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Anyone who thinks of the genus of honeysuckle (Lonicera), also known as honeysuckle, has first of all the looming climbing plants in mind. In fact, about 180 hardy species belong to this genus in a variety of growth forms: in addition to the climbing there are also low-growing species that are good for green areas, and upright growing shrubs. In all groups there are both deciduous and evergreen species, which are mainly native to the northern hemisphere. The belonging to the family of honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae) genus thus offers gardeners a variety of uses.
As different as the growth forms, as different are the stature heights of the species. While some climbers can reach heights of up to eight meters, such as Lonicera x heckrottii 'Goldflame', the low-growing species and varieties are sometimes only 50 centimeters high. However, they are happy to make up for this low growth height with broad growth. Thus, for example, a single specimen of the evergreen honeysuckle 'Hohenheimer spring' (Lonicera nitida) only between 50 and 70 inches high, but can be over the years quite 1.5 meters wide. The honeysuckles are mainly known for their rapid growth: the front runner here is the evergreen honeysuckle (Lonicera henryi), which is one of the ailing species, with an annual increase between 60 and 100 centimeters.
Lonicera x brownii thrilled with bright red flowers
Whether climbing, low or upright, summer or wintergreen: all honeysuckle is their leaf shape. They are arranged opposite, simple, usually entire and rarely lobed. The flowers, however, there are some differences. Particularly beautiful and sometimes intensively fragrant flowers here have many climbing and looping species such as the Creeping Honeysuckle (Lonicera acuminata), the evergreen honeysuckle and Lonicera x heckrottii, an American cross between Lonicera x americana and Lonicera sempervirens. While the flowers stand in pairs on a stalk in upright shrubs, they form Blütenquirle in the climbing species. The color spectrum ranges from white, for example, true honeysuckle (Lonicera caprifolium), to yellow, as in the Blue Honeysuckle (Lonicera caerulea), to bright red (Lonicera x brownii 'Dropmore Scarlet').
The flowering time varies from species to species. Many honeysuckle flowers bloom in early summer, between May and June. But a honeysuckle thrills much earlier in the year with its creamy white to pale yellow flowers, namely, when flowering plants are actually still in short supply. All the greater is the surprise when a deciduous tree in the now bald garden drives flowers that also smell wonderful. The winter scent honeysuckle (Lonicera x purpusii) is such a winter bloomer and often even flowers from December, even if the main flowering time is more in February / March. In the rest of the garden season, the shrub is rather unremarkable. After flowering honeysuckle produce small red or black berries, some of which are mildly poisonous.
The Tatar honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica) becomes a shrubby shrub of three to four meters in height. The very robust woodland often drives already at the end of February and blooms from May to June
In addition to flower miracles, evergreen trees in the genus of honeysuckles play a special role - especially in winter, of course, when you are always happy about some color. And there hedge cherries have real trumps to offer: Among the low, shrubby representatives Evergreen honeysuckle (Lonicera nitida), also called hedge myrtle, and the slope myrtle (Lonicera pileata) have made a career as a ground cover. The similar looking shrubs tolerate heat, drought and root pressure.
Should it go higher, the climbing kinship offers itself. Among the approximately 180 species of the genus Lonicera, everyone knows from early summer rich flowering genuine honeysuckle, also Jelängerjelieber called, whose flowers exude an intense fragrance that attracts evening moths. During the winter months, you can appreciate the evergreen honeysuckle (Lonicera henryi), one of the few climbers that keeps their foliage year-round. The glossy dark green leaves indicate that the uncomplicated Schlinger like to be absonnig to shady.
Overall, honeysuckles are fairly undemanding as far as their location is concerned. Since they form very deep roots, they can - if they are once properly grown - good against root pressure of larger trees.Even summer dry seasons can hardly hurt them then. In principle, most honeysuckle prefer fresh to moist, well drained and humus soils. The light requirements vary from species to species - from sunny to shady. Therefore, you should inform yourself when buying a honeysuckle exactly about the claims.
The evergreen honeysuckle 'Maigrün' (Lonicera nitida) is a popular boxwood substitute because of its small, dark green leaves
The types of honeysuckle are very versatile because of their many different growth forms. The low, shrubby-growing representatives such as the slope myrtle and the evergreen honeysuckle can green spaces under trees. But they are also very good cut compatible and therefore do just as well in individual position in the discounts and in the planter. Evergreen honeysuckle cherries such as Lonicera nitida 'Maigrün' or 'Elegant' are also a good substitute for the boxwood, which is often infested with boxwood throats, because of their low growth height.
Climbing honeysuckles are among the most common species. Therefore, they prefer climbing aids in the form of trellises and supports in vertical orientation. If the plant shoots do not stop when they turn, they bend down. As they sometimes grow very fast, especially the evergreen species are very well suited, if you want to quickly grow a wall or a pergola.
Because of their intense fragrance you plant the winter scent honeysuckle best along paths or at the fence. Also nice is a corner that becomes the destination of the garden tour through the winter wonder. You can increase the flower effect with early spring flowers: crocuses, blue oysters and cyclamen form whole carpets under the shrub over the years.
Summer green, upright growing species such as the Tatarian honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica) grow over time to beautiful shrubs whose summer flowering is a special highlight. They stand out in their individual position as well as part of a mixed hedge. In order to have as much of the intense scent of the trees as possible, it is advisable to plant near the terrace or on a path.
As a vine plant, the honeysuckle as well as clematis or climbing rose is ideal for cozy corners
Immediately after flowering it is worth cutting the shrubby species. Cut down flowered shoots on a side shoot. Then in the next year the fresh shoots will produce more flowers. Older shrubs are screened by shortening about a quarter of the oldest shoots to the base.
The climbing plants under the honeysuckle have the tendency to lose ground from below. Cut every few years about a third of the oldest main shoots in the spring near the ground. In addition to this rejuvenation cut, in the summer you can shorten the stunted shoots that are too long for you, or shorten them occasionally. This recommendation applies to all summer-flowering honeysuckle varieties.
The fruits of the honeysuckle are depending on the species red or blue and slightly toxic
The propagation of honeysuckle varies from growth habit to growth habit. Climbing honeysuckle is best propagated by cuttings, which are cut in summer-green species in June, in evergreen in July by non-woody shoots. Evergreen, small-leaved species such as Lonicera nitida are also propagated by cuttings. The shrubs under the honeysuckle can also be multiplied by sticks. The best time for this is in winter, between December and February. If you only want a smaller amount of offspring from their climbing honeysuckle, then an increase over sinkers is also an option.
Diseases and pests
The honeysuckles are relatively resistant to diseases and pests. However, it is more common to infest with different aphids, which you recognize in the sometimes severely crippled leaves. Also rolled up or discolored leaves are an indication of an infestation. If you discover white wax wool on your plant, the Wolllaus is the cause. Both types of lice are best fought with a biologic preparation, as honeydew secreted by the lice attracts and otherwise affects many bees.