When to give water to the Sarcococca

Sarcococca is an evergreen bushy shrub with small flowers arranged in creamy white clusters that produce an incredible scent of honey and vanilla, and which are followed by the formation of shiny black or purple berries, which peep out from the dark green leaves in summer. It includes 11 species with very similar characteristics, all easy to grow in the garden, whose bushes can reach 2.5 / 3 meters in height. It is a very resistant plant to drought, so much so that it does not show particular signs of suffering in the summer months and does not need large watering except from time to time. These should not be missing, however, if you use dry granular fertilizer and the plant must be sprayed immediately after administration. Only when grown in pots and in apartments will it be necessary to pay attention to the humidity conditions of the soil, which must be constant and never excessive. The roots of the Sarcococca must be constantly kept humid with a discreet mulching when it is placed outdoors in a sunny area.

How to take care of the Sarcococca

Sarcococca is a rather neglected and not very widespread plant, yet with its winter blooms they can brighten the dull winter days and the intense scent that emanates from the bushes is a source of well-being. It is a rustic plant that does not need great care. In late winter or early spring it needs a light pruning to adjust the symmetry of the bush and compact it and, if desired, this plant lends itself very well to creating hedges with simple topiary forms, such as cubes. It prefers rich and organic soils but also adapts to poor or calcareous ones. The shrub is slow growing and reaches maturity around 10 years. The Sarcococca propagates by division of the rhizome or by woody cutting in autumn, depending on the species. Some of them, the rhizomatous ones in particular,

How and when to fertilize the Sarcococca

Although it is a very low maintenance plant, Sarcococca grows best when it is planted in greasy and well-drained soils to which a generous amount of compost, peat or manure has been added at the time of burying to mix with the existing soil in the planting hole. With such properly prepared soil there is no need for any subsequent fertilization. However, if there is a need to further feed the plant, for example if the soil is arid, it is preferable to do it in mid-February or early June. You can use the same fertilizers suitable for rhododendron by following the instructions on the label. Mulches are useful if the plant is exposed in too sunny areas, but they are not essential and can be applied every two years.

Exposure, diseases and possible remedies

La Sarcococca loves shady places with a north, north-east exposure. Therefore it performs very well also under tall trees or at the base of evergreen shrubs, taking advantage of their shade. This plant of Chinese origin thrives where many other plants languish and struggle and is therefore very useful to revive and enhance with its shiny and leathery leaves usually neglected places, such as the back entrance of the house or a bare service wall facing north. provided it is protected from currents. In the garden, its bushes can be used to hide an air conditioner or the corner dedicated to garbage containers. In large pots they look great under rhododendrons, oleanders and camellias. However, the leaves must be protected from snow and the roots from frost. The Sarcococca is rarely attacked by insects or diseases. From time to time it can be bothered by mites, a problem that can be easily solved through the horticultural oils on the market that quickly free the plant from infestation.

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