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Sweet cherry, the first of the stone fruit crops, pleases with fruiting in summer cottages. It often surpasses cherries in taste and has a lot of fans. Cherries of the Regina variety are the work of German breeders. It appeared in Russia at the end of the last century and is rapidly gaining popularity. Consider the characteristics, advantages and features of growing a favorite cherry variety.
How the variety is bred
The parents of cherries were two popular varieties - Schneider late and Roubet. The selection was carried out in Germany. Its remarkable taste was quickly appreciated in Europe, and Regina is widely grown on an industrial scale.
Photo and description
The German cherry variety is successfully cultivated in warm regions of the country up to the Middle Volga region. This is ensured by two important qualities of Regina - resistance to frost and disease. The tree grows up to 3.5-4 meters, has a crown of medium branching and density.
Regina is classified as an unpretentious variety, therefore, it is successfully grown on large farms. Fruit flowering and ripening occurs annually. The tree blooms at the end of May, the fruits ripen at the end of July, Regina is a late-ripening variety that completes the cherry season.
Sweet cherries are stored on the tree for a long time, which is important for busy summer residents, lie well and are transported without loss of taste. Fruits do not run out of juice, do not become wet.
The list of the variety's advantages is quite impressive:
- taste, beauty and decorativeness of fruits;
- long storage without loss of quality, ensured by dry separation;
- annual fruiting of cherries;
- ripe fruits remain on the tree for up to 2 weeks.
We also note the properties of this cherry variety that are very relevant for Russia - winter hardiness and non-susceptibility to fungal diseases.
The only drawback of Regina's gardeners is the need to plant a pollinator, without which it will not be possible to get fruits.
Cherry buds develop late, tolerate frost well at any stage of development. Sawflies, which can severely harm the tree, are especially dangerous for the kidneys.
Leaf and flower
Leaves of traditional shape - ellipse, slightly pointed end. Serrated edges. The surface of the plate is glossy and shiny.
Flowers are collected in 2-3 pieces, petals are white, cherry blossoms are abundant and friendly.
Fruits are round-heart-shaped, evenly and equally colored.
The average weight of cherries is 8.5 grams; when grown in good conditions, they reach 10-11 grams.
The height of the fruit is slightly more than the width - 2.5-3.2 centimeters.
The diameter of the cherry is 2.5-3.2 centimeters.
The thickness of the fruit pulp depends on the conditions of care and is 0.5-0.9 centimeters.
Exquisite dark cherry color, shiny glossy skin attract attention to large fruits. The pulp is slightly lighter than the cherry shell.
The stalk leaves the fruit easily, does not take the pulp with it, so the berries are stored for a long time.
The stone is medium in size, easily separated from the pulp.
The flesh of the berries is dense, without excess juice, gristly. Included in the bigarro class.
Regina's taste is close to ideal - score 4.8-5 points. Sweet cherry has a slightly sour taste.
Content of nutrients
Regina demonstrates all the best qualities of sweet cherry. The berries contain:
- carbohydrates - up to 16%;
- fructose, sucrose;
- vitamins B, C, E;
- potassium, iodine, iron, calcium.
There are no fats in the fruits, the content of pectins is high.
Tree height and growth rate
The tree grows up to 3-4 meters, adding up to 50 centimeters annually. Shoots grow upward, which facilitates crown formation.
Flowering and ripening period
Regina begins to bloom when most of her relatives have faded long ago - in mid-late May. Also, the fruits begin to sing late - in mid-late July. With a long preservation of fruits, fresh cherries can be eaten most of August.
The first cherry harvest is removed for 3-4 years. A wonderful property of Regina is the annual flowering and fruiting, not depending on the vagaries of the weather. An adult tree produces up to 40 kilograms of fruit.
Dry peel allows the fruit to remain firm and intact for up to 3 weeks. The crop lays well in storage and transfers transportation to any distance without losing quality. The dense pulp does not flow, the skin is not injured.
For successful development at all stages of the growing season, sweet cherry needs a sufficient amount of moisture. The variety is not classified as drought-resistant. Watering - monthly, the soil layer at the roots should be free of cracks and obvious signs of drying out. When the soil dries up after watering, it is loosened.
A healthy tree can withstand frosts down to -25 °, which makes Regina popular and in demand among gardeners.
Regina is considered one of the most resistant cherry varieties. In wet, cloudy weather, watering is reduced to avoid rot on the fruits.
Fruit use is universal:
- the best taste is fresh until mid-August;
- preparation of desserts;
- compotes and other types of preservation.
Keeping quality, preservation of taste after transportation and long-term storage make the variety popular in agricultural farms for industrial cultivation.
Basic soil requirements
Sweet cherry grows well on loamy and sandy loam soils. When preparing the site for planting, the soil is enriched to this state. Clay is added to sandy soils, it retains moisture well. Clay soil is combined with river sand for relief and looseness.
Any type of soil must be fertilized, mixed with organic matter to provide the seedling with nutrition. It is recommended to prepare the soil in advance, 1-2 years in advance, so that the land acquires fertile properties.
When planting, it is important to strictly observe all the requirements so that the seedling quickly grows and develops fully.
Agronomists recommend choosing seedlings of local selection, better adapted to the characteristics of the region. It is better to buy cherries in a nursery than in street markets or prescribe them over the Internet.
Consider how to choose a cherry seedling.
A healthy root will ensure quick survival and proper nutrition of the plant. Root system requirements:
- 3 large roots with small branches;
- lack of rot, creases;
- white and juicy on the cut;
- elastic - bend, not break.
The root should be moist, covered with earth. When transporting it, cover it with a damp cloth.
The size of the seedling is 1-1.5 meters. The trunk is even, without cracks, 3-5 branches more than 30 centimeters long. The kidneys are whole and alive.
Young seedlings 1-2 years old take root best of all.
Important: you should not buy seedlings older than 3 years.
Only grafted seedlings provide the cherry variety. Wilds grow from Regina's bone. The vaccination site is healthy, whole, without decay or cracks.
Sweet cherries are planted in spring and autumn. The term depends on the climatic characteristics of the region and the availability of seedlings on the market. In any season, it is important to plant Regina on time so that the seedling develops in favorable conditions, takes root and grows.
Before winter, cherries are planted in warm regions with non-severe winters and hot summers.
Pros of autumn planting:
- the growing season is completed, all the forces of the cherry go to rooting;
- wet autumn reduces the need for watering;
- in spring, a tree rooted during the winter tolerates heat more easily and suffers less from pests.
In hot regions, spring plantings often die due to high soil temperatures and lack of moisture.
A sudden cold snap often destroys young plants. Poor rooting leads to the fact that cherries cannot survive a cold winter with little snow and die. The invasion of rodents often destroys young plantings in summer cottages.
Cherries are planted in spring in most regions of the country. Cold winters are dangerous for weak autumn seedlings - they do not have time to take root and mature.
During the warm spring-summer season, the seedling manages to grow roots and harden in the soil. He has almost six months for this. Timely watering can be used to overcome the influence of the dry period. Summer residents can fight diseases and pests by watching cherries all summer.
In addition to growing roots, the seedling must ensure the growth of branches, leaves, which requires a lot of strength from it. Young plants are often attacked by pests that prefer immature juicy young growth. Summer residents need to constantly monitor the condition of the seedling - protect it from insects, prevent drying out and slowing down the growing season.
The autumn selection of seedlings is always greater, many gardeners acquire cherries at this time, add them in drops, and plant them in the spring.
Heat-loving cherries require a lot of sun and light. It is important to provide it with illumination by choosing a convenient site. Site requirements:
- sunny area - south or west;
- no stagnant water, low groundwater flow - 2 meters or more;
- high place without accumulation of fog.
Drafts and cold winds slow down growth, cherries without sun become sour, less juicy and aromatic. It is important to remember that the crown needs ventilation to protect it from rot and harmful insects, therefore, a tree is not planted in closed corners.
We also note a pleasant neighborhood for cherries - cherries, plums, pollinating cherries. It is not recommended to grow apples, pears, gooseberries, raspberries next to Regina.
Terms of preparation of a planting pit for cherries:
- for spring - in autumn;
- for autumn planting - 2-3 weeks.
For a seedling, a pit is prepared with a depth of 60-70 centimeters and a width of 100 centimeters. The upper part of the removed soil is set aside and a soil mixture is prepared from it. The composition of the mixture is soil, humus (2 buckets), complex (phosphorus, potassium) mineral fertilizer, ash.
The prepared soil is poured with a slide to the bottom of the pit, and the future support for the cherries is strengthened in it.
Before planting, the roots of Regina's sapling are pruned, immersed in water mixed with growth stimulants (Zircon, Kornevin).
The seedling is placed on a mound in a hole so that the grafting site remains above the soil surface. The earth is added in layers, carefully rammed so that no voids are formed. Having filled up the hole by half, pour in 5-10 liters of water and wait for subsidence.
The pit is completely filled, the earth is rammed, a circle is formed and 2 buckets of water are poured in. The surface of the root circle is mulched.
Almost the only drawback of Regina is the obligatory planting of pollinators near the tree. The main difficulty is that certain varieties are needed that bloom at the same time. The following cherry and cherry varieties are recommended.
Note that the tree need not be planted on purpose. Close enough to grow a suitable culture from the neighbors. They also use the grafting with the recommended variety on Regina or any neighboring tree.
Cherry is one of Regina's parents. A very high-yielding variety, the fruits are quite sour.
A well-known pollinator of many varieties. Sam fruit has a slightly bitter taste. Does not crack in any weather.
An excellent variety with red-pink fruit pulp, cherries - up to 7 grams, sweet and juicy.
The tree grows almost without side shoots. Insulation is required for the winter for many regions. The fruits are sweet and large.
The variety is very productive, the trees are tall, the crown is thickened. Fruits are sweet, juicy, up to 6 grams. The bone does not come off.
Fruits are slightly flattened, weight - up to 8 grams. The color of the fruit is carmine.
Not a winter-hardy cherry variety, it grows well only in warm regions. Berries are juicy, with a pronounced aroma, they remain on the tree for a long time.
They are planted for pollination of Regina at a distance of 3 meters.
Large fruits of very dark color, juicy, conical shape. The hard, dense bark protects the tree from fungal diseases.
Cherry Coral blooms late, short. The pulp is sweet, juicy with a wine flavor. Lotovka (Lutovka) - a variety of cherries, they are practically not used fresh, intended for processing.
The cherry variety shows good yield results only in warm regions. Does not possess high winter hardiness.
Cherry variety with very dense red flesh, fruit size - up to 10 grams.
A tree with a powerful crown, it will take up a lot of space on the site. Fruits - up to 10 grams with light red, slightly sour, aromatic pulp.
Proper care not only increases yields, but also improves the taste and size of the fruit, making them sweeter and juicier.
Cherry Regina is not drought-resistant, requires regular watering. Their scheme is adjusted depending on humidity and amount of precipitation. In a damp summer, the frequency is reduced, water stagnation is not allowed.
The following standards are recommended:
- young tree - 30 liters once a month;
- adult, fruiting - 50-60 liters at least 3 times per season.
The first watering is carried out during the opening of the kidneys, then according to the scheme. It is important to adjust the timing and amount of water depending on the specifics of the weather. With dry summer, watering is increased, the soil in the circle is mulched to retain moisture for the roots.
Watering is stopped 3 weeks before harvesting so that the fruits do not crack and become sour.
It is important to loosen the soil in time and exterminate weeds, cherries do not like them. In order not to damage the roots, a pitchfork or a hand cultivator is used for loosening.
During the first year, Regina feeds on the fertilizers applied during planting, and does not need additional feeding. Nitrogen fertilizers are applied in a small dose (120 grams per circle) in the second year. Urea will provide green mass growth and enhanced vegetation.
From the 3rd year, regular feeding begins:
- humus - every 2-3 years;
- superphosphate and potassium salt - annually, in the spring.
The trunk circle is increased as the crown grows (by 50 centimeters per year). Fertilizers are applied dry, burying along the edge of the circle, or in the form of a solution with watering. Sweet cherry loves feeding with ash and dolomite flour.
At a young age, all incorrectly growing young shoots are removed from cherries. Throughout life, damaged, broken branches are cut. You should not thicken the crown, this leads to a loss of fruit quality.
The top is of decisive importance, its condition is monitored especially. When stronger branches appear, the main conductor is replaced to avoid competition. Old branches (7-8 years old) are shortened, rejuvenating the cherry and stimulating the growth of young shoots.
Preparing for winter
Regina's frost resistance protects the tree from low temperatures. A young cherry seedling, especially planted in spring, needs autumn preparation for the cold. The main stages of pre-winter preparation:
- Remove the old mulch. They clean the trunk of damaged bark, whitewash.
- The soil in the circle is deeply dug, the cherries are watered.
- Fertilizers are applied 2 weeks before the real cold snap.
- The soil around the cherries is covered with a layer of mulch of 20 centimeters.
- The trunk of young seedlings is insulated with sacking.
- A mesh or spruce branches serve as protection against rodents.
If there is a lack of snow, it is poured manually.
Important: you can only cover the trunk in winter with breathable materials, the film is not used.
Prevention of diseases and pests
Cherry Regina is genetically well protected from fungal diseases, but with high humidity and lack of ventilation, it can suffer from rot and viral infections.
Gray mold is a fungal infection that often affects fruits in wet summers. Sick cherries must be removed from the tree, collected from the ground and disposed of. The disease is expressed in fruit decay and monilial burn (damage to parts of the trunk).
For treatment, biological products (Fitosporin, Fitolavin) and chemicals (Topsin M, iron vitriol, Kuprozan) are used.
So called gum flow - the outflow of juice caused by adverse conditions. For treatment, the removal of frozen juice, treatment with copper sulfate is used.
Viral disease with the defeat of cherry leaves. Yellow stripes appear on the plates along the veins, they twist and fall off. There is no cure for a viral disease. The tree is most often uprooted and destroyed.
The pest eats any plants, can penetrate cherries from the neighboring forest and completely ruin all plantings. In the fall, they examine the cherries, rip off all the clutches of eggs. Insecticide treatment - Chlorofos, Metaphos.
Small insects settle on the lower part of the foliage and in the forks of the trunk. The foliage becomes sticky, covered with bloom, on which dust settles. Spark, Commander is used to fight. It is especially important to deal with ants, with which aphids have common vital interests.
Cherry pipe runner
Adult beetles eat ovaries and leaves, larvae penetrate the bones and destroy the fruit. The taste of even the surviving fruits is lost. It is important to treat the cherries with insecticides (Aktara) on time - 4-6 days after the end of flowering, then after another 10 days.
Caterpillars of a small insect devour foliage and ovaries. They are able to bare cherries to the trunk. Use insecticides - Karbofos, Actellik.
The first time the cherries are cut after the spring planting. If Regina is planted in the winter, the pruning is left until spring. Form a sparse tiered sparse crown. Basic Rules:
- number of branches - 5-10;
- lower branches - 50-60 centimeters from the ground, all small shoots below are removed;
- the distance between the tiers is 50-60 centimeters;
- the tier consists of 3 branches;
- at a height of 3.5-4, the cherry growth is stopped.
It takes 4-5 years to form the crown. Later, the tree is thinned out, old branches are removed, and space is given for the growth of young ones.
With the arrival of spring, insulation materials are removed, sanitary pruning of cherries is carried out. It is important to remove damaged branches. Places of trimming are coated with copper sulfate and var. Until the buds come to life, cherries are sprayed for protective purposes with urea or other drugs (Nitrofen) against pests and diseases.
Harvesting and storage
Cherry fruits are removed with a stalk, especially if they are left for storage. There is no need to quickly harvest the entire crop. Cherries hang on the tree for up to 2 weeks without loss of quality and cracking. Better to eat freshly plucked fruits.
Cherries are cut with scissors or pruning shears, laid out in small boxes in 2-3 layers. Store in the refrigerator.
The quality of the fruits, unpretentiousness and good winter hardiness of Regina are the advantages that all amateur gardeners and owners of farms note. Sweet cherries lie and remain on the tree for a long time, delighting with a long period of fresh use. Delicious preparations for the winter can be made from the fruits.
The main difficulty is the selection and planting of a pollinator suitable for the timing of flowering. When solving this problem, growing Regina does not cause any other trouble.
Cherry Regina is a wonderful variety that allows you to get tasty fruits even in not the warmest regions. The variety is gradually becoming a favorite and popular among summer residents. The southern visitor gains a place in summer cottages, delighting with dark fleshy fruits and a long fruiting period.