Forsythia: Everything About Flowering Time, Planting Time And Pruning

Forsythia already shows their most beautiful side at the beginning of the year. But to be able to marvel at its bloom, you have to be well informed about its requirements. Forsythia is very popular in gardens and parks because the golden-yellow flowering plant is a real eye-catcher in spring. From mid-March, the exotic shrub shines like no other at this time of the year.

The genus of forsythia includes a total of 13 species, with a hybrid of the species Forsythia × intermedia being mainly planted in this country. Although forsythia feels very comfortable in Germany, their original home is mainly in East Asia. Individual forsythia species also come from south-eastern Europe. So that the popular shrub feels at home in your garden, we present some tips on planting, flowering, and caring for forsythia.

Planting forsythia: planting time and location

Despite their exotic origin, the slightly poisonous forsythias do not make it difficult for hobby gardeners and are considered to be easy to care for. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when placing the plant in your garden.

Forsythia: the right time to plant

The optimal planting time for forsythia is in the spring after the last frosts. Then the plant can quickly get used to the new location. Basically, the shrub can also be planted out in autumn. However, the cold temperatures in winter can affect the plant and it takes longer to adapt to the location.

Forsythia: the right location

In principle, you can’t go wrong with the choice of location – the forsythia grows very well in both sunny and shady or partially shaded places. The yellow-flowering shrub also makes hardly any demands on the soil. Nevertheless, make sure that the soil in the selected location is not too chalky and that the plant gets enough water. Severe drought is one of the few criteria that even forsythia will give up on. To increase the water retention capacity, it is, therefore, worth incorporating compost and leaves before planting out. As with most plants, there should still be no waterlogging in the soil.

Forsythias grow in both sun and shade or partial shade

These tips will help you choose the right location and the right time to plant forsythia:

  • Planting time in the spring after the frosts
  • Sunny, partially shaded, or shady location
  • Moist and lime-poor soil
  • No waterlogging

Forsythia: flowering period and cutting

For most hobby gardeners, the forsythia is particularly popular because of its eye-catching flowers. But for it to appear so gorgeous every year, it is important to cut forsythia properly. We show you what to look out for.

Forsythia heyday

Depending on the weather, forsythia in Germany begins to bloom around mid-March and lasts until May, depending on the variety. The special thing about the shrub is the abundant flowering before the leaves shoot, which is why the forsythia already presents its yellow blossoms in early spring.

Pruning forsythia: Wrong time leads to loss of flower

For the desired flowering in spring, the right time to cut is crucial. The forsythia is an isotonic plant, which means that new shoots predominantly grow from the central shoot. The shrub’s popular flowers only emerge from new shoots from the previous year, so you should under no circumstances cut the forsythia like other trees in autumn. Otherwise, you have to expect that no or only very few flowers will form in spring. Ideally, cut the new branches off after flowering in spring. This gives the plant enough time over the summer to develop new shoots, which will then bloom again in the next spring.

The right time to cut is crucial in forsythia

By the way: Although the forsythia develops many bright flowers, it is of no interest to bees. The forsythia found in this country is almost all hybrid varieties that do not produce pollen and therefore do not attract bees. You can find the most bee-friendly perennials for your garden here.

These products are ideal for cutting your shrubs, hedges, and trees:

  • Felco Secateurs: Manual pruning, pruning, and gardening shears recommended for all types of cutting. In addition to plastic-coated handles, it has a precision adjustment system for the blade and anvil blade.
  • Felco fruit tree and secateurs: Robust fruit tree and secateurs with wire cutter, sap groove, and micrometer adjustment.
  • Gardena telescopic arm scissors: Practical secateurs for effortless cutting of tall trees and dense shrubs from the ground.

Maintain forsythia

Apart from the correct pruning in spring, the forsythia is considered to be a very easy-care shrub. Below are some tips on how to water the plant correctly and whether fertilization is necessary.

Forsythias do not need a particularly high level of care, which makes them very popular as plants in the garden. Basically, it can be said that you usually do not need to water the shrub – the rain in Germany is by far enough. Nevertheless, it is always worthwhile to work compost and leaves into the soil before planting out, so that the soil can better retain moisture. If the forsythia should still hang its head in particularly strong heat in summer, you can of course help with a little cool water.

Forsythia do not actually have to be poured

When it comes to fertilization, the same applies to watering: you can dispense with fertilizing apart from the one-off incorporation of compost. Forsythias also grow well in less nutrient-rich locations.

Here is a summary of everything you need to know about caring for forsythia:

  • Pouring is usually not necessary
  • Water only when it is extremely dry
  • No fertilization

Forsythia multiply by yourself

If you decide to plant forsythia in your garden, you can purchase one from the gardener or garden center. The sowing is rather unusual and takes much longer. A good way to grow several plants is to use cuttings and cuttings to propagate them. We present both variants and explain the difference.

Propagate forsythia by cuttings

Basically, it can be said that pulling cuttings is the easiest way to quickly multiply forsythia. Proceed as follows: In early summer, cut off several slightly woody shoots with a length of about 15 cm on the bush. Then first remove the flowers and the lower leaves. Then plant the cutting in the ground, preferably directly in the garden. To increase the chances of successful root formation, it makes sense to plant several cuttings at the same time.

Flowers and leaves should be removed from a forsythia cutting

Increase forsythia with offshoots

Another simple method of propagation is the formation of offshoots (also called subsidence). In contrast to cuttings, in forsythia no shoots are cut off, but (as the name suggests) shoots are bent to the ground. Pick out long shoots and dig them into a small groove in the ground. The end of the instinct should look out of the earth again. Make sure that there is enough soil on the branch. Before digging in, cut light notches in the bark of the branch – new cuttings will develop from this over the course of a year. After about a year, you can then separate the new offshoots and plant them again.

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