Mountain Pine Mugus: Description, Planting And Care, Landscaping

This ornamental shrub, the mountain pine (Pinus mugo mughus), is native to the Eastern Alps and the Balkans. This plant is very popular with gardeners, and all thanks to its spectacular appearance and beauty. Landscape designers often use the shrub in their work as it can easily be shaped in unusual ways.

Peculiarities of mountain pine Mughus

Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

Mountain pine Mughus is characterized by slow growth. The average annual growth of such a plant is 10 centimeters each in width and height.

The dense crown is pyramidal in shape. The surface of the trunk is covered by brown bark of high density.

The needles are of deep green color, collected on branches in bunches of 2 pieces. The needles are about 50 mm long. The first cones are formed on the shrub after it is 7 years old.

The orange, cone-shaped fruits form on the branches during flowering.

Because the root system of the Mugus pine is well developed and powerful, it grows well in mountainous areas. It is also hardy and drought-resistant. It is a mountain pine with a strong immune system and is thus rarely affected by pests.


Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

Mountain pine was introduced by plant breeders in 1779.

Today, it can be found in the wild in southern Europe, more specifically in its mountainous regions. The most common shrub is found in France, where it is found as far away as Greece. Most often it is found in the upper mountain zone.

In Russia the Mugus pine is cultivated in the southern, central and middle belt. In addition, it feels great in the territory of Siberia and the Urals.

This plant is long-lived, with an average life span of about 1,000 years.

Putting outdoors

Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

The middle of spring is the best time to plant Mountain pine seedlings. And you should have time to plant the shrub before the buds swell on its branches. In this case, a suitable area for growing such a culture should be sunny. But you must not forget that in the midday hours, when the sun is the hottest, the plant should be in the penumbra.

Thanks to this, it will be possible to avoid the appearance of burns on the needles.

This plant is not highly demanding to the soil. It performs equally well in both saturated and nutritious soil. In order to achieve faster growth and development of the shrub, choose a site with loamy soil for its planting. At the same time, before planting the seedling, sand is added to the soil.

Find quality seedlings of Mugus pine in the nursery. If the sapling is healthy, the color of its needles will be rich green, and the above-ground part - powerful. Seedlings with a closed root system that are 1-2 years old take root best.

Just before planting, the clod of soil in the container is moistened with a small amount of water. If the seedling has an open root system, it should be immersed in a container of water for 2-2.

5 hours. Inspect the root system. If there are sick and rotten roots, be sure to cut them out and then treat the root system with fungicide.

Pit for planting should have a diameter twice the width of the root ball. At the bottom make a layer of drainage from pebbles or brick fragments.

Then a layer of earth mixture is poured into the hole, which includes sand, turf, peat and sawdust.

Further in the hole a seedling is placed, and then it is filled with soil from the site. 20 liters of water should be poured into the root circle of the planted shrubs. In order to slow down the evaporation of moisture, the soil around the trunk is ducked.

Powering the mountain pine.

Mountain pine care

Mountain Pine Care

Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping


Simply after planting the Mountain Pine seedling, it should be watered systematically. This will help to speed up its adaptation to its new location. During the first three months, watering is done once every 7 days. And after three to four months, the plant should already be watered twice less frequently, to be exact, once every 15 days. Shrubs older than one year old only need watering when the surface of the root zone has dried to a depth of 50 to 60 mm.

The plant responds very well to sprinkling in summer. This procedure will make the mountain pine look more spectacular and will also prevent it from being damaged by pests.

Loosening the soil

This shrub has a superficial root system. Therefore, the maximum depth of loosening the soil should be approximately 50mm to avoid damaging it. Once you have finished loosening the soil, be sure to dip the shrub.

Cover the soil surface with a layer of mulch (sawdust) to prevent it from drying out too quickly.


Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

Fertilizing is only recommended after the plant is 3 years old. Fertilizers should be used that strengthen the shrub's immune system. In spring, it is recommended to use fertilizers that contain nitrogen for fertilizing. In the summer and autumn period, phosphorus mineral fertilizer is most suitable for this purpose.

To increase the effectiveness of the fertilizer, after applying it to the soil, the shrub should be watered.

Extra Mugus pine is recommended foliar feeding, which should be carried out several times during the season. For this purpose the crown is sprayed with a solution of Epin-Extra.


Sanitary pruning is done at the beginning of spring. For this purpose, all branches damaged by frost or diseased must be cut out.

In addition, all withered stems that grow inside the crown and thicken it should be cut out.


To keep young mountain pine from freezing in harsh winters, it will need quality cover. Before the first frosts, the surface of the root zone should be covered with a layer of mulch (peat). After that, it is necessary to bend all the branches to the middle, then the plant should be wrapped with burlap. To prevent rodents from damaging the trunk, it should be wrapped in foil.

Older plants can normally tolerate frost under a layer of snow.

Propagation methods

Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

There are three methods used for propagation of mountain pine Mugus: cuttings, seeds and grafting. The first two are very popular with gardeners, because grafting is a complicated process that can only be done by specialists. If this is done by a layman, there is a good chance the seedlings will die before they are five years old.

Growing from seed

Seed propagation makes it possible to grow a healthy and well-developed seedling without much trouble.

Before you start sowing, the seed should be stratified. Place it in the refrigerator on the bottom shelf for 1 month. After this time, the seeds are soaked in a solution of manganese potassium for some time. After that you can start sowing.

The box should be filled with substrate, which should definitely include peat.

When sowing the seeds, keep a distance of 50 mm between them. The seeds should be covered from above with a film with holes. Remember, however, that it takes two years for the seed material of such a plant to fully mature.


The preparation of cuttings is combined with the spring sanitary pruning of the shrub. Pots filled with sand mixed with peat are used to plant the cuttings for rooting.

After that, the substrate is moistened and covered with a special material on top. Do not forget to water and ventilate the cuttings in time, as well as remove weeds when they appear. Rooted and hardened cuttings are planted in the garden after about a year and a half to two years.

Diseases and pests

Mountain Pine Mugus has a strong immune system, so pests are extremely rare to settle on it. But if the shrub is poorly cared for, it can cause it to become diseased and die.

Diseases most dangerous to this crop:

  1. Rust. In an affected plant, you can see yellowish-orange colored spores on the needles. This is a fairly dangerous fungal disease and, if not treated promptly, may well lead to the death of the plant. This disease is treated with fungicides and treated systematically once every week and a half.
  2. Brown Schutte.

    The development of this fungal disease is usually observed in the summertime. The first symptoms are the needles turning yellow. In autumn time you can see black dots on them. The diseased plant should be cut out all diseased shoots, followed by treatment of the crown and trunk with a solution of copper sulfate.

Pests most commonly found on Mugus pine include: aphids, spider mite and scab.

To kill them, pesticides such as: Decis, Aktellik, Fundazol, etc.

Application and importance

Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

As the mountain pine Mugus has a branched and well-developed root system, it easily resists drafts and winds, due to which it is often used to protect the soil from erosion. This plant is also often used for planting on mound slopes.

Use in landscape design

Mountain pine Mugus: description, planting and care, landscaping

Mountain Pine Mugus has a rather spectacular appearance. So it is great for a private garden or yard decoration.

The plant can also be used to create a green hedge. In addition, the shrub is often planted along borders and alleys.

In landscape design, such a plant is almost never planted alone. As a rule, it is used for group planting with other conifers, for example, with firs or junipers. Compositions of conifers of different height can decorate any garden.

This shrub feels great next to other ornamental plants. Its best neighbors are roses, hydrangeas and cereal perennials. Mugus pine will be able to decorate even a small garden plot. This compact and attractive plant will delight you with its beauty for many decades.

Ecyclopedia - Mugus Pine


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