Caring for the cornelian hedge properly and also benefiting from it in terms of health!

Caring for the cornelian hedge properly and also benefiting from - Caring for the cornelian hedge properly and also benefiting from it in terms of health!

You have a great garden that means a lot to you. They enjoy the warm rays of sunshine, like to work in the garden and look forward to the flowering plants and later to the tasty fruits. It’s your little outdoor paradise. But something is still missing. Would you like more privacy with an easy-care but lively privacy screen? Well then, a cornelian hedge would probably be right for you. Stay with us and learn more about this remarkable and somewhat forgotten plant!

Cornus cherries are real all-rounders, and not just in the garden

Caring for the cornelian hedge properly and also benefiting from - Caring for the cornelian hedge properly and also benefiting from it in terms of health!

Cornelian cherry – a valuable plant returns!

The Cornelian Cherry (Cornus mas) is a slow to moderate growing shrub or small tree that can reach a height of 6-7 meters unpruned. The plant belongs to the dogwood (Cornaceae) family, the use of which has been documented for 7,000 years in antiquity. The genus is native to central and southern Europe and is distributed as far as western Asia. The word cornus is Latin for horn, which is fitting given the strength and density of the shrub. Its common name refers to the bright red cherry-like fruit that looks like the semi-precious stone carnelian.

Cornelian cherries are among the first early bloomers in this country too

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While the cornus is primarily known as an ornamental plant that shows its yellow flowers in early spring, it is actually worth much more. Its sour, cherry-like fruits are already part of a healthy diet for many people. Incidentally, the early flowers are a good forage plant for honey and wild bees. The ripe fruits as well as a cornel hedge in general attracts birds and also offers other small animals a safe haven.

The plant is therefore very well suited for a wild hedge

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Why are cornel cherries so healthy?

The fruits of the cornel are sweet and sour when fully ripe and can be harvested on bushes from the age of 4. These are only fully ripe when they almost fall off the bush. While they don’t store well fresh, they can be easily dried. Cornelian cherries have antioxidant, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects. They are also particularly recommended for strengthening the nervous system. The ripe fruits are a great source of potassium and also contain other minerals such as copper, zinc and manganese. The best way to reap the benefits of cornelian cherries is to consume them raw and fresh. Nevertheless, a good part of the healthy ingredients are retained in the dried fruits as well as in jams, sauces and juices.

When preparing your cornel jam, use xylitol or stevia instead of sugar

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Caring for cornel hedges properly

As already mentioned, the Cornelian cherry is an easy-care, cold-resistant plant that also thrives in Germany. It requires full sun to part shade and prefers moist, organically rich soil with a pH of 5.5-7.5. However, the plant also tolerates clay soils. It is partially self-fertile, but will produce more fruit when cross-pollinated with another variety.

You can see the good care of the hedge

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If you plant a cornel hedge, it is better to keep about 3 meters between the plants. Regular mulching promotes better root growth and higher drought tolerance. There are many cultivated varieties available for purchase that give larger, tastier fruit and come in both red and yellow fruit coloring.

However, the red fruits are much more popular and preferred

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Cut cornel hedge

This shrub tends to produce multiple main shoots. To control the size, you should regularly cut away the runners that appear. To raise the plant as a small tree, select a main shoot as a trunk and then cut off side shoots. The best time for a radical pruning is just after the flowers have faded in spring. But be aware that in most cases you will then lose the fruit for this time of year.

In the case of a radical cut, please note the cutting ban between March and September!

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Propagating cornel cherries

The cornelian cherry can be propagated by seeds and softwood cuttings. Seeds need between 90-120 days of warm moist stratification followed by 90-120 days of cold stratification. For cuttings, the soil should be moderately moist. The so-called greenwood cuttings in July or August are more effective than dormant hardwood cuttings.

Common pests and diseases in cornelian cherries

When grown and cared for in the right conditions, the shrubs have few problems with disease or pests. While not entirely immune to the dogwood anthracnose disease that afflicts many species of dogwood, some varieties are significantly more resistant to it.

Some types of moss can also be a plague for your cornelian cherries

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However, the low-maintenance reputation is lost if a cornelian dogwood becomes unhealthy. Stressed plants can also be susceptible to various borers. Leaf miner, gall midge and scales can also become more than cosmetic problems with cornelian cherries. Other possible disease problems include leaf spot, crown canker, root rot, powdery mildew and leaf blight. Again, trees that are stressed or planted in unfavorable conditions are the most vulnerable.

With good care, cornelian cherries thank you with fresh blossoms, healthy fruits and pretty foliage

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Take care of your cornelian cherry hedge in a loving and species-appropriate manner and enjoy everything that it gives back to you. We wish you a quiet and refreshing garden time and many great moments in your outdoor paradise!

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