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Vigorous in growth and setting seed, Amur honeysuckle is a tough and cold hardy shrub with fragrant white-becoming-yellow blossoms followed by attractive red fruits. An upright but spreading to fountain-shaped deciduous shrub, it is native to China (Manchuria) to Korea and Japan. In fertile soils with good moisture this plant reliably becomes invasive, especially as hungry songbirds quickly eat and spread the seeds every year. Thus, Amur honeysuckle is regarded as invasive shrub for cold region landscapes.
Usually multi-trunked, this shrub attains a small tree-like shape with spreading and arching branches. Its bark is grayish tan and exfoliates. The dark green leaves are arranged in pairs on the stems and are oval to lance-like. In early summer, two-lipped tubular white flowers are borne on the stems, and age to yellow. They are fragrant and attract insects for their effective pollination. Afterwards scores of attractive small red to dark red berries lines the branches and are quickly eaten by birds.
Amur honeysuckle is adaptable to most soil types that have fertility and have good drainage. Vigorous and readily self-sowing, this shrub is not recommended for general landscape use as it frequently escapes cultivation. Favored uses may only be for hillside stabilization or difficult urban sites where most other greenery cannot flourish.
Genus - Lonicera
Species - Maackii
Variety - Podocarpa
Common name - Amur Honeysuckle
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 2 - 8
Height - 10'-15' / 3 - 5 m
Spread - 10'-15' / 3 - 5 m
Plant type - Shrub
Vegetation type - Deciduous
Exposure - Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade
Growth rate - Fast
Soil PH - Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Soil type - Clay, Loam, Well Drained
Water requirements - Drought tolerant, average water
Bloom season - Late Spring, Early Summer
Leaf / Flower color - Green, Dark Green / White, Light Yellow, Ivory
1. Soak seeds for 24 hours in warm water. Place seeds in paper towels that have been a little bit wet and wrung out. Fold towel up, put in a baggie, and store in the refrigerator for the cold period (60 days).Check the paper towel once a week to make sure it is moist.
2. Fill small seeding pots or a seeding tray with commercial potting soil. This type of soil is guaranteed to be disease and seed free. Leave about a half inch clear at the top of the containers.
3. Push a stratified seed into each seeding pot or tray cell, just below the surface of the soil. Push soil over the seed hole.
4. Spray water over each pot to moisten the soil. Place the pots onto a tray. Cover the pots with a sheet of plastic wrap.
5. Place the seed pot tray in front of a sunny window. Remove the plastic wrap and spray the seeded soil every day. Do not overwater them, creating mud.
6. Remove the plastic wrap when germination begins in two to six weeks. Continue to keep the soil moist.
7. Transplant the seedlings when they reach a height of 2 to 3 inches and the last frost has passed in early spring in your location.
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