Planting and cultivating heather - That's how it's done


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Whether in the tub, on the bed or on the balcony - heather is a plant that grows almost everywhere. But only if you plant and care for them properly.

Heather is very robust

Some call it heather, the other Erika - heath can be found all over the world, because it cope with almost any climate. Even in our latitudes, the Erika is not only popular as a grave jewelry, it can also be used very versatile in garden design. On top of that, you can even create a whole heather garden.

However, this plant is not only popular because of its appearance. It is more likely because the heather is hardy, so that gardeners in the cold season hardly have to expect losses. Meanwhile, there is also a large variety of colors to choose from. In addition to the typical purple, there are also flowers in bright green, white, purple and old rose.

Framing the garden with heather

The design possibilities with heather are almost inexhaustible. So you can, for example, Create a uniform bed with a single variety and color. However, it looks much more interesting if you combine different flower colors. However, you should not mix the varieties indiscriminately, but plant individual groups, each with one variety and 10 to 12 copies. If you then choose varieties with different flowering periods, you will have flowering heather almost all year round.

Too symmetrical you should not make the arrangement, because a certain irregularities provides for the better effects. In between, you can place large stones or tree roots, or set accents with small hills. Incidentally, blueberries, rhododendrons and azaleas are particularly good with heather, because they all like the same soil. In addition, broom, various ornamental grasses and small conifers for the design of a heather garden to offer.

The ideal location for the heather

➤ Location:

The heath can sit quietly in the full sun. Especially here they bring out the most beautiful, colorful flowers. But even if you choose a place in partial shade, the heather will prosper well. Dark, shady locations, however, are not suitable, because then the plants form hardly any flowers and also remain slender.

➤ Soil quality:

Normally, the Erika thrives on any surface. But that does not mean that it grows equally lush on every floor and convinces with full splendor. Optimal for the heather is an acidic soil (pH 4.5 to 6.5), which is well moistened. The soil should be as loose, humus and nutrient-rich, ideally also a bit sandy.

If the soil of the garden is very calcareous, you can improve it for the heather with some bone meal. Many soils are also a bit too heavy for these plants. Therefore, it should be well loosened before planting, enrich with some peat soil, peat, gravel or sand and dig well. The profound digging is also well suited to removing weeds that could deprive the plants of nutrients and light. If you then apply another two centimeters thick layer of bark mulch to the ground, then you have created the best conditions for a magnificently growing Erika.

Plant heather properly

➤ Planting time:

In the heather, a distinction is made between winter heather and summer heather, that is, depending on when they have their heyday. All species, however, are perennial, survive the winter and can basically be planted all year round. However, autumn and spring are best suited for planting. March / April / May or September / October / November are therefore ideal planting times.

➤ Planting distance:

So that each plant gets enough light, you must not put it too close together. The distance between the individual plants should therefore be at least 20 centimeters, better 30 centimeters. Depending on the size of the variety, it is roughly expected that 8 to 20 plants will grow on one square meter.

➤ Planting:

First you have to loosen up the area with a rake and then dig out the appropriate planting holes. When setting, you must then make sure that the root ball is completely covered with earth up to the top edge and that also after setting the soil. Then replenish the planting hole with soil, press it firmly and water the plants abundantly. In order for a quick rooting, you have to water regularly in the period after planting, especially in times of high heat and prolonged drought in summer.

Maintain heather properly

Of course, if you want to enjoy the heather for a long time and you always enchant them with their luxuriant growth, then you also have to do something for the care, even if they are basically very easy-care plants.

➤ Section:

The cut of the Erika is best done in the spring. The summer heather will then drive out stronger again. But even when the flowering time is over, the heather tolerates a strong pruning. Not only the growth is stimulated by the pruning, it is also prevented a Verkahlen in the lower area. Of course, there are varieties that do not grow so abundantly, in these the pruning is then correspondingly weaker.

➤ Casting:

You always have to keep the soil moist. Even in winter he must never completely dry out. To do this, you can apply a mulch layer of foliage, or you can use a special peat soil substrate that moisturizes.

➤ Fertilize:

During growth, you should use a mineral or organic fertilizer such as horn shavings. But even when planting you can fertilize the Erika for the first time. The next time after the pruning. During the winter months, however, you should refrain from fertilizing the heather.

➤ Fight haymeat mushroom:

Compared to pests and diseases, the heather is quite robust. Only the Hallimasch mushroom can cause great damage to the summer heather. If the white, fan-shaped fungus spreads on the bark of the plant, the heath usually dies off. You must then remove the heather as soon as possible. In addition, you must then also replace the soil at this point to prevent further spread of the fungus.

Video Board: Cultivating heather.

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