General Discussion:

berry drop on firethorn (pyracanthus)

Messages posted to thread:

Naomi02-Jan-05 03:08 PM EST 6   
Dan30-Jan-05 07:11 AM EST 5a   

Subject: berry drop on firethorn (pyracanthus)
From: Naomi
Zone: 6
Date: 02-Jan-05 03:08 PM EST

I have a Yukon Belle firethorn that I planted in the spring 2003. It grew vigourously both years and had lots of flowers last spring but except for a very few clusters, the berries never really formed-dropping very early on. It is planted on the southeast side of a wood fence where it gets only a small amount of sun as it is shaded not just by the fence but also by the tall cedar hedge that's about ten feet away from it. The soil is typical subdivision ie a few inches of topsoil over hardpan clay but I dug it up as thoroughly as I could and put in lots of peatmoss,some sand and cow manure when I planted it. I think it gets enough water as I laid down a soaker hose. I was wondering whether it is the lack of sun that caused the berries to drop off before maturing. Any suggestions?

Subject: RE: berry drop on firethorn (pyracanthus)
From: Dan (
Zone: 5a
Date: 30-Jan-05 07:11 AM EST

Hi Naomi, Just noticed you hadn't received any responses. I hope this helps a bit. I see a few areas to discuss. Firethorn doesn't really like an acid soil. I don't think you used too much peat moss but I probably wouldn't want to add anymore. The cedar hedge nearby will provide a lot of competition for nutrients. Keep that in mind once your bush's root begin to interact with the cedar's. Firethorn will do well in the shade but really prefers full sun to get the best berry crop. Also, this plant likes relatively well-drained soil so if you have mulch, then mother nature should normally provide enough moisture. Firethorn doesn't like to have its roots disturbed so the next you amend the soi with either compost or manure, just lay it on top of the ground and let the worms work it down. If you mulch, then rake back the mulch, apply the compost, and replace the mulch. Keep on top of pruning while its still relatively small. Err on the sparse side as this plant can get very dense. Your most difficult challenge will be the shade cast by the cedar. Hope this helps a bit.

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