Western thuja — overview of different varieties, selection of species, planting and care of the plant (80 photos)
The western thuja (Latin – Thúja occidentális) is an evergreen tree. The plant is part of a large family called Cypress, native to North America. Approximately in the middle of the 16th century, the plant was brought by navigators to Europe.
Thuja has excellent decorative properties. Looking at the photo of the Western thuja, you can get a certain idea of how it will look in the landscape.
This tree is very durable. Many gardeners are engaged in its cultivation, it is quite popular with landscape designers. Wood is used for carving and in the manufacture of furniture.
The crown of the tree has a pyramidal or oval shape, the roots have compact dimensions. The tree is characterized by slow growth, reaches a height of 12-20 meters.
The young plant has a smooth bark, its color is red–brown, with age the bark acquires a gray-brown hue. In an old tree, it flakes off, narrow strips separate from the trunk.
The needles of the thuja are scaly green, has a size of 0.2-0.4 cm, fits snugly to the branches. In winter, it acquires a brownish color. The life span of needles is 2-3 years, after this period it falls off along with small branches.
The fruits are small scaly cones (8-12 mm in diameter). The wood of almost all varieties of this plant is reddish in color, has a pleasant coniferous smell, and is resistant to rotting.
There are a sufficient number of varieties of thuja in nature. Special species have also been bred for planting in parks, gardens and squares. In Russia there are 10-14 frost-resistant species adapted to the local climatic conditions.
Thuja West Brabant
The columnar crown is 1.5 meters in diameter, reaches a height of five meters. The green shade of the needles changes to brown in winter. During the year, it increases in height by 30-35 cm, in width – by 15 cm.
Frost-resistant, easy to care for. It can be planted both in well-lit and shaded areas. However, the plant must be protected from strong winds.
The haircut allows him to form a beautiful crown. It has brown cones about 1 cm in size . The variety is great for use in hedges and alleys.
Tuya zapadnaya Smaragd
A cone-shaped, rather dense crown is characteristic. In height, the thuja reaches 4.5 meters. In the cold season, the needles retain their dark green color.
This variety grows very slowly, which avoids frequent haircuts and simplifies care. Smaragd is a frost–resistant and light-loving variety, but needs protection from too low temperatures and winds.
The narrow, columnar crown is about 7 meters high and 1.5 meters in diameter. The shoots are arranged horizontally, the color of the needles does not change in the cold season. In a year, it adds about twenty centimeters in height.
It needs abundant watering, does not tolerate dryness of the soil.
The tree is no higher than 3.5 meters tall, has a columnar crown with a diameter of about a meter. The needles do not change their green hue all year round. Slow growth is characteristic – about 12 cm per year. A haircut is required extremely rarely.
Grows well in any soil, quietly experiencing temperature changes, prefers well-lit or slightly pritenenie places, in General, unpretentious in care.
Frost-resistant, the crown has branches tightly pressed to the trunk. It has soft needles, the color of which remains unchanged throughout the year. A strong aroma is characteristic.
It reaches six meters in height, and the annual increase is 30 cm. Frequent haircuts are necessary, needs a moist loamy substrate.
The tree is about 3-5 meters tall, the crown is conical. Frost-resistant, has lemon-yellow needles. In the cold season, it acquires a bronze hue. Growth is slow, reaching two meters within 10 years.
Does not like the dryness of the soil, its color fades from the lack of light. Both single planting and combination with other trees or shrubs is possible.
Winter–hardy plant, has an ovoid crown, reaches a height of 3.5 meters, a width of one and a half meters. It changes its gray-green color for the winter to copper. The crown holds its shape perfectly, it does not need frequent pruning. Loves the sun-drenched spacious territories.
Claude of Gold
It is a shrub two meters high, the cone-shaped crown has a diameter of 1.2 meters. The needles are most often lemon-colored, there are also yellowish-orange species. In winter, it changes its shade to copper.
Taking care of it is not difficult, a bright place with wind protection is required. In low light, the color may fade. It tolerates drought well, too much watering is bad. It looks great in compositions with other plants.
Care and landing
Thuja is unpretentious and not too demanding in terms of care. It can grow in any soil and conditions. But it has its own peculiarities. Prefers a well-lit area most of all. However, planting in the shade will help to preserve decorative qualities for a longer period.
It grows well enough in dry soil. It is very light–loving - 6-7 hours of sun per day are necessary for the qualitative formation of the crown, otherwise the plant will stretch out.
Reproduction is carried out both by seeds and seedlings, cuttings. Given that her growth is very slow, the best option is to buy ready–made seedlings. But they are quite expensive, and the seeds rarely retain the characteristics of the variety. For these reasons, it is better to propagate the plant by cuttings.
Seeds for subsequent planting must be collected in autumn. The cones are cut off, dried in a cool room (the temperature should not exceed 7 degrees). After the scales dry out, the seeds are extracted and stored until spring in cloth bags.
After the first snow appears, the seeds are placed directly in the bag on the ground, sprinkled with a layer of snow about 30 cm thick – they need stratification.
Planting of Western thuja with the help of these seeds is carried out in the spring. They are laid in grooves previously filled with water, with a distance between them of 10-15 cm. Planting is carried out to a shallow depth, only 0.5 cm. After planting, they must be sprinkled with dry earth, mulched with needles (sawdust is also suitable).
Watering of seedlings is carried out regularly, but not too abundantly, at first protection from too intense sunlight is provided. The tree grows very slowly – during the first year it adds only 4-5 cm.
The soil around the seedling is mulched with sawdust, peat. After three years from the moment of landing, a dive is performed, and landing on a permanent place is permissible only after 4-5 years.
For propagation by cuttings, they are cut in the spring, preferably in cloudy hours. The stalk is taken from a young annual shoot, it should be at least 10 cm long, and the tree itself should be 4-8 years old. Cut cuttings are immersed in a weak manganese solution for a day. Then planted in the ground to a depth of 5-6 cm at an angle of 20-30 degrees.
Planting in containers or pots is acceptable. You can also plant it in the open ground, be sure to cover it with a film, with a distance between them of 10-15 cm.
The cuttings carried out in the spring helps the plants to take root as well as possible and quickly go into growth. Cuttings in summer do not give such results, it is necessary to wait for rooting until next year.
Photo of tui zapadnaya