Evergreen honeysuckle, Lonicera nitida - care tips

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Lonicera nitida, the evergreen honeysuckle from the honeysuckle family, provides year-round fresh green in the garden with its leaves. The small shrub, which depending on the variety can grow a maximum of 100 cm high and up to 80 cm wide, is often used as a boxwood substitute. Many hobby gardeners regularly cut it into shape, so that the bushes produce hearts, balls or animals according to their preferences. It is very easy to care for and is also kept in the bucket.
Since the evergreen honeysuckle is very broad, sufficient for a dense hedge about 4 to 5 plants per m. For embankments, 5 to 7 plants per m² are recommended. For each plant, pick up a planting hole that is about twice as deep and twice as wide as the root ball of the plant. Loosen the roots in the pot and water them in a bucket with water. Then place the hedge myrtle in the planting hole and fill it with humus rich substrate, so that the plant grows well. Water the plants well!
Lonicera nitida thrives most beautifully in sunny locations, but also copes well in the shade. In addition to its use for small hedges or as a form of shrub it is also used as a background planting for perennial flowerbeds.
In humus-rich, well-drained and nutrient-rich substrate the embankment myrtle grows best. Basically, however, it hardly makes any claims and therefore also copes with all other soils. The substrate should not be too moist. When planted in a bucket, conventional container potting soil is well-suited, which is slightly loosened up with clay granules.
Tip: Always make sure that no waterlogging occurs. If the soil at the site is too clayey, place gravel or coarse sand as drainage in the lower third of the planting hole. Likewise, a drainage layer of, for example, pumice or clay granules should be introduced into the bucket as the lowest layer. And the bucket should have drain holes that are covered with small potsherds so the holes do not clog with substrate.
to water
Evergreen honeysuckle want to be watered regularly, especially during the growing season. Occasional dehydration does not affect the plants. However, they need good irrigation in longer periods of drought so that they are not weakened too much.
Tip: Only water when the upper layer of soil has dried off, both when planting in the tub and when planting in the garden.


Start fertilizing the purchased honeysuckle at the earliest one year after planting. Crops grown from cuttings can be fertilized with good compost right from the start. Container plants provide you with commercially available liquid fertilizer every 4 to 8 weeks in spring and summer.
To cut
Lonicera nitida is well cut tolerant and is cut by many hobby gardeners after flowering in early summer. If you like, you can also ripen the purple little berries that form from the fragrant flowers. The birds like the berries very much in winter as food. However, they are slightly toxic to humans!
As the slope myrtle increases rapidly in width and height, it also tolerates radical cuts at the end of the winter season. The more the evergreen honeysuckle is cut, the better it branches and the denser and more compact it grows. Many hobby gardeners also like to use them as a wall planting. If the hedge myrtle once out of shape, it is simply pruned.
  • Always work with sharp and germ-free cutters
  • it must not break branches
  • Otherwise, entry ports of pathogens can arise
Tip: Shape cuts for hearts or other shapes can be made in any season and at the end of winter.
The evergreen honeysuckle is good frost hardy and tolerates depending on the variety -15° to -20° C. So that it can not be drought in so-called Kahlfrostperioden, must also be poured in the winter on frost-free days. It is best to water the plants once more before winter comes. For wintering the Lonicera nitida in the bucket a cookie on the wall is optimal. If some shoots freeze, they are simply removed in the spring. The hedge myrtle drives smoothly again.
To multiply the evergreen honeysuckle usually cuttings are used. These can, for example, be cut from the clippings with regular shape cutting in the summer as shoot or head cuttings. The shoots should already be slightly lignified. The shoot cuttings should be about 15 to 18 cm long and the head cuttings 5 ​​to 8 cm long. Head cuttings are cuttings that are cut from the end of the shoot, while cuttings come from the rest of the shoot.At each cut, remove all leaves except for 3 pairs of leaves and cut the bottom of the cuttings at an angle. Then place the cuttings with the obliquely cut end in small pots with potting soil or directly in a nursery bed in the garden.

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The pots can be placed in the garden in a sheltered place or in the greenhouse or conservatory. Then keep the small plantlets free from frost for at least 1 year before coming to their intended location.
Diseases and pests
The evergreen honeysuckle is a very robust plant and is virtually not affected by any diseases or pests. Only when growing with cuttings can it come in the conservatory or in the greenhouse to infestation with spider mites. These stubborn, sucking animals, you can but with the help of predatory mites or Niempräparaten in the greenhouse.
Niempräparate with Niemsamen or Niemöl are also suitable in the winter garden - but only after you have shed the infested plantlets or cuttings in the seed pots with water. This is best done in the bathtub or on the lawn or terrace with the garden hose. The undersides of the leaves should also be rinsed off. So that the earth is not washed out of the pots, it is best to pack them in foil bags.
Check the small plants for spider mites regularly during the following weeks and repeat the procedures if necessary.
The variants of the evergreen honeysuckle
If one decides for the Tartar honeysuckle, one obtains a plant, which is particularly adaptable. Whether she is placed in a sunny or shady place plays a minor role for her, as she can adapt to both circumstances optimally. The Tartar honeysuckle can reach a height of up to four meters.
In bloom, she wears beautiful pink flowers, which are a true eye candy. The trained berries shine from July to August in a strong shade of red. They are poisonous to humans, but songbirds love them very much. The Tartar honeysuckle can also be used for plantings.
Grown-up, the plant can tolerate even strong sunlight, urban climate or harsh climate and shade easily.
The red honeysuckle, which many know under the name common honeysuckle, is a representative of the evergreen honeysuckle. It is especially frequented by butterflies, so it is ideal if you want to observe many butterflies in the summer months.
Resistant, the red honeysuckle is not only against strong sunlight and drought, but equally against road salt. In winter, the honeysuckle is rather bald to call, but it forms in the spring again and again new shoots. The red honeysuckle should be planted on a strongly calcareous soil and reaches a height of up to three meters.
In contrast, the scented-tailed cherry blossoms in the period from December to March. The name was given to it because of the separate fragrance, which reminds of the honey's sweetness. The variant, also known as fragrant honeysuckle, however, can sustain frost damage, especially when the winter was very long and hard. In this case, the cut must be made.
The Lonicera nitida is a densely branched, evergreen shrub or groundcover, depending on the variety. The plants grow strongly in the width, so they are very well suited for greening of larger areas and slopes, but also as small hedges in the garden very well come into their own. Also known as hedge myrtle, the shrub is a robust and disease-resistant alternative to boxwood and can be cut into shape as well.

Video Board: How to Prune Box Honeysuckle - Instructional Video w/ Plant Amnesty.

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