By Jennifer Poindexter
Some people like to have low-key landscapes. Then there are some who prefer to have plants included in their landscape which provide a burst of color.
This article is for the latter. If you like a brighter landscape, then Toyo Nishiki may be for you. This is a variety of the shrub, flowering quince.
Don’t worry if you’ve never heard of this plant because I’m going to walk you through what you should know to plant, grow, and care for it.
What You’ll Learn:
- Introduction to Toyo Nishiki, a vibrant variety of the flowering quince shrub.
- Detailed growing conditions, planting methods, and care instructions for Toyo Nishiki.
- Specific techniques for propagating Toyo Nishiki through seeds, layering, and cuttings.
- Guidance on watering, pruning, and fertilizing Toyo Nishiki for optimal growth.
- Information on common pests and diseases that may affect Toyo Nishiki and how to manage them.
- Tips for harvesting and utilizing the fruit produced by the Toyo Nishiki shrub.
- Insights into growing Toyo Nishiki as a bonsai plant.
Here’s how to grow Toyo Nishiki:
Growing Conditions for Toyo Nishiki
Toyo Nishiki is hard to miss due to its beautiful blooms which grow in colors of red, pink, and white. When growing this plant, ensure you have the space for it as it becomes as large as six to ten feet tall and equally as wide.
This plant should remain hardy in planting zones four through eight and needs a growing location with well-draining soil.
Be mindful that Toyo Nishiki grows in both full and partial sunlight. However, it blooms more prolifically in full sunlight.
If you can supply these few needs, then you should have what Toyo Nishiki needs to thrive in your growing area.
How to Plant Toyo Nishiki
There are three main ways to go about adding Toyo Nishiki (aka flowering quince) to your yard. The first option is to grow the plant from seed.
You may purchase seeds or harvest them from overly ripe fruit during fall. If harvesting from fruit, remove the seeds, then wash and dry them thoroughly. They should be left to dry for at least 24-hours.
From there, the seeds need to go through the stratification process. Place them in a freezer bag filled partially with damp sand. Drop the seeds into the bag, seal it, and mix the seeds with the sand by massaging the bag.
Place the bag in the refrigerator for three months and allow the seeds to go through the stratification process.
Once complete, remove the seeds from the bag and transplant them into their own pots filled with well-draining and nutritious soil.
It’s wise to place two-to-three seeds in each growing container as a germination insurance policy. Keep the soil evenly damp and place the containers in bright, indirect light.
After the seeds sprout, continue to provide adequate care to them until the second set of true leaves form. At this time, remove the weaker plants from the growing container by snipping them off at soil-level. Continue providing care to the remaining plants.
When all threat of frost is over, select an ideal growing location. It’s wise to amend the soil prior to planting. Ensure to harden the seedlings off for one week prior to transplant.
After this, dig a hole in the growing location that’s large enough to support the root system of each new shrub. Then transplant each new plant into the location.
Backfill the holes with soil, press firmly around the base of each flowering quince, and water the plants deeply.
Your next option for growing Toyo Nishiki is by layering. This method requires that you have a mature flowering quince plant growing in your yard.
If so, during the spring, find a flexible branch of the plant. Gently bend it over to the ground next to it and dig a small hole.
Before you place the branch into the hole, cut a small slice into the branch’s tip. Then sprinkle it with rooting hormone.
From there, place it in the ground and backfill the hole with dirt. Once the branch forms its own roots, neatly cut it away from the parent plant, so it can develop as an independent Toyo Nishiki shrub.
The last option for propagating this plant is from a cutting. When new growth is forming on your flowering quince shrub, look for the previous year’s growth.
From these areas, remove cuttings which are approximately six-inches in length. From there, dip them in rooting hormone and transplant into a well-draining container with soil that drains adequately.
Dampen the soil and wrap the container in plastic for a greenhouse effect. You’ll want to keep this growing container in a warm location with bright, indirect sunlight.
The cutting should develop roots within one-to-two months. Continue to provide adequate care until the plant is durable enough to move outdoors.
When no threat of frost is near, transplant the new plant into a growing location using the same transplanting instructions as outlined above.
If you’re growing multiple flowering quince shrubs, be sure to provide an average of five feet between each plant to ensure they have room to breathe.
These are a few ways you may add Toyo Nishiki (flowering quince) to your landscape. If you want to expand your gardening skills or add this plant to your landscape without spending a lot of extra money, these methods could prove beneficial to you.
Caring for Toyo Nishiki
Toyo Nishiki is a common variety of flowering quince. This plant needs minimal care, but its needs vary depending upon the use of this plant.
If you’re growing Toyo Nishiki outdoors in a normal landscape setting, you’ll be glad to know it handles heat well and seems to be able to survive periods of drought.
However, it’s wise to water this plant deeply as it encourages the roots to grow deeper into the soil. This is especially important as the plant becomes established in its growing area.
As it matures in its growing location, you probably won’t need to water it anymore as it should be able to survive on what is provided to it by nature, unless you’re experiencing a severe drought.
When watering the plant deeply, it’s wise to water it for a longer amount of time each watering session. This should equate to you watering less throughout the week.
As the water pours into the soil, the plant absorbs what it needs and the rest goes into the dirt around it. When the plant needs more water throughout the week, it’ll dig its roots deeper into the soil to retrieve it.
In turn, this creates a stronger (and healthier) root system and plant. Don’t water Toyo Nishiki again without testing the soil.
Insert your finger into the dirt. When it’s dry to your first knuckle, it’s time to water the plant again. If it’s still damp, wait a day or two before testing the soil.
The next thing you must do is prune this shrub. You should only prune to shape and avoid heavy pruning as this can damage the plant.
Fertilizing is the last thing you must do for a Toyo Nishiki bush growing in your landscape. This plant should be fertilized with a balanced fertilizer one time each year in the spring. This provides the necessary boost of nutrients the plant needs to grow and produce that season.
The last thing to take into consideration with Toyo Nishiki is this is a variety of flowering quince that’s commonly used as a bonsai.
If this is your intent for the plant, it should be grown in a container. Ensure your planter is well-draining and filled with nutritious soil that drains adequately as well.
The planter should always remain approximately ten-inches wider than the plant. When the plant becomes root bound or begins growing too large for its current container, it’s time to transplant.
You should use this opportunity to freshen the soil. You’ll provide the same care as mentioned above, yet pruning is the most important step when caring for a bonsai.
The idea is for the plant to remain smaller but also true to form. Prune the plant as needed after blooming is complete.
Toyo Nishiki blooms around March or April, so you should have time to prune in early summer. Don’t prune as fall nears as you want the plant to have time to recover prior to going dormant.
When pruning, avoid removing more than 30% of the plant at a time. You may also top the plant when pruning to keep it the height you desire as long as you don’t remove too much at once.
These are a few things to keep in mind when caring for Toyo Nishiki around your home as a part of your landscape or as a bonsai.
Garden Pests and Diseases Which Could Impact Toyo Nishiki
Toyo Nishiki does have a few common ailments you must be aware of to protect the plant long-term. The most common disease to impact this shrub is fungal leaf spot.
The best way to avoid fungal issues is to plant in proper growing conditions. Your flowering quince shrub needs a location with plenty of sunlight and well-draining soil.
This should allow the plant to remain warm and avoid oversaturation. Fungal disease thrives in cold, damp areas, so by planting in opposite conditions, you should be able to head many of these problems off.
Pruning is also important to allow for proper airflow. Should your plant develop this disease, be sure to treat it with a fungicide and remove any damaged part of the plant.
The most common pests to impact Toyo Nishiki are mites, scales, and aphids. All of these issues may be treated with an insecticide to avoid further damage to your plant.
These are a few things you must be aware of when growing Toyo Nishiki. By staying on top of problems before they spread, you’re giving your plant a greater chance of surviving any attacks it may face.
How to Harvest from Toyo Nishiki
The last thing to discuss about growing Toyo Nishiki is how to harvest the fruit from the plant. During fall, this plant should produce small, green fruits which turn yellow when ripe.
You probably won’t want to consume them raw as they’re quite bitter. However, many people use them to create homemade jams and jellies.
Harvest the fruits once they’ve reached the right color and store them in a cool, dark, dry location for later use or preserve them by transforming them into preserves.
Quince may also be refrigerated to keep the ideal humidity levels, but they’ll need to be consumed within a couple of months (if left in the refrigerator). If left at room temperature, and fully ripe, these fruits go bad within a few days.
Take these pointers into consideration if you wish to harvest and utilize the fruit from your Toyo Nishiki shrub.
At this point, we hope you have a better understanding of what the Toyo Nishiki shrub is, how to care for it, protect it, and even utilize the fruit it produces.
There’s always a learning curve when growing a new plant, but it’s our hope these tips can help you have a smoother growing experience when adding Toyo Nishiki to your landscape or container garden.
- Toyo Nishiki is a colorful flowering quince shrub suitable for vibrant landscapes, thriving in zones four through eight.
- It requires a spacious growing area, well-draining soil, and performs best in full sunlight.
- Propagation can be done through seeds, layering, or cuttings, each requiring specific steps for success.
- Regular care involves deep watering, pruning for shape, and annual fertilization with a balanced fertilizer.
- Watch out for fungal leaf spots, mites, scales, and aphids, treating them promptly to maintain plant health.
- The shrub produces small, bitter fruits that can be used to make jams and jellies.
- Toyo Nishiki can also be cultivated as a bonsai, requiring diligent pruning and care to maintain its form.
Toyo Nishiki – Flowering Quince Quick Reference Growing Chart
|Toyo Nishiki||Growing Details|
|Plant Type||Flowering quince shrub, variety: Toyo Nishiki|
|Hardiness Zones||4 – 8|
|Size||6-10 feet tall and wide|
|Sunlight||Full to partial sunlight (more prolific blooming in full sunlight)|
|Soil Type||Well-draining soil|
|Watering||Deep watering; reduce frequency once established; water when top inch of soil is dry|
|Pruning||Prune to shape; avoid heavy pruning|
|Fertilizing||Once a year in spring with balanced fertilizer|
|Propagation||Via seeds (requires stratification), layering, or cuttings|
|Pests||Mites, scales, and aphids (treat with insecticide)|
|Diseases||Fungal leaf spot (prevent with proper conditions and treat with fungicide if needed)|
|Harvesting||Harvest fruits when they turn yellow in fall; use for jams and jellies|
|Bonsai Growing||Can be grown as bonsai; requires well-draining soil, frequent pruning, and proper care|