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In the wild, Korean fir grows on the Korean Peninsula, forms coniferous forests, or is part of mixed forests. In Germany, in 1986, breeder Gunther Horstmann created a new crop variety - the Silberlock fir. In Russia, coniferous trees are grown relatively recently. The decorative habit of a perennial culture has found application in landscape design.
Description of Korean fir Silberlock
A perennial coniferous plant is the most frost-resistant representative of its species. Silberlok fir feels comfortable in the climate of central Russia. The buds open when the temperature is above zero; they are extremely rarely damaged by recurrent frosts. A crop with high drought tolerance, so the coniferous tree can often be found in the southern regions.
Korean fir Silberlock is undemanding to the composition of the soil, grows on neutral, slightly acidic, alkaline, even saline types. The only condition is that the soil should be light, the best option is a loamy composition or deep sandy loam. Korean fir Silberlok does not tolerate waterlogging of the soil, it loses its decorative effect in the shade.
The evergreen tree grows slowly, the annual growth is 7-8 cm. By the age of 10, the height of the Silberlok fir reaches 1.5-1.7 m. Then the growth decreases, the tree does not grow above 4.5 m. The biological cycle of the Korean variety Silberlock is within 50 years.
- The Korean fir Silberlock forms a symmetrical cone-shaped crown. The volume of the lower part is 1.5 m, upon reaching the end point of growth, it grows up to 3 m. The lower skeletal branches are located low, touch the ground, grow at an angle. The higher the branches are, the smaller the growth angle and length. The trunk is wide, tapering from below to the apex into one, less often into two tops.
- The bark of young Korean fir is dark gray, smooth, the color darkens with age, longitudinal grooves form on the surface. Young shoots in spring with needles in the form of rudiments of yellow color, by autumn they become maroon.
- The decorative effect of Korean fir is given by needles, it reaches a length of up to 7 cm, flat, sickle-shaped, the ends are concave to the trunk. It grows in two rows. The lower part is light green, the upper part is light blue. The needles are thin at the base, widen upward, the point is absent, they seem to be cut, soft and thornless. Visually, the crown is perceived as completely green, covered with frost on top.
- When the plant reaches 7 years of vegetation, cone-shaped cones form on the annual shoots. They grow vertically, the length of the seed is 4-6 cm, the width is 3 cm. The surface is uneven, the scales are pressed tightly, have a bright purple color.
Korean fir does not have resin channels, the enzyme accumulates on the surface, the stems are heavily saturated with resin, sticky to the touch.
Important! The fir needles of the Korean Silberlock have a delicate lemon scent.
Young trees are brighter, there are more cones on the branches. After 15 years of growth, the lower part of the needles becomes dark green, the upper becomes steel color.
Silberlock fir in landscape design
The variety of Korean fir Silberlock, due to its decorative habitus, is a favorite in design compositions. The blue color of the needles and bright cones give a festive solemnity to the site. Single and mass plantings of the Korean fir Silberlock are used to decorate city parks, front entrances of private estates and office buildings. Used as an element of landscape design for landscaping:
- Garden paths - planted in a line along the edges to simulate an alley.
- The coastal zone of artificial reservoirs.
- Japanese rock garden to mark the border of the rockery.
- Rock garden background.
- Urban neighborhoods.
Used as a tapeworm in the center of flower beds and lawns. Korean blue fir Silberlock looks aesthetically pleasing in composition with barberry, spirea. It goes well with juniper and golden thuja.
Planting and caring for Silberlock fir
The place for the Korean fir Silberlock is determined taking into account that the evergreen tree will be on the site for many years. The coniferous culture does not tolerate transplanting well; in most cases, after the transfer, the Korean fir does not take root and dies.
For the normal development and formation of a decorative crown, the photosynthesis of the Silberlock fir requires an excess of ultraviolet radiation. A perennial crop is placed in a well-lit area. The root of the seedling does not react well to waterlogging, the soil with closely adjacent groundwater is not considered for planting.
Seedling and planting plot preparation
The designated area for Korean fir is prepared 3 weeks before planting. The soil is dug up, weed roots are removed, ash and a complex of mineral fertilizers are applied. The fir root system is deep, the fertile soil layer nourishes the tree only for the first 2 years, then the root goes deeper. For planting, a nutrient composition is prepared from sand, soil from the placement of the seedling, peat in equal parts. For 10 kg of the composition, add 100 g of nitroammophoska.
A Korean fir seedling is purchased at least 3 years of age. It should have a closed root system, with a smooth trunk and needles. If fir is bred with its own material, prophylaxis and disinfection of the root system is carried out before planting. The seedling is placed in a 5% manganese solution for 2 hours, then in an antifungal agent for 30 minutes.
Fir seedlings can be planted in the spring, when the ground has warmed up to 150 C, or fall. For regions with a temperate climate, it is better to carry out work in the spring, so that during the summer the seedling has time to take root well. For warm climates, planting time is unimportant. The works are carried out approximately in April and early September. The best option is in the evening.
Planting Silberlock fir:
- They dig a hole taking into account the size of the root system: measure the length of the root to the neck, add 25 cm to the drainage and a layer of the mixture. The result is a depth of approximately 70-85 cm.The width is calculated from the volume of the root with the addition of 15 cm.
- Drainage is placed at the bottom, small fragments of bricks, coarse crushed stone or gravel can be used.
- The mixture is divided into 2 parts, one part is poured onto the drainage, a hill is made in the center of the pit.
- The root system is dipped in a thick clay solution, placed on a hill in the center, and the roots are distributed along the bottom of the pit.
- The remaining soil is poured in parts, carefully tamped so that there is no emptiness left.
- Leave 10 cm to the top of the hole, fill it with sawdust.
- The root collar is not deepened.
Advice! After planting, water the seedling with water with the addition of a growth stimulating agent.
The trunk circle is mulched with crushed tree bark or peat.
Watering and feeding
Caring for the Korean fir Silberlock is not laborious. The tree is unpretentious, tolerates low air humidity well. Only young trees up to 3 years of vegetation are watered, using the sprinkling method. If precipitation falls once every 2 weeks, there is enough moisture for the fir. In dry summers, the plant is watered according to the same schedule. For an adult culture, such a procedure is not necessary. The tree gets enough moisture from the soil thanks to the deepened root.
Fir planting nutrients are sufficient for 2 years. In the next 10 years of growth, mineral fertilizers are applied every spring, the "Kemira" product has proven itself well.
Mulching and loosening
Loosening of the Korean fir seedling is carried out constantly, the compaction of the upper soil layer must not be allowed. The root system will be weak when oxygen is deficient. Weeds are removed as they grow. After 3 years of age, these activities are irrelevant, weeds do not grow under a dense canopy, and the root system is sufficiently formed.
Fir is mulched immediately after planting. By autumn, the seedling is huddled, covered with a layer of peat mixed with sawdust or tree bark, and covered with straw or dry leaves on top. In the spring, the trunk circle is loosened and the mulch is replaced, taking into account that the neck is open.
The formation of the crown of the Korean Silberlock fir is not required, it forms a regular pyramidal shape with a decorative blue color of the needles. Perhaps in early spring, a cosmetic correction is required, consisting of the removal of dry areas.
Preparing for winter
For an adult tree, preparations for winter are to increase the mulch layer. If the summer was hot and without precipitation, about 2 weeks before possible frost, the fir is carried out with water-charging irrigation.
Young trees under 3 years of vegetation in cold winter conditions require protection:
- the seedling is watered abundantly;
- spud, mulch with a layer of at least 15 cm;
- branches are carefully collected to the trunk, covered with covering material and wrapped with twine;
- cover with spruce branches.
In winter, the structure is covered with snow.
You can propagate Korean fir on the site by seeds, layering and cuttings. An alternative method is to purchase a 3-year-old seedling from a nursery. Silberlock fir is not a hybrid, it gives a full-fledged planting material that fully retains the habit and varietal characteristics of the mother tree.
- Cones are formed in the spring, they ripen until autumn, for the winter the seeds remain in seedlings until the next spring.
- The cones are taken in early spring, they choose the ones that have opened, where the seeds are well defined on the scales.
- Seeds are sown in a mini greenhouse or volumetric container.
- After 3 weeks, seedlings will appear, if there is no threat of frost, the plant is taken out to the site in a shaded place.
Attention! Seedlings for permanent planting will be ready in 3 years.
Cuttings are carried out in spring or autumn:
- take material from annual shoots;
- cut cuttings 10 cm long;
- placed with the lower part of the shoot in wet sand for rooting;
- after rooting, they are seated in separate containers.
The next year, they are transferred to a specific place for the fir.
The fastest and most productive method for reproduction of Korean fir Silberlok is by layering from the lower branches. Shoots are located close to the soil, many lie on the ground and take root on their own. The rooted area is separated from the branch and immediately transplanted to another place. If there are no layers, they are obtained independently. The lower shoots are fixed to the ground and covered with earth.
Diseases and pests of fir Silberlock
The variety of Korean fir Silberlock rarely infects the infection, the appearance of the fungus is promoted by overmoistening of the root system. Debuts red-brown, less often motley root rot. The disease spreads to the trunk, then affects the crown. Deep depressions remain at the site of localization of the fungus. The needles turn yellow and crumble, the tree begins to dry.
At an early stage, an infected tree can be rescued with Fundazol or Topsin. If the lesion is extensive, the antifungal treatment was ineffective, the tree is removed from the site so that the spores of the pathogen do not spread to healthy trees.
It parasitizes on the Korean Hermes fir, the larvae of the pest feed on needles and quickly spread through the tree. The crown is treated with insecticides, the trunk is treated with copper sulfate. Areas of mass accumulation of larvae are cut and removed from the site.
When the spider mite spreads, the tree is sprayed with "Aktofit".
Silberlock fir is a type of Korean fir. Frost-resistant, light-loving culture, tolerates high air temperatures well, grows with minimal humidity. A coniferous tree with a decorative blue crown is used to decorate home gardens, squares, recreation areas, and administrative offices. The culture is adapted to the ecology of megalopolises, Silberlok fir is planted in urban micro-districts, on the walking grounds of children's and educational institutions.