Caragana komarovii Schischk.
Caragana splendens Schischk. ex Sobolevsk.
Robinia pygmaea L.
Caragana pygmaea is a deciduous shrub that usually grows 50 - 120cm tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as an emergency food, a fuel and a tying material. It is grown as an ornamental in gardens[
Asia - Kazakhstan, southern Siberia, Mongolia, northern China (Nei Mongol)
Covering enormous stretches on steppes, dry hills, stony slopes, taluses, steppe valleys of mountain streams, barchan and dune sands (with barchan sand-hillocks piling up around them); sometimes in meadows, even peaty meadows[
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Caragana pygmaea is native to desert land at high elevations with virtually no rain in the growing season[
]. It is very cold tolerant, but does not grow well in moist, mild climates.
Prefers full sun and a light sandy dry or very well-drained soil[
]. Does not require a rich soil, succeeding on marginal land[
]. Tolerant of dry alkaline soils.
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
Root - cooked[
]. An emergency food, used when all else fails[
The shoots are very flexible, they are used for tying and are said to be equal to Salix species for this purpose[
The wood is used for fuel[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame[
]. It usually germinates in 2 weeks[
]. Stored seed should be pre-soaked for 24 hours in warm water then sown in a cold frame[
]. If the seed has not swollen then scarify it and re-soak for another 12 hours before sowing[
]. Germination usually takes place within 2 - 3 weeks at 20°c[
]. Good percentage[
]. As soon as they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 7 - 10cm with a heel, mid summer in a frame[
Layering in spring.