Thuja Smaragd Pflege: Alle Infos zu richtigem Standort, Gießen und Düngen-Botanicly

Thuja Smaragd Care: All information about the right location, watering and fertilizing

The history of Thuja (Occidentalis) Emerald

Thuja Emerald the name sounds so enchanting that you want to bring it home for this reason alone. The plant, also known as Thuja Occidentalis Emerald, Tree of Life Emerald or Occidental Tree of Life, is a plant species that belongs to the genus of Arborvitae (Thuja).

It is not without reason that the name Thuja was chosen for the plant. This comes from the Latin word Thuo = sacrifice. In the past, the Thuja Smaragd was used in sacrificial rituals. For the reason that it exudes a pleasant scent.

Even today, the leaves, twigs and bark of the plant are used in medicine to produce essential oils.

Appearance of Thuja Smaragd

The tree originally comes from North America, where it reaches a height of up to 20 meters. Since these trees are clearly too big for our gardens, there are now also smaller varieties that reach two to three meters after about ten years.

The narrow, conical and upward growth is characteristic of the tree. Its shiny green needles grow very close together, which makes the plant an ideal privacy screen, for example in the form of a hedge. The nice thing about the Thuja Smaragd: the evergreen hedge plant is very easy to care for.

Die richtige Thuja Pflege

The right Thuja Smaragd care: location, watering, fertilizing etc.

If a property describes the Thuja Smaragd, then it is easy to care for. Even if you don't have a green thumb, you can easily take care of the plant. Here you will find all important information about care.

Thuja Smaragd Location: Sunny to partially shaded

The plant location is also important for the not very demanding Thuja Smaragd care. A sunny to semi-shady place outdoors that is well ventilated is best. If it is too shady at its location, then it will not grow as densely and may then be less suitable as a privacy screen.

The tree of life is particularly effective behind roses or thrifts. A plus point with the plant: You can leave it outside in winter, as the frost usually cannot harm it. In some cases, the plants may occasionally develop brown spots. Don't let that worry you.

Tip: If you plant the Thuja Smaragd as a hedge, then you should keep a distance of about 40 to 50 centimeters when planting in the ground. This creates a beautifully even thuja hedge.

Thuja Emerald Earth - The tolerant tree

You can't really do anything wrong when choosing the soil, since the Thuja Smaragd thrives in almost all substrates. In extreme cases, even some species of the Thujen can grow in swamp-like soils. When it comes to pH, the tree is very tolerant as it can tolerate ranges from acidic to alkaline. If you can still maintain a pH between 6.0 and 8.0, then that would be ideal.

Tip: If the location of your Thuja Smaragd is very wet, pour some soil around the plant in the form of a mound. This will allow the water to drain away better.

Water Thuja Smaragd - The average water requirement of the plant

You should water the tree relatively often. Especially if your tree grows in a pot, it dries out faster and therefore has a higher water requirement than plants that grow directly in the bed. Potted plants also need good drainage in the form of holes.

You can tell if the soil is too dry when the needles turn slightly brown. The irrigation water should not be too cold and you should not pour it on the leaves.As with many plants, the best time for watering is either in the morning or in the evening. You should avoid watering in the hot midday sun due to the high level of evaporation.

As a rule, it is enough if you water your Thuja Smaragd about twice a week, maybe a little more in summer. In the winter months, a once-a-week water supply is sufficient.

Die richtige Thuja Pflege

Image source: Joshua Mayer from Madison, WI, USA, Thuja occidentalis foliage Wisconsin, CC BY-SA 2.0

Fertilize Thuja Smaragd - beware of over-fertilization

As already mentioned, the Thuja Smaragd care is very undemanding. Normally you don't have to fertilize the tree at all. However, it is advisable to add additional nutrients to small plants at the beginning.

Natural fertilizers such as compost, manure or leaf soil are best suited for fertilizing Thuja. The organic matter encourages root development and adds important nutrients to the soil.

Of course, commercial plant fertilizers, long-term fertilizers, mineral fertilizers or special fertilizers for thuja plants are also suitable. When buying, however, always make sure that there is an optimal ratio of phosphate, potash and nitrogen. The best time for fertilizing is spring and late summer.

Important: In winter you should avoid fertilizing at all.

Cutting Thuja Smaragd – The annual care cut

An annual, regular cut (pruning or care cut) helps your Thuja Smaragd grow nice and dense - e.g. as a privacy screen. The best time to prune thuja is early April to around September.

If you even prune your tree several times a year (1st pruning: early April, 2nd pruning: late June, 3rd pruning: late August), then it will grow back denser and bushier. In the cold winter months, some branches may die off during the frost. You can then simply cut them off in March.

Tip: If possible, you should not cut back newly planted trees in the first two years. This promotes better root formation.

Repot Thuja Emerald: Large vessels please

With potted plants, repotting is also very important during Thuja Smaragd care. The fast-rooting tree often fills the pot with its roots after two to three years. Then it's time for a larger vessel to encourage growth.

If the roots are already very matted when you remove the plant, then it makes sense to loosen them up carefully. After planting the tree in its new pot, press the soil firmly and water vigorously.

Tip: The width and height of the pot should be twice the size of the Thuja Smaragd root ball.

Propagating Thuja Smaragd - The cutting method

You can multiply your Thuja Smaragd with the help of cuttings and a little patience. To do this, you need to cut off branches from a mother plant, but it shouldn't be too old. For the propagation itself, however, the cracklings (small side branches) are used because they form roots more easily. You carefully tear this off the cut branch from top to bottom (so that a little bark remains hanging).

You can now put the small cracklings in a seed tray with potting soil. After that, you should water them with stale rainwater and put them in a shady and cool place outdoors. With the right location, your plant will be helped a lot.

Tip: Briefly remove the transparent hood every three days. So the small Thuja Smaragd plants are well ventilated.

Is the Thuja Smaragd poisonous?

As beautiful and easy to care for the Thuja Smaragd is, the essential oils in the fresh green tips of the leaves but also in the wood are sometimes toxic and can have health consequences for animals and humans Symptoms can range from stomach and intestinal cramps to vomiting and paralysis. So always keep your pets, such as dogs or cats, but also babies and small children away from the tree or make sure that they do not eat the plant parts.

Tip: It is also best to wear gloves when handling the plant to avoid a possible skin rash due to an allergy.

Tips for problems with the Thuja Smaragd

The most common mistake in Thuja Smaragd care is over-fertilization. In the worst case, this can lead to chlorosis. A yellowing of the leaves is a clear indication of this. It is therefore advisable to fertilize the tree less or not at all (if it is in a bed).


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