The warehouse or pyracantha is an evergreen shrub, native to Asia and Europe, which has a rather fast growth and reaches 2-3 m in height quite quickly.
It has an erect bearing, the thin dark brown stems tend to develop in a rather disordered way, producing a dense rounded crown; they have long sharp spines.
The leaves of the warehouse are small in size, dark green in color, oval, shiny, slightly leathery; in spring it produces innumerable small star flowers, white in color, fragrant, which attract pollinating insects.
In autumn the small round fruits ripen on the plant, gathered in clusters, of orange color; the fruits of pyracantha they are edible, and sometimes remain on the plant until the following spring.
These plants are often used to form impenetrable hedges, but they are also very decorative as single specimens. It is possible to find many hybrids and cultivars on the market, for example p. Navaho which has medium-small dimensions and gives rise to fairly neat, rounded shrubs.
There pyracantha Red Column produces red berries, while the p. Soleil d'Or produces yellow berries. We recommend pruning the shrubs in spring, removing any fruit still present and adjusting the stems that excessively emerge from the crown; in summer it is often necessary to intervene on the plants used as hedges, shortening the green growths so as to keep the hedge neat and with a precise course. Pruning is necessary because this type of plant has a very fast growth which can give a messy appearance to the whole.
Origin of Pyracantha
The origin of Pyracantha is attributable to some regions of Asia minor, the Mediterranean basin, China and the Himalaya. The Greeks called it "thorn of fire" and hence the origin of the name "Pyra" fire and "akanta" thorn.
The beginning of its cultivation dates back to 1500 when it was discovered that the berries, properly cooked, could be consumed in the form of jams and sauces. Other reports report that in wartime the Pyracantha seeds were used to make a sort of coffee.
In any case, in the bibliography there are discordant news about the poisoning of Pyracantha: in doubt it is better not to taste it! Today Pyracantha is used only for ornamental purposes.