use the shrub in various garden compositions.
Deciduous shrub cinquefoil, native to the mountainous regions of the Far East, Altai, Siberia, Central Asia, Europe, China, Japan and North America. The plant has several historical names, each of which reveals its essence:
- Potentilla – for the similarity of leaves with the paws of birds;
- Kuril tea – due to its medicinal properties, the broth is often consumed in the form of tea;
- dasiphora – from the description of the appearance of a bush, the leaves and stems of which are densely covered with fine hairs, “dasys” – “thick-haired”, “phoros” – “bearing”;
- five-leafed flower – originally a cinquefoil flower has five petals.
Thanks to the efforts of breeders, decorative varieties of Kuril tea abound in a variety of shapes and colors that will bring bright notes to any garden area..
Potential use of Potentilla
Five-leafed shrub is an almost universal shrub that is easy to form and retains its decorative appearance from early spring to late autumn..
Low-growing varieties of Potentilla look great in a rock garden. The dwarf bush, covered with bright flowers from June to October, will become the center of the composition and an excellent company for decorative deciduous creeping perennials..
For a rock garden, it is better to choose a dwarf shrub cinquefoil, which will not cause problems in care, while a creeping type of shrub will have to be cut more often due to its aggressive growth.
Tall varieties, reaching 1.5 m, are best suited for use in creating a hedge. Such a “live” fence will delight the eye until winter. So that the hedge does not lose its decorative effect in the cold season, the five-leafed plant can be well combined with evergreen conifers, moreover, they are very favorable to such a neighborhood..
Caring for cinquefoil
The shrub is a real find for the ever-busy summer residents who nevertheless want to enjoy the view of their plot. It is especially pleasing that Kuril tea is practically not susceptible to diseases, foliar treatment with boric acid or a weak solution of potassium permanganate will help to cope with this. Basic plant care consists of 3 elementary parts:
- top dressing;
The plant is unpretentious, but responds gratefully to watering, especially in hot summer. For good growth, it is advisable to water Kuril tea twice a week. The water temperature does not play a special role, and the optimal amount is about 5 liters for each bush.
For feeding Potentilla, it is better to use combined potassium-phosphorus fertilizers. You can use both ready-made mixtures and make them yourself. To do this, dissolve 20-30 g of phosphates and 10-15 g of potassium fertilizers in 10 liters of water. This amount is sufficient for one adult plant. The first feeding of Potentilla is best done in the spring, after the buds have awakened..
Spring care for cinquefoil plays the greatest role in the development of the plant. As soon as the snow melts, you can carry out the first pruning of Potentilla shrub. At this time, last year’s flower stalks are removed. If there was no time for the first pruning, then the main pruning of Potentilla shrub is carried out when the buds awaken and it will be seen how well the plant has wintered.
If the winter was harsh, bush cinquefoil can come out of hibernation for a long time, so do not rush to pruning.
In the fall, the five-leafed plant is pruned, preparing the plant for wintering. At this time, remove all overgrown shoots. Give the shrub the desired shape. With the first frosts, you can remove the remaining cinquefoil peduncles, then they will not need to be cut in the spring..
Reproduction and planting of shrubs
The plant is unpretentious to soils, light-requiring, although it tolerates partial shade. If you want to get the most positive result, then do not be too lazy to observe a few rules when planting and then Potentilla will thank you with fast growth and abundant flowering.
It is best to plant Potentilla shrub in the spring, if in the spring you did not have time to decorate the site with this plant, then it is better to postpone planting until autumn. The optimum depth of the pit for planting shrubs is 50-60 cm. A drainage layer, about 15 cm, is poured onto the bottom. Further, the pit is filled with a soil mixture of sand, humus and sod land. Regardless of the season, planting a five-leafed leaf is best done in warm, cloudy weather..
The top layer of the soil must be mulched, this will help to avoid excessive drying out of the soil. For mulching, you can use sawdust, needles or peat.
You can propagate cinquefoil shrub in several ways:
- dividing the bush;
The most popular is the propagation of Potentilla by shrub cuttings. In the summer, cuttings 10-15 cm long are cut from one-year-old twigs. The lower leaves and buds are carefully removed. Prepared cuttings are placed in a loose, well-moistened substrate in boxes, or in a shady part of the garden. To accelerate the formation of the root system, the top is covered with plastic bags or cans. For the winter, the seedlings are covered with a layer of sawdust or needles to protect them from frost.
Reproduction by layering
By layering, you can propagate low-growing, spreading varieties of Potentilla, which have branches growing parallel to the ground. For rooting, a small incision is made on the bark of the plant, near the bud, it is placed in moist soil and pressed. Layers can be separated from the parent bush for the next year, in the spring.
Dividing the bush
The strongest planting material is obtained by propagating Kuril tea by dividing the bush. Plants aged 4 years and older are suitable for this. An adult plant is dug up, a part of the root with growth buds is separated from it. The cuttings are placed in a rooting agent (Bioglobin, Gumix, or whatever you are accustomed to using) for 12 hours. After that, the plants are planted in pre-prepared pits so that the growth bud is 5 cm deep.Rotransplantation of Potentilla by dividing the bush can be carried out in autumn or spring.
Growing from seeds
Seed propagation is the longest way, but thanks to it, the most decorative and rare varieties of Potentilla shrub can be grown. For planting, seeds are suitable that have been stored for no more than 3 years. If the seeds are too dry, then they should be soaked in water for a day to awaken. The seeds are placed in fertile soil to a depth of 2-3 cm.Water and cover with a film or a plastic bottle.
The first shoots appear in three weeks, after another month they can be planted. A plant grown from seeds will delight with flowering in the third year after planting..
The medicinal properties of Potentilla shrub
There are legends about the healing power of Potentilla shrub. According to legend, Ilya Muromets used it to restore strength and drive out evil spirits. And these are not just fairy tales, the medicinal properties of Kuril tea are used not only in folk, but also in official medicine. Cinquefoil will become not only a garden decoration, but also a real living first aid kit for the whole family..
A decoction of leaves and stems helps fight hypertension, thyroid diseases. Copes with diarrhea, colitis, is used for diseases of the gastrointestinal tract and liver. The use of Kuril tea for the prevention of cardiovascular diseases has also proven itself well..
Rhizomes of Potentilla shrubs in the form of a decoction, used to remove radiation from the body, reduce cholesterol levels, with rheumatism and diseases of the musculoskeletal system.
The ability of Potentilla shrub to fight many is not due to magical properties, as was believed in the old days, but to a unique chemical composition that many pharmacological preparations can envy. So, this bright shrub is rich in substances such as: iron, iodine, zinc, nickel, silver, etc..
All varieties of Potentilla have medicinal properties, however, they are most pronounced in Potentilla white-flowered.
Kuril tea, due to its ability to lower blood pressure, should be used with caution if hypotonic.