Thuja (Thyia): peculiarities and essential characteristics

The “Thuja” is a beautiful and imposing tree that makes our gardens unique, it has particularly robust foliage and its wood has an aromatic scent. There are different species, “shrubby” and “evergreen” or “arboreal”, different in physiognomy but always very beautiful. It can grow very tall, reaching 60 meters in height. The qualities that, on the other hand, reach a smaller and more contained height are the “Thuja occidentalis” or “Thuja orientalis” which have purely ornamental purposes. The woody fruits that this plant produces do not exceed 2 cm, are in the shape of a spheroidal pinecone, divided into very flat sections, in the center of which there is a pointed protrusion of light green or dark blue, tending to black. It has a particular pyramid-shaped crown,

The “Thuja”: other characteristics, how and where it is grown, watering, pruning

The “thuja” prefers very sunny places even if it easily tolerates shady places in any case, if you want the plant to develop well, it is necessary to expose it to at least four hours of sun a day. It does not fear colder and harsh temperatures but absolutely cannot stand places on the sea due to the brackish air. The plant needs acid soil and fertilization with “organic substances”. It should be pruned regularly and never drastically. It must be watered with a certain regularity when it is still young, as an adult it bears the long periods of dryness and drought for which the rains are sufficient. The “thuja” cannot withstand the stagnation of water, to avoid this problem it is necessary to mix “sand” or “pumice” to the ground before planting it. Clayey soils are also excellent for her.

Thuja Occidentalis: the most widespread species in our area

The “Thuja” is certainly one of the most present trees in our gardens. There are 5 species and the most widespread in our area is certainly the “Thuja occidentalis” or “American tuia” (or white cedar). It can reach 20 meters in height and assume a conical shape. The very robust leaves are “scaly”, very shiny and very small, and have a greenish-yellow color. The color of the bark is orange-brown. They have a very balsamic scent. The “male” flowers are reddish, the “female” ones are yellowish-brown. The fruits are elongated conical in shape, with a greenish-gray color that turns brown when ripe. Comes from North America, where there are very calcareous soils and it was one of the first plants to be exported from this country. If the “Thuja” has the opportunity to grow, respecting its real needs, it turns out to be a very tenacious and long-lasting tree.

La Thuja: how to be able to fight diseases and parasites

The “Thuja” is usually attacked by mites and aphids, and fears the “fire blight”. It is difficult to cure it given the structure of the leaves which does not allow to intervene adequately. Therefore, the motto is in force, “better to be safe than sorry”, so it is necessary to do prevention during the colder season, in order to always keep it in good health. In the event that the plant becomes ill, it is possible to cure it by administering “systematic pesticides”. In the case of poorly draining soil, it is advisable to dilute granules of “fosetil aluminum” in the water, in order to avoid pathologies that could be lethal for the plant. It can be affected by the “Didymascella thujina” fungus when the plant is still young. This possibility is countered, growing Thuja seedlings in separate “nurseries”. Both ladybugs and the “conifer” spider can pose a real danger to this tree.

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