Tree strawberry description
Some types of unusual garden crops native to warm countries perfectly take root in our latitudes. These plants also include curls, also known as strawberry or strawberry tree. Many gardeners would like to grow it, but do not know where to start. Read on in the review on how to plant and grow curls and how to care for them.
An unusual plant with the exotic name of curls is popularly called a strawberry tree for fruits similar in color and shape to strawberries, or garden strawberries.
Curls are a tree of the Mulberry family. Its homeland is East Asia, and now the strawberry tree can be found everywhere in Afghanistan and Iran. It also takes root well in Greece, Turkey, China, the southern part of Russia, the warm regions of Ukraine, Belarus - in any countries with a subtropical climate or in any conditions where such a climate can be created and maintained throughout the year.
Did you know? The leaves of a strawberry tree in East Asia are fed to silkworms on farms (for example, if there are no leaves of a mulberry tree or you need to replace them with something).
On average, curls live up to 50 years and can reach a maximum height of 6 meters. Fruits almost until the end of the life cycle of the plant, starting from the first year of planting. Reproduction occurs in three ways: cuttings, seeds, seedlings.
Cudrania tricuspidata is a tree. It is perennial, deciduous, can grow to a height of 3 or more meters. In appearance, the strawberry tree may not differ from a large bush - it depends on how the crown is formed. This plant can be cultivated both on the ground and at home, for example, on a balcony or loggia.In the latter case, the bush will be smaller, and its trunk will be lighter than that of fellow species that grow on the ground. The plant belongs to the dioecious, that is, both female and male flowers are present on the inflorescences. It blooms in May - June, depending on weather conditions and the amount of heat. It does not tolerate strong humidity and dampness, loves sunlight and dies in frozen ground.
With enough space and light, the strawberry tree forms a dark brown trunk with branches on which fruits and leaves are located. In the photo of the plant it can be seen that when pruning the branches, a bush can also be formed (depending on how much space the gardener allocates for this crop). The shape of the tree does not affect the fruiting level. Thanks to the "tenacious" branches, this plant is used for landscaping parks, creating hedges.
The fruits of curls immediately resemble strawberries, raspberries, and strawberries. They are round, with many seeds, in appearance similar to the fruits of mulberries that everyone knew from childhood, only larger ones. The taste of these berries is sweet, similar to the taste of persimmon. The pulp of the fruit is dense.Cut curled fruit. They are used mainly for fresh consumption, for the preparation of stewed fruit, pies, jam. The color of the berries varies from red to maroon, the diameter is from 2 cm to 5 cm, inside the fruit there are small brown edible seeds.
Important! After collecting the berries are not suitable for storage for longer than a day - they lose their medicinal qualities and even color. That is why the curly fruit is eaten fresh or immediately added to sweet pastries as a filling.
And centuries ago, and now strawberry curly tree is grown in China, Korea, Nepal, Afghanistan, Iran, the southern regions of Russia, in the mountainous regions of Ukraine, as well as in other countries - not in large quantities, but rather for the sake of decorating sites or as an unusual element in the garden .
How to grow
There are two ways to grow Cudrania: in the ground and indoors. The second, rather, is a decorative option, but even in such conditions, the tree can bear fruit. Consider a description of both methods of cultivation.
In the open ground
An ideal option for growing, if you can guarantee a strawberry tree a constant stream of sunlight and good illumination. The soil should be slightly acidic or neutral, it is better if it is loam. Sod land, peat, sand and humus are suitable soil formulations for planting crisps.
Video: Exotic tree - curls
In a room, it grows fast enough and feels comfortable if it has enough light. To cultivate it in a pot, place a layer of drainage on the bottom (small stones, pebbles), and on top - loose, nutritious prepared soil for bush plants. Such soil is sold ready-made in suburban centers or stores.
The method is complex and time-consuming, since grown from seeds of curls begins to bear fruit only 10 years after planting. However, if there is no goal to get a huge crop, but you want to decorate a site or a loggia, boldly grow a strawberry tree, because already in the first year the seedling will grow 1 meter.
When to sow
It is recommended to sow seeds of frizz at the same period when they were removed from the fruit, that is, at the end of August. It is easy to extract them - just pick the ripe berry, crush and rinse the seeds in a sieve or on a cloth. The resulting brown grains can immediately be planted in the prepared substrate.
The sowing pattern is as follows:
- pour a mixture of peat, sand, perlite and humus into a small pot;
- the seeds planted right in the pot are covered with a film so that it does not touch the ground;
- put the pot in the refrigerator - where vegetables and fruits are stored (lower cell);
- two months later, the pot is transferred to heat - the temperature in the room should not fall below + 21 ° C;
- the soil is constantly moistened.
Special care for seedlings of curls is not required.
It is important to provide three conditions:
- constant heat - temperature not lower than + 21 ° С;
- soil moisture (however, it is important not to confuse it with wet earth and dampness);
- space and plenty of sun.
Ready to be planted into the ground, the mist can be planted already after the seedlings have grown stronger, a trunk 20 cm long will appear.
Important! Curls loves loose soil, so it is recommended to carry out loosening as often as possible, so that air flows to the roots.
The landing process is as follows:
- prepare a hole for planting a tree (dig a hole 1 meter deep, at the bottom of which a drainage is poured, at least 30 cm);
- Pour nutrient soil into the pit (peat, humus, sand and soddy soil are taken in equal parts);
- the soil should be well loosened, then a seedling should be placed, having the roots straightened before planting, another layer of soil should be poured on top and the ground should be carefully taken.
After landing care
So that young curls grow well and give in the future a sufficient number of fruits, follow the simple rules of caring for the plant after moving to the ground.
In the first year after planting
First year care rules:
- in the first year after planting in a nutritious earth mixture, it is not necessary to fertilize the plant;
- provide good soil looseness so that the roots receive a sufficient amount of oxygen;
- in winter in the southern regions the tree is wrapped with natural fabric for the winter;
- on the root part for the winter, straw or conifer needles are poured;
- during the formation of flowers, fertilizer is introduced into the soil in the form of humus.
Did you know? Curls have a rejuvenating effect - in antiquity, its fruits were used as the "elixir of youth." Asian women ate the plant in question as a means for the beauty of hair and youthful skin.
For an adult plant
An adult plant should be looked after by performing these simple steps:
- in winter, a tree trunk is wrapped;
- a natural protective layer is laid on the root zone (hay, conifer needles);
- in the second year after planting, mineral fertilizers are added to the ground (for example, Kemira Universal or Bogatyr);
- the first 5 years of the tree’s life cut long shoots to form a crown;
- the curls should be constantly sprayed, especially if the summer is very hot (this recommendation applies to both domestic and garden plants).
To make the strawberry tree strong, beautiful and easy to harvest from, gardeners form a crown - this is the process of pruning young shoots and branches to give it a spherical or other shape. At home and in the garden, this procedure is slightly different.
In the open ground
The longest shoots or those that grow inward, to the trunk, are pruned by secateurs every spring. Re-view the shoots in the summer - they are again pruned if necessary (if there is no goal to create a continuous mass of branches).
In November, the curly leaves the leaves, and at home, too, and new ones appear in March. After dropping leaves, the tree does not need to be cut - it must sleep until spring. Branches and trunk are recommended to wrap with natural fabric.
The most commonly used form is bonsai (a tree with a curved crown).Types of Bonsai Forms
This is done in the following way:
- first, part of the bark is cut off (so as not to damage the trunk), and it goes deep into the soil. Then, roots grow at the cut site, which are then used to form the rest of the crown;
- after the growth of new roots on a section, the strawberry tree is transplanted into a square wide pot (for convenient processing of branches);
- Now remove the three lower branches and select those that will begin to form a bonsai;
- wire is used to form the trunk - a trunk is wrapped around it, and a wire frame is formed under the lower branches, to which part of the branches are attached;
- this must be done carefully and gradually, day after day, gradually tilting the branches in the right direction so as not to damage the bark.
It does not tolerate frosts badly: at high subzero temperatures, the root system dies in the strawberry tree - both young and perennial plants can disappear. Indoor curls are transferred to the room during the winter, put on the sunny side and constantly sprayed to avoid overdrying the leaves.Street trees are wrapped in a homespun tightly, sprinkled with dried needles or straw on the roots, sometimes the surface near the roots is even covered with oilcloth, and on top again with a cloth.
Diseases and Pests
Curls rarely get sick - it is resistant to pests and insects. If the air is too dry, the trees in the apartment may be affected by thrips. Their second name is the spider mite. Such parasites are easy to recognize by proboscis and wings. They suck the juice from the leaves, and the affected leaves grow ugly, with dots and defects.
You can get rid of parasites like this:
- to begin with, put a potted tree in the bathroom and wash the leaves well;
- each leaf is inspected for larvae, removed with a cotton swab;
- transplant the tree into a new pot with new earth, completely discard the old one. The previous pot is washed and disinfected;
- sprayed with curd “Agrovertin” or “Actellik”, diluted according to the instructions (10 ml of the drug per 10 liters of water);
- the tree is placed under the film for 24 hours;
- after a week, spraying is carried out again and again put the plant under the film for 24 hours.