Scumpia: Planting And Care In The Open Field, Growing In The Moscow Region, Species And Varieties With Photos

The deciduous shrub or tree Cotinus is a member of the sumac family. In nature, this plant can be found in temperate areas of Eurasia and in the eastern part of North America. This genus includes only two species. The Frenchman J. Tournéfor, who was a botanist and physician, called this plant "cotinus", in ancient Greece so was called the wild olive.

Such a tree has grown on Earth since the ancient world, probably this can explain the fact that it has quite a few names, such as the Venetian sumac, wig bush, yellows, tannery, smoky tree, etc. Today, such a plant is grown on an industrial scale and is used as a source of phizegin (a dye for orange and yellow wool, leather and silk). Its greenish-yellow wood is used for crafts and its leaves are used for tanning leather. This plant is also cultivated as a foliage plant to adorn the garden.

Properties of the plant

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

Skimpia leatherica or common skimpia is a branching shrub reaching a height of 150-300 centimeters or a five meter tall tree with a compact wide-oval umbrella-shaped crown.

The flaky bark is brown in color. Bare light red or green stems give off milky juice when broken. The simple, alternately arranged, leathery, petiolate, obovate leaf blades may be entire or sparsely dentate. They are dark red or green in color, turning purple in the fall. Small pale green flowers are part of dense paniculate inflorescences, which reach 0.

3 m in length. Its flowering begins in May or June, when the stalks become elongated and a long pale red fuzz appears on their surface, which makes it look like the plant is covered by a pale red mist. The fruit is a green little knuckle with a long stalk. The ripe fruit is colored black. The skumpia can live about 100 years.

Skumpia. Care of Scumpia. Planting of the skimpia

Planting of the skimpia in the open ground

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

When to plant

If you have purchased seedlings with a closed root system, you can start planting them at any time of year, except in winter of course. However, a couple of nuances must be considered. Scumpia has a fairly long growing season, so if it is planted very late in the fall, it will not have time to adapt and prepare for winter.

If this procedure is done in late spring, the rooting of the seedling in the new place will also be difficult because of excessive heat. The site for such a plant should be chosen spacious, sunny and with protection from wind gusts, but it can also be grown in a little shade. A water-permeable, light, alkaline or neutral soil is most suitable, but it can be grown in heavy or acidic soil as well as on rocks. However, when selecting a site for planting, it must be taken into account that low-lying places or places with a shallow groundwater table are not suitable because the plant reacts very negatively to stagnant liquid in the root system.

Performities for planting

24 hours before planting the seedlings should be removed from the container and their root system should be placed in water.

Before planting, the root system should be thoroughly inspected by cutting off the dried or diseased roots, then the cuttings should be treated with fungicide and then covered with crushed charcoal. The size of the planting hole should be slightly larger than the volume of the root system of the seedling. It is not necessary to add fertilizers to the soil or use a special soil mixture, as the skumpia will take root much faster in poor soil. To begin with, 20 liters of water should be poured into the hole and wait until it is completely absorbed. Then, a little soil is poured into it so that a mound is formed, on which the seedling is placed.

When the roots are carefully spread out, the hole should be filled with soil, which is carefully compacted. The planted skumpia should be very well watered. A newly planted seedling's root neck should be 20-30 mm above the soil surface, when the plant will be watered, it will be at the same level with the soil.

Care for the skumpia

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

It is relatively easy to plant and grow this plant. Newly planted shrubs need frequent and abundant watering until they are fully established.

Water adult shrubs only when needed, and it should be infrequent but plentiful. Remember that curmudgeons cannot tolerate stagnant liquid in the root system. In the spring, when the soil warms up well, it is recommended to cover the planting circle with a layer of mulch, this will significantly reduce the number of watering. If the soil on the plot is poor, the plant will need to be sure to feed. When just beginning the vegetation period, skumpia will need nitrogen-containing fertilizers, from the second half of the summer period for feeding it will be necessary to use phosphorus-potassium fertilizers.

This plant responds well to both mineral and organic fertilizers. If the soil on the site is rich in nutrients, feeding the plant with nutrients will probably not be necessary.


Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

Frequent but systematic pruning is required for the normal development of the plant. This should be done at intervals of once every 2 or 3 years, around May, before the buds open. During this procedure, branches damaged by frost should be cut off, and a formative pruning should also be done at the same time.

For young shrubs, the annual stems should be shortened by 2/3, while the old shoots can be cut back to the stump if desired. If trimmed systematically and correctly, the plant will be lush and have large, full-colored foliage.


The blooming curmudgeonia is a stunning sight. This plant looks airy and very delicate. If it is grown in the warm areas of the midlands, it will bloom several times in one season.

Its feathery panicle-like inflorescences consist of cream or pale yellow flowers. The first flowering occurs in May and the second half of summer.

Diseases and pests

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

This plant is highly resistant to diseases and pests. However, in very rare cases, it may be infested by the little pistachio beetle, the pale leaf beetle, and the skimpy leaf beetle. To get rid of these pests, you should treat the infested shrub with Decis or Karbophos.

Hibernation cover

Young shrubs need to be covered for the winter. However, first of all, the bed should be covered with a thick layer of mulch (humus or peat) and this should be done no matter whether you have an old or a young shrub. Then it is necessary to bandage young bushes with lapnik, but experts recommend covering them completely with nonwoven material. Mature plants that are adapted to cultivation in the middle belt do not need to be covered for the winter

Care of the Moscow Region

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

If you are going to grow curmudgeon in the Moscow Region, you should take a responsible approach to choosing the plant type and variety, and you should pay special attention to the plant when preparing it for wintertime. For growing magnolia near Moscow and in Moscow it is recommended:

  • Select the kind and variety winter-hardy;
  • Buy nursery stock that has survived one or two winters;
  • Select a place for planting protected against wind and draught gusts;
  • cover the young bushes during the first winter.

The varieties and species with green foliage are the most frost-resistant. The same varieties that have purple foliage are capable of suffering severe frosts in low snowfall winters, with the bush freezing to the level of the snow cover. However, during the vegetation period the plant is capable of regenerating completely, but it will not bloom this year.

Multiplication of mountain blossoms

Generative or vegetative propagation is possible by grafts, cuttings and shoots.

How to grow from seed

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

Brewing from seed is often accomplished by professionals.

The fruit ripens at the end of the summer and then seeds are taken out of the fruit. The seeds must be prepared for sowing in the spring, and need three to four months of stratification, put in a place with an air temperature of 3 to 5 degrees. Seeds are covered with a very strong shell that does not allow water to pass through, and it is very difficult for a seedling to break through it. Because of this, the seeds must be scarified before they are sent out for stratification. To do this, immerse the seeds in sulfuric acid for a third of an hour, which will make the coating loose and dissolve it.

In case the seeds are sown under the winter immediately after harvesting, you should not subject them to stratification. The fact is that in winter they will undergo natural stratification. Sowing seeds into open soil is carried out in spring or autumn, and they should be sunk only 20 mm. Sowing for the winter does not need to be covered. The first seedlings will appear 12 months after sowing.


Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

Green cuttings are prepared in June, then dipped overnight in a Heteroauxin solution. Planting should be done in the morning, and a greenhouse should be made over the container with the cuttings. A suitable substrate for rooting includes sand, peat and turf soil (1:1:1). Do not forget to air the cuttings systematically, and provide them with moderate but frequent watering (it is recommended to sprinkle them with a sprayer). The roots of the cuttings should appear after 20 days, but please note that according to statistics only 3 cuttings out of 10 will take root.

Spring propagation

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

In the springtime, choose a stem that is growing close to the ground. Then make a longitudinal cut on its outer surface not far from the base. This stem should be bent down to the surface of the ground and fix it in this position. Then cover the part of it where the cut is made with earth. During the whole vegetation period, do not forget to water the offshoot in time, separate it from the parent bush after it is fully rooted and then transplant it to a permanent place.

Species and varieties of curmudgeon with photos and names

There are only 2 species in this genus, namely American Curmudgeon and Common Curmudgeon.

Cotinus coggygria

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

In nature this type of plant can be found on the southern mountain slopes of the Himalayas, in the Crimea, Near East Asia, China, the Mediterranean and the Caucasus. This branchy shrub can vary in height from 150 to 300 centimeters. In some instances the species can be up to 5 m tall and covered with peeling brown bark, the bare stems may be light red or green and the leaves are arranged in a row, usually smooth-edged but sometimes slightly dentate, about 7 centimeters long, obovate or egg-shaped. Rather large but sparse panicle-shaped inflorescences reach up to 0.

3 m in length; they consist of numerous solitary florets of light green or pale yellow color. The fruit is a small dry knuckle. This species has a large number of forms, the most popular of which are: red-leaved, weeping and stalking. The forms with green leaves have a relatively high winter hardiness compared to the red-leaved ones. This should certainly be remembered by those gardeners who want to engage in the cultivation of curmudgeons in the Moscow suburbs.

But not all red-leaved varieties have low frost resistance. The most popular varieties:

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

  1. Lady Young. This plant can be up to 400 centimeters tall. The foliage color is green, and the inflorescences consist of florets, which in time change their green color to cream, and the cream in turn to pink. The life span of this plant may vary from 40 to 60 years.

  2. Grace. This shrub is very tall and can reach 500 centimeters in height. The large, oval-shaped, soft leaflets are up to 5 centimeters long and are colored in red-purple, which changes to scarlet in the fall. The large, conical inflorescences are up to 20 centimeters long and consist of purplish-pink flowers.
  3. Skumpia purpurea (Purpurea).

    The plant is about 7-8 meters tall. Its flower panicles and leaf plates are colored purple and have pubescence.

  4. Golden Spirit. The yellow leaf plates have an orange cast along the edge and along the veins. When grown in the penumbra, the leaflets turn a greenish yellow color.

    In autumn, the leaves gradually begin to turn orange-red. In autumn, it is a very striking variety, with leaves in a variety of autumnal colors, from dark purple to pale yellow to pale green. This variety is characterized by its slow growth. It can grow to a height of up to 150 centimeters. The sprawling crown has a rounded shape.

    The large leaves are brownish-red in summer and a metallic pale blue in fall. The red flowers have a silvery sheen. The life span of the plant is about 70 years.

Skumpia americana (Cotinus americanus), or obovatus (Cotinus obovatus), or sumac olive-like (Rhus cotinoiides)

Scumpia: planting and care in the open field, growing in the Moscow region, species and varieties with photos

This not very large tree in the middle latitudes does not reach more than 500 centimeters high. Its rich green leaves are about 12 centimeters long, which is twice as long as those of common skimpia.

But the length of inflorescences of this species does not exceed 15 centimeters, they are colored in red-brown-green color. This species is native to the Southeast United States (Texas, Tennessee and Alabama). The name of the tree there is american smoketree, which translates to American smoketree. It is not used in the tanning industry and is not known for its yellow pigment, but is decorative in appearance. The large green leaves in autumn change color to a flame-red and the shrub looks like a blazing fire.

In European countries at the moment, this type of skumpia is not very popular, despite the fact that it has a high frost resistance. It can suffer in winter time only from a very strong frost. You should also know that it is an unpretentious plant that has no special requirements for growing conditions.


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