Bedding plants

Hemlock - care tips and types


When caring for the hemlock, it often depends on what type you have in the garden. But they all have one thing in common, they cannot stand drought.

© Heike Rau - The hemlock (Tsuga) is a stately conifer that can reach considerable heights and a proud age. The elegant conifers are often found in parks and larger gardens. Low-growing varieties also make cultivation possible in the home garden. The plants place some demands on the hobby gardener. What is important in the care of the hemlock can be read below.


  • Water 1 hemlock correctly
    • 1.1 Hemlock fir watering in key words
  • 2 Fertilize Hemlock fir properly
    • 2.1 Hemlock fir fertilize in key words
  • 3 Correctly cut hemlock
    • 3.1 Hemlock fir cut in key words
  • 4 Overview of the most important care instructions
  • 5 types of hemlock in a short portrait
  • 6 Hemlock fir - small breeds for the home garden
    • 6.1 Baloony
    • 6.2 cole
    • 6.3 Nana
    • 6.4 Jervis
  • 7 Hemlock - diseases and pests
  • 8 Winter hemlock

Water hemlock properly

The hemlock fir needs additional irrigation. Especially in the first years of standing, it must be ensured that the earth does not dry out. Until the roots have developed sufficiently, watering must be carried out regularly.

" Good to know: The hemlock fir confirms continued dryness by dropping the needles.

Older trees also find it difficult to cope with persistent drought. In a sunny location, watering is often necessary in summer. Since the hemlock does not develop deep roots, it is not possible for the crop to absorb water from deeper layers of the soil. If the soil dries out on the surface, the tree also suffers and wounds.

Hemlock fir pour in key words

  • Drought is not tolerated
  • Water young plants regularly
  • irrigate in a sunny location
  • Water older plants sporadically

Fertilize Hemlock fir properly

The trees have a high nutrient requirement. This should already be considered when planting. Choose a nutrient-rich substrate or upgrade nutrient-poor soil by adding compost or horn shavings.

Fertilization should be carried out regularly during the growing season. Here, an acidic fertilizer is recommended. A conifer fertilizer consisting of organic components is very suitable.

Our recommendation:

1 COMPO BIO Long-term woody fertilizer with sheep wool for ... 36 reviews9,99 €To the shop
2 Dehner coniferous fertilizer, 2 kg 3 reviews8,49 €To the shop
3 COMPO long-term fertilizer for all types of ... 3 reviews24,87 €To the shop
" Attention: The hemlock is sensitive to salt.

Hemlock fir fertilize in key words

  • high nutrient requirements
  • regular fertilization
  • Use coniferous fertilizer
  • prefer organic fertilizers
  • saline fertilizer is not tolerated

Correctly cut hemlock

The hemlock fir reaches its natural growth form without any action. So it doesn't have to be cut. Mostly, the hemlock in the home garden will not do without a cut, because stature heights of up to forty meters can hardly be realized. Even if the saplings are cultivated as a hedge, cutting is a must. This is also possible without any problems, because the crops are very well tolerated by cutting.

If the young branches are cut back, the new shoots reliably take place. When pruning older branches, it can be assumed that they will not sprout again.

" Tip: Preferably cut the annual wood.

The appropriate time for hedge trimming is the months of June to September. The normal pruning of the crops should be carried out in early spring, before the budding. If the annual wood is cut back, a bushy growth can be promoted. If the side shoots are cut, the trees grow taller in height.

" Tip: Special breeds with unusual growth forms should not be pruned.

Hemlock fir cut in key words

  • very well tolerated by cuts
  • Pruning in spring
  • Hedge trimming in summer
  • cut annual wood
  • older wood does not sprout again

The most important care instructions at a glance

care measureexplanation

to water
  • The fluid requirement is high.
  • Young plants need water regularly.
  • The older hemlock must also be watered in a sunny location.
  • The floor must not dry out.

  • Already during planting, the high nutrient requirements of the plants must be taken into account.
  • Fertilization is required during the growing season.
  • Organic fertilizers should preferably be used.
  • The trees can't stand salt.

To cut
  • The hemlock is very well tolerated by cuts.
  • Cutting measures are not absolutely necessary.
  • Smaller special breeds should not be cut.
  • The pruning can be done in spring.
  • The hedge trimming is carried out in summer.

Types of hemlock in a short portrait

Hemlock trees occur in eight species, which are divided into two subgenera of the genus Tsuga.


Height / width
  • reaches a height of 5 to 8, sometimes 10 meters
  • about three to five meters wide

  • Annual shoot approx. 20 to 25 cm
  • up to 40 cm growth per year is also possible
  • initially narrow and straight
  • later a broad crown develops

  • so-called deep root
  • little ramifications

  • sprout at the end of May
  • the leaves are elliptical or ovate
  • their color is dark green
  • in autumn they turn orange-yellow to red

  • blooms from late May to June
  • large white umbels, whose stamens or individual flowers can also have a pink tinge
  • the flower shape is umbel-shaped
  • the flowers attract sensitive noses due to a strong smell

  • grow from October to December
  • optically very apple-like
  • but only one to two centimeters tall
  • depending on the age of the apple thorn, the color is orange-yellow to brick-red
  • long-lasting

Hemlock - small varieties for the home garden


The growth is dense and resembles a witch's broom. The branches are slightly overhanging. The needles are strikingly light green in color. This variety grows about six centimeters per year. After 15 years, the plant that is well suited for the bucket is about one meter tall.


This ground cover has strikingly short needles and grows very slowly. At around ten years old, the sturdy plant grew to a height of 20 centimeters and was about four times as wide.


This variety grows like a pillow and very slowly. The branches grow almost horizontally to the ground. The needles are short and deep green. Nana grows about four centimeters a year.


Initially, this dwarf form grows spherically. Later, the look is reminiscent of a sugar loaf. The needles are strong and of an intense light green. The plant is very suitable for keeping pots and will reach a height of about half a meter after ten years.

Hemlock - diseases and pests

Hemlock firs are generally robust and rarely affected by diseases or pests. Cases of hemlock mealybugs have increased in Europe, particularly in recent years. The pests were introduced from Asia and have obviously spread widely. The infestation damages the shoots and needles of the plant and can lead to the tree dying after a long time.

The fungi Rhizoctonia or Fusarium can also be dangerous for the hemlock. Young plants, which are still not very resistant, are particularly affected. The hobby gardener often only recognizes an infestation by gray to white discoloration on the roots. Fungal diseases are more common in damp weather. The fungal spores attach to the underside of the needles.

" Tip: Remove infected parts of the plant and treat an advanced infestation with a fungicide.

Winter hemlock

Most types of hemlock are hardy in our latitudes. The branches are more sensitive at lower breeds and should be protected from fleece. Protect the soil from evaporation as the plants cannot tolerate drought. This can be done by applying a layer of leaves or mixing in bark mulch.