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Horticulture in Poland

15 Jan 2008 /  #1
I work in horticulture. I happen to get all excited about plants. No, not that kind of excited!

There are a couple of things I am interested in for this thread:

Are there any good botanical gardens in Poland - you know the sort of thing - nice trees, interesting shrubs, glasshouses full of greenery.

What is Poland's horticulture industry like? I am mostly thinking about the ornamental garden sector rather than market gardening and food production. I have seen quite a few polytunnels on my travels, but the plants we buy into the UK from Europe don't come from any further east than Germany.

Looking at the relevant maps and knowing a bit about the Polish climate, the best place for growing most things should be in the northwest where it doesn't get as cold in the winter. The cold winters must be one of the limiting factors.

But the house I have stayed at in Poland twice now, has a very nice garden with a mix of ornamental plants and fruit and vegetables. There must be some appetite for plants and gardening other there.
15 Jan 2008 /  #2
Are there any good botanical gardens in Poland - you know the sort of thing - nice trees, interesting shrubs, glasshouses full of greenery.

Wroclaw's 100yr old Botanical Gardens are a nice place to visit.
15 Jan 2008 /  #3
I work in horticulture


Totally off the subject. I am working a fram show tomorrow!! So I get to go play in the dirt with horticulturists!! :-) I will think of you donkey.

Good luck with your thread.
OP osiol  
15 Jan 2008 /  #4
Wroclaw's 100yr old Botanical Gardens

I might have to look that up. I've not been to that corner of the country. I don't need any more excuses than my own natural curiosity, but it's always good to know there are some nice plants waiting for you when you arrive somewhere new.

play in the dirt

That is one very important aspect of horticulture.

My old workmate who moved back to Poland reckons I could, if I wanted to, get the same job over there for less pay in real terms, but a higher standard of living. It is not a plan of mine, but I do live and breath (and occasionally photosynthesise) horticulture.

As someone a lot more famous than I once said:
You can lead a horticulture, but you can't make her think.
15 Jan 2008 /  #5
Botanical gardens (Ogrody botaniczne) in Poland
15 Jan 2008 /  #6
I might have to look that up

In one day you could visit:
The Botanical Gardens. Enjoying the plants would take a couple of hours or more.
The Japanese Gardens, which are actually quite small, would only need an hour or so.
The park around the Japanese Gardens is full of trees. Fir, Oak and others.

The above are in the same location as other important tourist sites.
OP osiol  
15 Jan 2008 /  #7

I believe there is a very old Oak tree in Poland which is famous for being a really old Oak tree.
Oak trees are good. They are the home to so much other wildlife - everything from fungi, through the mosses and liverworts, the shade-loving plants that grow beneath them, the insects that live in and on the leaves and in the leaf-litter or feed on the pollen, galls and gall-wasps, squirrels all the way to creatures such as the mighty bear! Okay, so maybe not bears!

In one day you could visit:

All within the city to which you are the eponymous forum hero?
15 Jan 2008 /  #8
I believe there is a very old Oak tree in Poland which is famous for being a really old Oak tree.

The oldest tree in Wroclaw has been given a name and is located on park maps.

Wroclaw: The greenest city in Poland.

Did you notice that some people in Poland would have a beautiful view from their windows, if they didn't surround their house with tall trees. This is especially noticable in the countryside.
OP osiol  
15 Jan 2008 /  #9
Did you notice that some people in Poland would have a beautiful view from their windows, if they didn't surround their house with tall trees

The countryside is something I have only ever seen rolling by from the window of a car or bus, but there is something idiosyncratic about the Polish countryside. The views very often seem to be framed by hedges and woods (at least the places I have seen - I do not know the south at all). I think I know what you mean, but I am going to have to carry out further investigation.

I stayed in a house in Warsaw a few years ago, with a small garden which was covered with snow for the duration of the visit - the trees were all bare. In £omża, the place I have stayed at twice now had neither tall trees nor a spectacular view that would have been hidden by them.

But I'm sure I have seen rural houses surrounded by conifers. But there are so many balconies! You have to have a balcony with a view surely!
15 Jan 2008 /  #10
I believe there is a very old Oak tree in Poland which is famous for being a really old Oak tree.

I believe it is called Bartek.
15 Jan 2008 /  #12
dąb Bartek:), but it is dying. its age is estimeated for around 600 years.
OP osiol  
15 Jan 2008 /  #13
but it is dying

Really dying? Oh no!

Ancient trees that are over-visited suffer soil compaction around the roots, so this may not be suprising. On the other hand, a very old tree where the wood in the middle has rotted away can actually be very healthy - once that wood has decomposed, there is a lot less weight on top and therefore a lot less strain on teh root system.

But alas, nothing lasts for ever, not even a mighty oak. There may be much older trees, even in Poland, that go completely un-noticed. Where coppicing, whether by man or by nature, has occurred, a single tree may appear to be a series of trees in a highly irregular ring shape. It is disputed whether or not these should be counted as clones or as a single tree.

Is coppicing still practiced? (Or am I steering my own thread away from horticulture and into forestry? Oops - I had better send myself a formal apology). I have seen far too many Scots Pine (bloody Scots - they get everywhere) plantations (Pinus sylvestris) on my (limited) travels, and maybe not quite enough of the deciduous woodland (proabably Oak-Birch, maybe Beech) that should dominate most of the country.

dąb Bartek

Yes. I did mean that one. Where is it? So I might one day trample the soil over it's poor roots one day.
15 Jan 2008 /  #14
Where is it?
15 Jan 2008 /  #15
Yes. I did mean that one. Where is it? So I might one day trample the soil over it's poor roots one day.ąb_Bartek

here is a Polish Wikipedia site for it
15 Jan 2008 /  #16
you can find older oaks near Poznań:
16 Jan 2008 /  #17
The Botanical Gardens Lublin, which is run by the horticulture department of the University UMCS in Lublin

My wife studied horticulture here at UMCS in Lublin and is now doing her Phd at the National Institute for Soil Science in Pulawy, where she conducts research into Miscanthus sinensis (Elephant Grass) for bio-fuels.

These are friends of mine Marek and Magda Majewscy and they own a market garden dealing in many specialistic trees shrubs for ornamental gardens where they sell to Gardens all over Poland and Germany and have become very successful, consequently now they are moving into the Russian market, which is very lucrative.

If you ever find yourself down here around Pulawy in the Southeast of Poland then send me a message and I will introduce you to Marek and his hospitality; that is sitting in his beautiful garden is the summer with a couple of bottles of chilled vodka :O)
OP osiol  
16 Jan 2008 /  #18

I'm not authorised to view the English page!
It all looks very ericaceous - heathers, rhododendrons and the like, but the pictures show some nicely laid out stuff. The (sorry) English use of such plants usually lacks the kind of scale that sets these plants off well. That's great for acid soil, but I believe there are alkaline soils in Poland (see forthcoming thread - Is There Chalk In Poland?)

Soil Science

Rendzina - English word for a kind of soil - a kind of thin soil overlying chalk. From the Polish:
Rzędzić - apparently (it's not in the dictionary I occasionally have access to) it means 'to chat'

The success of your friends' business makes it look like a growing (pun intended) industry in Poland.
My appetite for a visit has most definately been whetted.
16 Jan 2008 /  #19
as i recall the orangerie in £azienki park in Warsaw was cool and i am pretty sure there are botanical gardens in the park too.

surely there must be some "old growth" trees in Bialowieski NP.
17 Jan 2008 /  #20
I'm not authorised to view the English page!

yes I know, I spoke to him yesterday and there is some problem with the English page and I will help with the English site in order to update it over the next couple of weeks.
17 Jan 2008 /  #21

I'm looking for some help! i am studying horticulture in Ireland and seeking some info on Nurseries in Poland.
Coud you tell me the largest nurseries in Poland?
17 Jan 2008 /  #22
Coud you tell me the largest nurseries in Poland?

I will speak to my wife and see if I can find out the info for you.

Could you be more specific on what type of nurseries you are looking for.
17 Jan 2008 /  #23
Well now what is it you do in the dirt? Tractor sales , equipment or ring leader?
17 Jan 2008 /  #24
There is apparently( isay apparently because I know very little on the subject) a very good botanical gardens in Gliwice ,set in a nice park and,if I recal all "victorian" ironwork and glass main building. The local student who was showing me around raved about it and he seemed to know his stuff ,pointing to all sorts of plants and splurrging out fancy sounding names...I think I shattered a myth that day,the one about "englishmen" all loving gardening.
OP osiol  
17 Jan 2008 /  #25
fancy sounding names

The great thing about the fancy-sounding names is that horticulturists worldwide use the same names. Pronunciation is a different matter though.

the one about "englishmen" all loving gardening

I love my garden and it had a permenant half-finished look to it.
That's because it is permenantly half-finished.
18 Jan 2008 /  #26
plant & tree nurseries. Any help would be greatly appreciated!! :)
18 Jan 2008 /  #27
Here is a site that holds a list of members of the Polish Nurserymen Association, some of the sites have an English option that you can look at :)
18 Jan 2008 /  #28
Does any wine barrel oak come from Poland?
Lukasz K  
19 Jan 2008 /  #29

I am a hobbistic gardner but I hope my information would help you. I am especially interested in conifers.

Poland is quite a big country and climatic conditions differ a lot.

When we think about ornamental plants you have right that the minimum winter temperatures are limiting factors. Most part of Poland lies in USDA zone 6, so average absolute minimum temperatures are at about -23 C, the Odra Valley (from Czech to the sea) and the coast lies in zone 7 (absolute minimum about - 18 C) and the furtest north-east (begining somewhere from £omża) in zone 5 (-26 C). But in whole country (exept from the coastal zone) you can witness a temperatures close to -30 C (once per 30 years in the west and once per 5 years in the east).

So due to the winter conditions the most preferable region are the neiberhood of Szczecin and Wrocław. There are few beautiful botanical gardens and arboreta there (in Wrocław, Wojsławice, Glinna and Przelewice). You can find there old exemplars of such trees as Sequoiadendron gighanteum, Cedrus libani, Cunninghamia lanceolata, Catanea sativa many Magnolias, Rhododendrons and Azaleas.

But also the important factor is he lenght o the growing season and the temperatures of the spring and atumn. Summers are warm and long in the southern Poland in the foothills of the moutains. And even thought the winters can be cold in the eastern part of this region it is considered as the best for frut production (Poland is the first in Europe in apple production) but also cherries, plums, peaches, apricots and since a few years also grapes are grown thre. The norhen part of Poland is not favorable for ocharding due to the late frosts that occur every few years in the first days of May (called "the cold gardners"), just in the time that ochards blossom, and destroy most of the fruit.

Acid soils are found in most of the country becouse it is covered by glacial deposits of clay (less acid and more fertile) and sands (very acid and poor - covered mostly by pine forests). Only in the south-eastern part of the counry (near Kraków and Lublin) you can find limestones and base solis.

What can I say about a horticulcural buisness in Poland? I think that people started to care more and more about their gardens nowdays an espcially near big towns there is a great demand for plants. But the market is quite full there becouse you can find many big gadening centres that sell mostly plants importes from Holland but also there are lots of bigger and smaller private nurseries. I can say that the variety of plants most commonly bought by polish is quite poor. There is a great domination of conifers (Thuja, Chamaecyparis and spruce forms), rhododendrons and magnolias (you can find these plants in nearly every new created garden) which makes every new garden looking the same...

If you have some further questions you can ask:

Best regards

OP osiol  
19 Jan 2008 /  #30
loads of interesting stuff

Interesting stuff.

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