Sakura is most often associated with Japan and its culture. Picnics under the canopy of flowering trees have long become an integral attribute of the meeting of spring in the Land of the Rising Sun. The financial and academic year here begins on April 1, just at that time in many regions the mass flowering of gardens begins. Therefore, many significant moments in the life of the Japanese are held under the sign of sakura blossom. But sakura grows well in cooler regions - certain species can be successfully grown even in Siberia. We will talk about the most interesting sakura species and varieties for different regions of Russia in an article.What sakura to choose for your garden?
The most common types of sakura
Sakura is a generic name. It combines several species that are grown as ornamental plants, have small inedible fruits or do not bear fruit at all. In Japan, there are more than 600 varieties of sakura, including wild forms and hybrids.
In 1963, the book "Garden Plants of Japan" was published, compiled by scientists-dendrologists of the University of Tokyo. According to this publication, the following species belong to sakura:
- mountain sakura (P. Jamasakura);
- edo cherry (P. yedoensis);
- short-boiled cherry (P. subhirtella);
- sargent cherry (P. sargentii);
- ferruginous cherry (P. glandulosa);
- bell cherries (P. campanulata);
- finely sawed cherry (P. serrulata);
- pointed cherry (C. serrulata).
What sakura blossoms in Japan?
The sakura blossom season in Japan begins in February. Opens it bell cherries, which is also called Taiwanese cherry or winter sakura. Its large cyclamen-red flowers are collected 2-3 in inflorescences or are located singly. They do not open completely and therefore, indeed, look like small bells. This highly decorative look is frost-resistant, but can withstand only up to -18 ° C. In our conditions, it is recommended for cultivation in container culture.
Cherry Edos in Japan it is known as somei yoshino, or Tokyo cherry. This variety of sakura appeared in the XIX century from the cross of different species. Currently, it is most widespread in the Land of the Rising Sun. Now these beautiful trees can be seen anywhere in Japan. In the middle of the last century, flowering branches of Yoshino somei became one of the symbols of Tokyo.
Typically, in cherries, leaves and flowers appear almost simultaneously, but in somei yoshino, blooming buds first bloom. The flowers are fragrant, with white or white-pink petals, they are collected 5-6 pieces in inflorescence. If you go into the sakura grove at the time of flowering, you get the feeling that you are in a soft pink cloud.
One of the oldest sakura species is Yamazakura, or mountain sakura. Unlike other Japanese cherries, which were obtained by crossing and hybridization, Yamazakura is still found in nature in the wild. Until the middle of the XIX century, this species was the most common in Japan, until it was gradually replaced by beautiful hybrid forms.
A distinctive feature of the species is the pale pink color of the petals, which bloom simultaneously with the leaves. Images of Yamazakura flowers can be seen in ancient paintings and objects of Japanese life, they are also often used in modern art. Like most Japanese sakura, Yamazakura blooms in April and blooms for two weeks.
Petals of Japanese cherries show off very quickly, but thanks to the non-simultaneous flowering of different sakura species, you can admire their beauty for several months. Behind the somei yoshino, a flowering wave of yeazakura with double white or bright pink flowers sets in, weeping branches of sidarezakura with small terry inflorescences of pale pink bloom behind it. From the slightest breath of the wind, thousands of thin petals fly off and slowly fall to the ground, forming a real floral carpet.Edos Cherry (Prunus yedoensis). Mountain Sakura (Prunus Jamasakura). Small Cherry (Prunus serrulata).
What sakura species grow in our gardens?
Many of our compatriots, seduced by sakura blossoms, are eager to settle such beauty on their sites. Is this possible, and for which regions are different types of sakura suitable?
It turns out that our gardeners have long been familiar with some of its varieties. So, in the territory of the former USSR at the beginning of the XX century "registered" finely sawed cherry. A large collection of plants was delivered from Japan to the Adler arboretum "Southern Cultures" back in 1936. And now this type of sakura can be found on the Black Sea coast of the Caucasus, in the Crimea (Nikitsky Botanical Garden), in the Krasnodar Territory, in the Stavropol Territory and on Sakhalin.
It successfully winters in Kiev, Lviv, Transcarpathia, as well as in Moldova. There have been attempts to grow finely sawn cherries in St. Petersburg, Estonia and Latvia, but the climate of the northern latitudes is not very suitable for her.
Small-sawn cherry is a fast-growing species that can reach up to 8-10 m in height. The tree is valued for its unusual glossy bark and bright pink inflorescences, which during flowering completely cover the branches. The crown of this cherry is funnel-shaped; to give it a beautiful shape, on young trees annually shorten a new growth. It is better to plant finely sawn cherry on sunny, protected from the wind areas with fertile soil.
Now decorative forms of finely sawn cherry have appeared, which are of particular interest to gardeners. Among them are varieties with white or pink double flowers, as well as plants with weeping branches.
Many decorative forms of sakura belong to the species spicy cherries. Based on this species, foreign breeders have bred a number of terry varieties, such as:
- Kwanzan - with dense flowers of intense purple hue.
- Amonogawa - with semi-double delicate pink inflorescences.
- Shirofugen - with white semi-double flowers, which at the end of flowering turn pink.
Unfortunately, in the middle zone of Russia only non-terry forms of this species winter well, the rest are recommended for cultivation in containers.
Glandular cherry - a small multi-stemmed shrub that reaches a height of 0.5 to 1.6 m. The flowers are pink, by the end of flowering they become almost white, do not fall within 2 weeks. In the wild, ferruginous cherries live up to a hundred years. Although the birthplace of this plant is China, Korea and the southern part of Primorye, it is well adapted to the climate of many regions of Russia.
Among gardeners, the decorative forms of this species - varieties are famous Alba of Captivity and Rosea Captivity. They are often called terry cherries, or northern sakura. The main advantage of terry varieties is luxurious flowering, which begins in May and lasts more than three weeks.
These decorative cherries are fast-growing shrubs 1.2-1.5 m high, with a rounded crown. The branches are flexible, reddish-brown in color, diverging from the center in different directions. Such plants look great against the backdrop of the lawn, near the water, in rockeries and rock gardens next to the stones.
Short-haired cherries - A slow-growing tree with a weeping crown with a diameter of up to 5 m. It blooms very abundantly in April-May, before the appearance of leaves. The flowers are simple, pink in color, their diameter is about 2 cm. This type of sakura is quite frost-resistant, can withstand frosts down to -29 ° C, but for a short time. Prefers sunny areas, but can grow in slight shading.
Plants look beautiful both in single and in group plantings. Short-bristled cherry is recommended to be planted in places protected from the wind and shelter for the winter.Sharp cherry (Cerasus serrulata). Ferruginous cherry (Prunus glandulosa). Short-bristled cherry (Prunus subhirtella).
Beautiful blooming sakura species for the northern regions
Terry cherry grows in the Main Botanical Garden (Moscow), which has a fairly high winter hardiness. White flowers on long pedicels, collected in brushes of 3-5 pieces, bloom simultaneously with late varieties of cherries.
Presumably, this species appeared as a result of crossbreeding. common cherries and terry-shaped spicy cherries. The hybrid is sterile, but can be propagated by root growth and inoculation to other related species.
Outstanding winter hardiness Sakhalin cherry (C. sachalinensis), which reaches a height of up to 8 m. It winters well in Siberia, the Khabarovsk Territory and in the European part of Russia. Sakhalin cherry blossoms begin early, simultaneously with apricot. The flowers are large, up to 4 cm in diameter, from pale pink to red-pink. Two forms of this species received the status of a variety:
- Rosanna - medium-sized tree with a wide oval crown and pink-red flowers.
- "Cypress" - with a narrow pyramidal crown and bright pink flowers.
Sargent Cherry - shrub or tree, reaching from 6 to 12 m in height and 5-8 m in width. The form of young plantations is funnel-shaped, with age their branches often take a horizontal position. Simple single flowers with pink petals are collected in inflorescences of 2-4 pcs. Flowering begins before the leaves bloom in April. At this time, the trees, covered with pink-red inflorescences, become real favorites of the garden. Unfortunately, flowering does not last long, only about a week, but this does not interfere in full enjoy the beauty.
The natural distribution area of sargent cherry is northern Japan, Korea, as well as the Far East and Sakhalin. This species grows mainly in mountainous areas, so it is much more hardy than other cultivated varieties of sakura. Plants can be successfully grown in central Russia and even at the latitude of St. Petersburg, if you provide them with a good wintering with shelter.Sargent Cherry (Prunus sargentii).
Do not forget about other flowering plants that can become a real decoration of our gardens and parks. These types include:
Louisania three-lobed (L. triloba) - a beautiful sprawling shrub that is frost and drought resistant. In April-May, numerous double flowers of a pink or pink-white hue are revealed on its branches. Flowering lasts up to 2 weeks.
Cherry Maak, or Cherry Bird Maak (P. maackii) - the most frost-resistant species, which is distinguished by a beautiful color of the bark - from reddish-orange to golden. Flowers are collected in beautiful long brushes of white color. This species is found in the wild in the Far East, in Primorye and China. The tree easily tolerates flooding and drought, transplanting and shearing, grows well in urban conditions.
Felt cherry (P. tomentosa) - pleases with its abundant flowering in May. Most often, this culture is planted in ornamental hedges, but its fruits are edible, and to taste they are in no way inferior to the fruits of ordinary cherries. Felt cherry is characterized by high frost resistance, unpretentious to soils, but poorly tolerates shading. The culture can grow well and bear fruit for only 10 years, but anti-aging pruning allows you to extend this period to 20 years.
Dear readers, and what sakura grow in your garden? Share your experience of growing these ornamental trees in the comments to the article.