Pyracantha rogersiana growing guide, pruning and planting tips
Pyracantha rogersiana (Asian Firethorn)
Originating from Western China, Pyracantha rogersiana is a drought resistant, evergreen and bushy shrub that is ideal for forming a hedge or as a border/wall shrub. The arching branches produce creamy-white flowers in spring followed by orange/red berries in autumn which provide food for many species of wildlife and birds.
This evergreen shrub has oblong leaves which are around 4cm long and spiky branches, so it often makes a good deterrent hedge for protecting your property.
- Common name: Asian firethorn.
- Family: Rosaceae.
- Evergreen arching branches.
- Creamy-white flowers in spring, followed by red/orange berries in autumn.
- Height and spread over 10 years: 4 metres x 4 metres.
- Toxicity: Seeds will cause mild stomach upsets if ingested.
- Drought resistant.
- Low maintenance shrub.
- Pyracantha ‘Flava’ has been awarded the RHS ‘Award of Garden Merit’.
Image Source wikipedia.org
Where to plant
Pyracantha is a versatile shrub that grows well in most positions and is tolerant to pollution. They will grow well in any PH level and soil type including chalk, loam, sand and clay in moist soil but ensure it is well-drained. They will thrive in full sun or semi-shade, in sheltered or exposed sites. Ideal for forming hedges and screens it also grows well in seaside areas. It is a good shrub for planting in cottage gardens against a wall or trellis frame work.
Pyracantha are very easy to maintain and are a good low maintenance shrub. Hedging should be pruned twice a year in summer and autumn with a good pair of secateurs to keep to a formal shape. Informal hedges can be pruned to remove any unwanted branches. Remove old berry trusses in spring and cut back any branches to a permanent framework in autumn as well as removing any diseased, damaged or unwanted growth.
Pyracantha are very easy to propagate by a taking semi-hardwood cutting in summer or a hardwood cutting in autumn.
Pests to watch out for
Watch out for aphids, caterpillars, woolly aphids and brown scale. Check in spring and use a garden sprayer to spray with a pesticide at the first signs of pests.
Diseases to watch out for
Watch out for Pyracantha Scab which is a serious fungal disease. The dark black spots that appear on the leaves and branches in early summer are easy to spot and look out for the scabs on the berries in autumn. Remove all affected leaves and branches at the first signs and burn them (do not place on the compost pile). It is also important to also remove any fallen leaves.
Fireblight is a systemic disease and is spread by pests, aphids and birds. It can be a problem with all pyracantha cultivars that causes the leaves and flowers to turn black and scorched. Remove all affected leaves, branches and flowers and burn them. Spray plants with antibiotics streptomycin or terramycin to help prevent new infections to plants.