Volzhanka or Arunkus: tips for planting and care in open ground

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Volzhanka or Arunkus: tips for planting and care in open ground
Volzhanka or Arunkus: tips for planting and care in open ground

The characteristic differences of the aruncus plant, how to plant and care for Volzhanka in open ground conditions, advice on reproduction, possible problems during cultivation, interesting facts, species and varieties.

Volzhanka (Aruncus) can also occur under a name similar to its transliteration - Aruncus. The plant is attributed by scientists to the Rosaceae family, or as it is also called Rosaceae. The genus in natural conditions can be found on the territory of the Northern Hemisphere, where a temperate climate prevails.

Preference is given to light undergrowth and forests, but this representative of the flora grows most of all in shade and on wet ground. Volzhanka is not uncommon in mountainous areas and subalpine zones. There are about 10-12 species in the genus of botanists.

Family name Pink or Rosaceae
Vegetative period of life Perennial
Growth form Herbaceous
Breeds Seeds, cuttings or dividing the bush
Landing time in open ground April-May
Planting recommendations Saplings are placed at a distance of about 50 cm from each other
Priming Nutritious, moist yet loose
Indicators of soil acidity, pH 6, 5-7 (neutral)
Illumination level A wicked place
Humidity level Abundant and regular watering, despite being moisture-loving, drought-resistant
Special care rules Moisture-loving, organic fertilizing required
Height options During the flowering period 1–1, 5 m
Flowering time From late May, June or early July
Type of inflorescences or flowers Complex panicle inflorescences
Color of flowers White or cream
Fruit type Leaflet
The timing of fruit ripening In September
Decorative period Spring-autumn
Use in landscape design As a specimen plant or in group plantings in flower beds and lawns, decoration of borders, walls or as hedges
USDA zone 4–6

Most likely, Volzhanka got its scientific name because of the similarity of inflorescences with a goat's beard, which is translated into Greek as the term "arynkos". But for the first time such a name for this representative of the flora was proposed by the famous flora taxonomist Karl Linnaeus (1707–1778) in his work “Opera Varia”. It happens that the people call him a "tovolzhnik".

All types of Volzhanka are perennials with a herbaceous form of growth. Also, plants are characterized by the presence of a thickened and branched rhizome located superficially. Gradually, over time, the root system lignifies and grows very strongly on the sides. When the time of flowering comes, the plant can reach heights of 1–1, 5 m, however, in the first years, the growth over the growing season will not be too large. The total width of the aruncus bush is 1, 2 m. The stems are upright and are formed quite strong, they have a greenish or reddish tint. Often there is so much deciduous mass that shoots can hardly be seen behind it. The foliage of the plant serves as a decoration for him, even when flowering has not yet begun. At the same time, it is noted that a bush of "goat beard" can grow such a number of leaves in just one season. Therefore, the plant is often mistaken for a large shrub. Skeletal shoots do not die off for the winter, but they lose their foliage.

Volzhanka leaf plates are very decorative, they have a complex, double or triple pinnately dissected shape.The scalloped edge adds attractiveness to the leafy lobes of the aruncus. The leaves are characterized by the absence of stipules. The color of the deciduous mass is a bright green or dark emerald hue. Leaves are attached to the stems along the entire length by means of elongated petioles.

In the process of flowering in Volzhanka, colorful complex panicle inflorescences begin to form on the tops of the stems, composed of a large number of small dioecious (only sometimes bisexual) sessile flowers. The flower stalks are 30-60 cm long. The color of the petals in the inflorescences can be whitish or cream, which is in sharp contrast to the darker color of the foliage. Male flowers are more lush and their arrangement is denser, while female flowers rarely grow, but at the same time they have an openwork edge.

Aruncus has a calyx with five lobes. The corolla is painted in white or pale yellow, it also has five petals. When fully opened, the diameter of the flower is 3 mm. The number of stamens in a flower can vary from 15-30 pieces. At the same time, the stamens in male flowers are longer than in female ones and are underdeveloped. The pistils are located freely, there are 3-5 of them, the column is bent. Male flowers have underdeveloped columns. The ovary has several ovules. Volzhanka begins to bloom with the arrival of summer or in early July. During this period, a tart pleasant aroma begins to spread over the plantings, attracting pollinating insects to the garden.

After the end of flowering in early September, the time for the formation of fruits comes in aruncus, represented by leaflets with a leathery pericarp. When the fruits are fully ripe, they open at the seam in the abdominal region. The leaflets are filled with very small seeds (almost dusty) with rod-shaped outlines.

A plant like Volzhanka does not require special complex care and even a novice gardener can handle it. However, if you make a little effort, then such landings will become a real decoration of the site.

How to plant and care for Volzhan in the open field

Volzhanka blooms
  1. Aruncus planting site should be matched with the natural preferences of this representative of the flora, and he is shade-tolerant and not too fond of direct sunlight. Under such streams of ultraviolet radiation, the leaves dry out pretty soon, and the whole plant begins to slow down in development.
  2. Soil when growing Volzhanka it is not difficult to pick up, since the plant does not make any special requirements in this regard, however, preference should be given to a nutritious, moist, but at the same time loose substrate. It is better if the soil mixture is deeply cultivated and enriched with humus. If the soil is dry, you will need to water it frequently. It is recommended to select the soil with neutral acidity (pH 6, 5–7).
  3. Planting aruncus should be carried out in early spring or late autumn, when vegetative activity has not yet started or has begun to decline. When planting, it is recommended to fertilize the soil with humus. The planting hole should be slightly larger than the earthy clod surrounding the seedling's root system. The root collar, after installing the plant in the hole, should remain flush with the soil on the site. When planting is complete, the substrate is squeezed around a little and abundant watering is carried out.
  4. Watering when growing Volzhanka should be abundant, since the plant is a "water loaf". Especially when it comes to the wrong planting site (in the sun) or not wet soil. This representative of the flora perfectly tolerates not only waterlogging, but also waterlogging of the soil, but besides, it can perfectly cope with drought due to the branched root system.
  5. Fertilizers when caring for aruncus should be sufficient. At the same time, it is noted that the tavolzhnik responds very well to feeding of an organic nature - with rapid growth and flowering.Fertilizers begin to be applied in the period from the beginning of the growing season and, especially in the flowering phase until September. After the aerial part dies off, top dressing is no longer used. After flowering, it is a good idea to fertilize with potassium-phosphorus compounds. The frequency of dressing is once every 2-3 weeks.
  6. Special care tips. When growing aruncus, it is recommended to remove the inflorescences as they wilt, and when autumn comes, it is required to cut off the entire aerial part of the bush, leaving only 5 cm of stems from the soil surface. This operation will be the key to giving the bushes beautiful outlines in the future. After watering or rains, it is recommended to feed and loosen the substrate in the root zone. This procedure is combined with weeding.
  7. Wintering when cultivating Volzhanka, it is not a problem, since some species are characterized by excellent frost resistance. But after all the green mass and stems have been removed, it is recommended to mulch the soil in the place where the aruncus grows with peat chips and cover it with a good layer of fallen dry foliage.
  8. Procurement of raw materials for medicinal purposes. Although today official medicine does not use Volzhanka, folk healers have known about the properties of the plant for a long time. For the preparation of medicines, rhizomes, foliage and flowers were used. With the help of scissors or a garden pruner, foliage and inflorescences are cut (the main thing is not to grab hard stems) when the plant is in the flowering phase. The resulting aruncus material should be spread out on paper or a clean canvas in a small layer. The drying space can be outdoors under a canopy or indoors, but only with sufficient ventilation. When the parts of the plant dry out (readiness is determined by slight brittleness), everything is folded into paper bags or cloth bags. Storage of such harvested raw material of Volzhanka is possible throughout the year. It is recommended to dig out the rhizome for medicinal purposes after the flowering and ripening of leaflets from the aruncus is completed. The roots are carefully removed from the soil, the remains of the soil are removed from the surface and thoroughly washed in water. The water should be cold, preferably running. If the thickness of the roots is large, then for easy drying they can be divided lengthwise into parts. Drying rules are the same as for leaves and flowers. The storage of the roots of the tavolzhnik is possible without loss of medicinal properties for a period of 3 years.
  9. The use of Volzhanka in landscape design. Since in general, and especially during flowering, aruncus is a self-sufficient plant, it can be planted as a tapeworm on separate lawns or in the middle of a well-groomed lawn. Due to the moisture-loving nature, it is possible to plant greenery on the banks of natural or artificial reservoirs, or in the adjoining territory with such bushes of the meadowsweet. Coniferous or deciduous trees or shrubs in group plantings will be excellent neighbors for the Volzhanka. On a flower bed, the flowering of aruncus will not be long, and annual representatives of the flora will look good against the background of bright and rich greenery. If you want to remind yourself of the summer atmosphere in winter, you can cut the flower stalks with inflorescences during the flowering period and dry them. This is because such flowers are practically not preserved in live bouquets, but they will look great in dry flower arrangements. Drying requires a dry, shaded area with good ventilation, such as an attic.

Read also about growing roses in the garden.

Volzhanka breeding tips

Volzhanka in the ground

When growing aruncus, there are the following propagation methods: seed and vegetative (using cuttings and division).

Reproduction of Volzhanka using seeds

The process of maturation of seed material is associated with the fact that one hundred flowers in the inflorescence are dioecious and not all ovaries will be pollinated. When the small leaflets are ripe, they must be collected before the seam on the abdomen opens.The seeds in the leaflets are dusty, therefore, when collecting, all inflorescences must be carefully cut off and placed in a paper bag. The fruits are kept there until they dry out and the seed material can subsequently be shaken out of them.

Sowing seeds of aruncus should be carried out with the arrival of March. For this, large seedling boxes filled with peat-sandy soil are used. If cultivation is carried out in the southern regions, then sowing can be carried out directly on a flower bed before winter, there the seeds will undergo natural stratification and when the soil warms up, Volzhanka sprouts will appear. When sowing is carried out in spring, the seeds are mixed due to their small size with sand, which is spread over the surface of the moistened soil. The seedling box is placed in a warm place with good lighting and the soil is periodically sprayed when its surface begins to dry out.

When seedling seedlings are grown, when sprouts appear and two pairs of real leaves unfold on them, then a dive is carried out in separate pots or an aruncus plant is planted so that no more than 10-15 cm remains between them.

Only when at least a year has passed since the germination of Volzhanka seedlings, it will be possible, with the arrival of spring, to transplant to a permanent place in the open field. At the same time, at least half a meter is left between the seedlings themselves, since the plants can grow.


The transplant should be carried out no later than two years of age of the aruncus, since later the lignification of the rhizome begins and its rather significant growth begins.

Plants grown by the seed method will begin to bloom after 3-4 years of age.

Volzhanka reproduction by dividing the bush

This method makes it possible to quickly obtain specimens capable of flowering flowering. For division, the time should be selected in early spring, until the juices begin to move. Part of the aruncus bush must be separated from the mother plant. Since the root system of the parent bush has acquired lignification, it is recommended to use a well-sharpened knife or even an ax. When dividing, 1–2 renewal buds and a sufficient number of filamentous root processes should remain on each tavolnik division.

All the places of the cuts on the Volzhanka parcels must be sprinkled with crushed charcoal for disinfection and speedy healing, but if this was not at hand, the pharmacy activated one would do. Planting in a new place should be carried out immediately, so as not to bring the root system to dryness. After planting, abundant watering is carried out. Flowering of such specimens can be expected in the first year after the transplant is carried out.

Some gardeners perform division of the aruncus bushes in late autumn, when the plant has passed into a state of dormancy.


In one place, Volzhanka bushes without transplanting can develop well and bloom for almost two decades.

    The sawflies themselves look like beetles, their length parameters reach 2-3 mm. It is noteworthy that the head of the insect is not separated from the body, for example, like wasps or bees, which is why they were called "sitting belly". However, at the same time, the large head of the sawfly remains mobile, it is characterized by the presence of developed jaws and a pair of eyes and three simple ones located in the front part. The whiskers of insects can be filamentous or bristle; they are usually superimposed on a pair of non-folding transparent wings.

    For the fight, it is customary to use all kinds of insecticidal drugs, such as Karbofos, Aktara or Karate, you can use others with a similar spectrum of action.

    Occasionally, aphids attack the bushes of the Volzhanka. A colony of these pests can grow in numbers very quickly and suck nutritious juices from the leaves. Also, at the site of their localization, a whitish sticky coating appears, called a pad, which is the waste products of an insect.This substance can become a favorable environment for the occurrence of fungal diseases, in particular, black fungus. But also the problem is that aphids are a carrier of viral diseases, which currently cannot be cured and all affected plants will have to be destroyed. Therefore, if such green or black insects are seen on the stems or on the back of the foliage, then immediately the bushes are sprayed with the above-mentioned insecticides.

    Read also about the difficulties in cultivating a bell flower

    Interesting notes about the aruncus plant

    Flowering Volzhanka

    Before Carl Linnaeus renamed Volzhanka it was called "barba caprae", such a phrase in Greek had the same translation "goat's beard". But it was decided to use the term "arynkos", which had the same designation.

    Since the 17th century, gardeners have appreciated aruncus and began to use it as an ornamental plant. But at first, this representative has long been familiar to folk healers. And although the plant was not introduced into the pharmacopoeia of Russia, and official medicine does not apply it, but on the basis of numerous studies it was revealed that, for example, such a species as Volzhanka vulgaris (Aruncus dioicus) is saturated with active substances, among which there are flavonoids, phenolic acids and hydroxycinnamic acids.

    Thanks to these components, a dry extract is prepared from tavolzhnik, which has an antioxidant (helps to protect against diseases and aging), hepatoprotective (prevent the destruction of membranes and restore liver cells) and diuretic (reduce the water content in tissues) action. Therefore, Volzhanka has long been used to treat various diseases.

    So the roots, foliage and flowers of aruncus were used to tone the body, fight fever, provide an astringent, choleretic and anti-dysentery agent. If you prepare an infusion of roots, then with its help angina and kidney diseases, colds and rheumatism, excessive urination and diarrhea are treated. Midwives gave such infusions to women in labor to stop bleeding after labor. Tinctures from the rhizome of Volzhanka will relieve swelling on the legs, and the crushed dried part is prescribed for pain in the kidneys. If ulcers appear on the skin, then healers advise to apply crushed fresh roots to a pasty state. If a person suffers from a strong cough, it was recommended to keep fresh, dried, soaked aruncus roots in the mouth.

    In North America, the Indians are also familiar with the medicinal features of Volzhanka. So in the Cherokee tribe, drugs based on the plant eliminated stomach pains and bleeding, such remedies helped with bee stings. They treated gonorrhea and stomach pains with decoctions from the rhizomes of the tavolzhnik, used as a diuretic. In the Lumi tribe, healers prescribed to chew the raw foliage of aruncus for smallpox disease, and the Tringita Indians for blood diseases gave the patient a tincture from the roots, and for ulcers, the rhizomes were cleaned, crushed and applied to the affected skin.

    Contraindications to the use of drugs based on Volzhanka have not yet been precisely identified, however, the exact dosage should be adhered to, otherwise the bust can provoke nausea. You should not use such funds at any month of pregnancy, breastfeeding and children under 10 years of age.

    But not only for medicinal purposes it is customary to use aruncus, for example, on the territory of Sakhalin, young shoots of such a species as Aruncus asiaticus that have grown in spring are used for food. To do this, they are thoroughly soaked before use, and then boiled and rather tasty dishes are prepared.

    Types and varieties of aruncus

    In the photo Aruncus ordinary

    Aruncus ordinary (Aruncus dioicus)

    may occur under the name Aruncus dioecious or Volzhanka. It is a perennial herb, reaching a height of 1.5–2 m.Flowering occurs in the summer (usually July). At the tops of the flowering stems, panicle inflorescences of numerous flowers are formed. The length of such panicles is about half a meter. Flowers are formed in the Volzhanka dioecious, while the formation of separate male or female flowers occurs on different peduncles. The color of male flowers is of a delicate creamy color, the arrangement is dense, and the female flowers are with a white tint, while their placement is more rare. When blooming, a sweetish honey aroma spreads around. Ripening of seeds begins with the arrival of autumn. When collecting and sowing seed, this type of flowering can be expected after three years.

    The stems grow straight in the Volzhanka vulgaris, have a strong leafiness. The leaves are also spectacular, their size is large, the outlines are delicate. Leaf lobes with a serrated edge are attached to a long petiole. The foliage is somewhat like fern frond (leaves). Often, the width of the bushes can reach about one meter. In nature, the plant prefers shaded and damp places, mainly in deciduous forests.

    Among gardeners, this type of aruncus fell in love with its rather high size, but there are also a number of popular varieties, among which are:

    • Kneifi characterized by rather decorative leaves with openwork outlines due to a very fine dissection into lobes. The leaves are painted bright green. The height of the bush reaches 0, 6–0, 8 m, is distinguished by its moisture-loving nature.
    • Volzhanka forest or Dzhineya Fov, capable of reaching a height of two meters. Flowers in the inflorescences of this Volzhanka have a white color with a slight pinkish tinge.
    • Misty Lace or Misty lace this variety of aruncus dioecious is capable of stretching up to 0.7 m in height. The color of the deciduous mass of a rich green color. Leafy shoots contribute to the formation of compact bushes. The color of flowers in panicles is pale cream.
    In the photo, Asian Aruncus

    Asian Aruncus (Aruncus asiaticus)

    resembles from the territory of Siberia and differs in tall characteristics, in height it is equal to 2 meters. The shape of the leaves is double-pinnate, the color of their rich green color. A distinctive feature of the species is a shortened root system, a deciduous mass of coarser outlines and not so strongly dissected, the flowering is very dense. The length of panicle inflorescences is 35–40 cm. Flowers in panicles are white. Flowering begins with the arrival of summer. Seeds ripen with the arrival of autumn. Frost resistance of the species is high.

    In nature, Asiatic Volzhanka is most often found on the lands of Siberia and the eastern Chinese regions. Preference for growth is given to a semi-shady location, fertile and moist soil. Recommended for decorating walls and fences. Recognized as the best among the varieties Fountains, in height not exceeding 0.55 m. Panicles are formed by drooping outlines. Since the plant is hygrophilous, it is recommended for planting near water bodies and in shaded areas. Flowering occurs in the period June-July.

    In the photo Arunkus Kamchatsky

    Aruncus Kamchatka (Aruncus kamtschaticus)

    The native area of ​​natural growth falls on the lands of the Far East, and also occurs in Alaska and the Korean territories, on Sakhalin and Kamchatka, in Okhotia and the Arctic zones, Japan. It can grow on rocks and scree. Plant height varies within 30–150 cm. The root system is characterized by vigor and sufficient thickness, woody over time. The leaf plates have a double-pinnate shape, the leaf lobes are oval. The leaves are attached to the petiole in pairs.

    When flowering from July to the end of August, the Kamchatka Volzhanka forms abundant panicle-shaped inflorescences, with small branches. The panicles include female and male flowers. The length of the panicles reaches only 20 cm. Seeds begin to ripen in September. When growing Volzhanka Kamchatka, it is recommended to choose a semi-shady place.The plant is often used to decorate park areas. The best variety is Alpine, with a height not exceeding 0.3 m, the bushes look neat and compact.

    In the photo Aruncus American

    American Aruncus (Aruncus americanus)

    as follows from the specific name is a native of the North American continent. The height of the stems reaches only 1 m. Flowering occurs from the last week of May to mid-June. The rhizome is very long, while its size increases annually by 7 cm. The bushes do not differ in such a branching as in the aruncus dioecious species. The foliage has a triple-plumose shape. The color of the leaves is light green.

    When flowering, the American Volzhanka forms inflorescences of spike-shaped outlines, composed of white flowers. The flowering is not very dense and therefore the plant does not look so voluminous. Due to its small size, this type of aruncus has won the love of gardeners and is actively used in landscape design.

    Related article: Planting and caring for euonymus

    Video about growing aruncus in open ground:

    Photos of Volzhanka:

    Volzhanka photo 1 Volzhanka photo 2 Volzhanka photo 3 Photo Volzhanka 4 Photo Volzhanka 5

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