Category: Personal Growing
Sea Buckthorn plants are incredibly important natural resources in the mountainous regions of China and Russia, and the Canadian prairies. The plant will grow naturally in both sandy, and clay soils. In fact the plant will thrive in nearly any soil type, but it is extremely intolerant of shady planting sites. The shrubs themselves are also very cold-hardy. The plants can withstand winter temperatures of up to -40 degrees Celsius (-43 degress F). It is also commonly found growing at high altitudes of 4000 to 14000 feet.
It is commonly planted to prevent soil erosion, but also serves as an economic resource for food and medicine products.
Canada has been investing in planting Sea Buckthorn in the hopes of developing an agricultural market for the the berries. Prairie Farm Rehabilititation Administration (PFRA), Shelterbelt Center at Indian Head, Saskatchewan in co-operation with the Pacific Agri-Food Research Center, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, at Summerland, British Columbia have actually developed a new cultivar in Canada called "Indian Summer". This particular strain is well adapted to the growing conditions of the Canadian prairies, and has been made available through PFRA for shelterbelt plantings, and for crop plantings.
As of 2012, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Agro-forestry Development Centre in Indian Head Saskatchewan has a new variety of Sea Buckthorn plant available for the Canadian market. Since being featured on Dr. Oz, the ADC has received a lot of phone calls from all over the world, and the researchers there have been identified as experts in the development of Sea Buckthorn varieties.
Over the last 15 years of research on Sea Buckthorn, the ADC has developed a new variety of plant which has been named "AC-Autumn Gold". This particular strain has even higher yields and is easier to harvest due to the near-absence of thorns. The berries are twice as large as previous varieties as well. This particular strain is well suited to the commercial growers market, and will only be made available through Canadian commercial nurseries (sorry to all of our American readers).
Sea Buckthorn is recommended for orchard-type plantations across the world. The plants are normally transplanted or seed in the spring time. It grows well in deep, well-drained, sandy-loam soils, but is hardy enough to thrive in soils ranging from very sandy, to clay. Soil alkalinity/acidity does not appear to be much of a limiting factor in the successful growth of these plants either. It is reported that it thrives best and pH 6 - 7. When it comes to fertilizing the plants, they respond better to phosphorous, rather than high-nitrogen based fertilizers. It is not very tolerant of drought, or shade.