Last updated on January 25th, 2022
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Pyracantha ‘Golden Charmer’
An outstanding, compact and bushy evergreen shrub that offers year-round interest. This hardy evergreen shrub with sharp spiky branches and small dark glossy green leaves produces clusters of the most beautiful white flowers throughout the summer. These are followed by bright orange berries in late Autumn and Winter.
- Other name: Firethorn ‘Golden Charmer’
- Grows in exposed and sheltered areas
- Produces clusters of white flowers in summer and orange berries in late autumn and winter
- Ideal for growing as a wall shrub or border shrub
- The flowers attract bees and other insects in summer and the berries provide much needed food for birds in winter
- Seeds may cause mild stomach upsets if ingested
- Height and spread: 2.5 metres x 2.5 metres in 10 years
It will grow in most soil types including chalky, loamy, sandy and clay so will tolerate most soil types making it a good candidate for most areas of the garden. It will grow well in shadier parts of the garden where other shrubs would fail. This is usually against a north or east facing position where they might only get morning or afternoon sun.
It will also grow well in full sun, in a sheltered or exposed site. As described above, it will grow in most soil types that include chalk, loam, sand and clay but it must be well-drained.
Image credit: Wikimedia.org
Diseases to look out for
The Pyracantha Golden Charmer has good disease resistance to Pyracantha Scab which is a serious fungal disease. This is easy to spot because of the dark black spots that appear on the leaves and branches in early summer and the scabs on the berries in autumn. Remove all affected leaves and branches at the first signs and burn them (do not put them in the compost piles). 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 and it causes the leaves and flowers to turn black and become scorched. Remove all affected leaves, branches and flowers and burn them (do not put them in the compost piles). Spray plants with antibiotics streptomycin or terramycin to help prevent new infections to plants.
Watch out for aphids, caterpillars, wooly aphids and brown scale. Spray with a pesticide at first signs of pests.
They require very little pruning and are best grown against a wall and tied to a frame. They make excellent wall shrubs and just need pruning at the end of summer/early autumn to cut it back to a permanent framework and remove any disease, damaged or unwanted growth.
- Pyracantha are best propagated by taking semi-hardwood cuttings in Autumn.
- Mix seed and cutting compost 50/50 to make well-drained cutting compost to put your cutting into. Fill a container with holes in the bottom with the compost. A 5 litre container would be ideal.
- Take a cutting from healthy growth from the current year that is around 6-12 inches long. Cut just above the top bud at a slant and just below a bottom bud to form a cutting that is around 6-10 inches long.
- Remove around a third of the bottom leaves, dip the bottom of the cutting into rooting powder and make a small hole in the compost and insert the cutting. Ensure no leaves are touching the soil. You should be able to put 5 or 6 cuttings into one 5 litre container.
- Water well and place in a light place but not in direct sunlight. They should start to show roots in spring to summer and be ready to pot on into individual pots.