Pyracantha coccinea, a very showy shrub

You can use your Pyracantha coccinea to decorate any corner

La Pyracantha coccinea It is an evergreen shrub that produces highly decorative flowers and fruits. In fact, it is so interesting that it can be grown both in a pot and in the garden, as it tolerates pruning very well.

In addition, it adapts to a wide variety of climates, from hot to colder, so that surely you will not have any problem with it. But if you want to know everything about this beautiful plant, then we are going to tell you what its characteristics and its care are.

Origin and characteristics of Pyracantha coccinea

View of the fruits and leaves of the Pyracantha coccinea

Our protagonist is a spiny evergreen plant endemic to southeast Europe and south-central China popularly known as piracanta or firethorn whose scientific name is Pyracantha coccinea. It reaches a height of between 1,5 and 2 meters. Its leaves are lanceolate, with a toothed margin, leathery, shiny on the upper side and with a length of about 3-6cm. The flowers, which sprout in spring, appear grouped in clusters and are white. The fruit is a red pommel about the size of a cherry that ripens in late summer or early fall.

Its growth rate is medium, that is, it is neither very fast nor very slow. If the conditions are right it can grow at a rate of about 15cm per year.

Several cultivars are known, among which are:

  • lalandlei: it has large bright orange fruits.
  • Morettii: it has large fruits of an intense red color.
  • Solei d'or: has yellow fruits.

How do you take care of yourself?

To have a Pyracantha coccinea healthy, it is advisable to take into account the following:


It can be both full sun as in semi-shadow.


  • the garden: not demanding. It grows in all types of soils including limestone.
  • Flower pot: mix universal culture substrate mixed with 30% perlite, previously washed river sand, or similar.


In summer you have to water every 2-3 days, while the rest of the year 1 or 2 weekly waterings will suffice.


Pyracantha coccinea is a very easy plant to care for

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From early spring to late summer must be paid with chemical (universal) or organic (guano, hummus, manure). In the case of living in an area where frosts do not occur or they are very weak, it can also be paid in autumn.

If it is going to be kept in a pot, it is preferable to use liquid fertilizers following the indications specified on the product's packaging to avoid hindering the water drainage.

Planting or transplanting time

You can plant your Pyracantha coccinea in the garden or transplant it to a bigger pot in spring, when the risk of frost has passed.



To multiply it by seeds you have to follow this step by step:

  1. The first thing to do is obtain the seeds in autumn and sow them in a transparent plastic tupperware filled with vermiculite previously moistened with water.
  2. Afterwards, the tupperware is placed in the refrigerator, where the cold cuts, dairy products, etc. are put, and it is left there for three months.
  3. After that time, the seeds are sown in a pot with a universal cultivation substrate mixed with a substrate that facilitates drainage (perlite, vermiculite, washed river sand, ...) mixed at 30%.
  4. Then, copper or sulfur is spread to prevent fungi from appearing.
  5. Finally, the pot is placed outside, in semi-shade, and watered.

Thus, the seeds will germinate throughout the spring.


To multiply by cuttings you have to do the following:

  1. In summer a branch that measures about 30-35cm is cut.
  2. Afterwards, the base is impregnated with rooting hormones in powder or homemade rooting agents.
  3. Then, it is planted in a pot with vermiculite previously watered.
  4. Finally, copper or sulfur is spread to prevent fungi, and it is placed in semi-shade.

So you will have a new copy in autumn.


The fire thorn is little pruned. You just have to remove dry, diseased or broken branchesas well as past fruits.


Red spider, a pest that can affect your Chamaedorea

It can be attacked by several:

  • Mites: like the red spider. They are deposited on the leaves, on which they feed. In them you will see spots of a lighter color and even yellow, and cobwebs. They are fought with acaricides.
  • Mealybugs: they can be cottony or limpet-like. They also feed on the leaves, as well as the most tender stems. They can be removed manually or with a brush dipped in pharmacy rubbing alcohol.
  • Beetles: you can eat the flowers. They do not pose a major problem.
  • Green mosquitoes: they are small insects that attack the leaves. They can be fought with neem oil.
  • Drills: they are insects that dig galleries in the trunks. They are fought with anti-drill insecticides.


You may have the following:

  • Roya: It is manifested by the appearance of bumps or spots of red or orange color on the leaves. It is fought with fungicide.
  • Powdery mildew: manifested by the appearance of a grayish powder or mold on the leaves. It is also fought with fungicide.
  • Erwinia amylovora: it is a bacterium that causes burns on the leaves. Treatment consists of removing the affected parts.


La Pyracantha coccinea supports up to -7ºC.

How is Pyracantha bonsai cared for?

Pyracantha can be worked as bonsai

If you don't have much space or you don't have a garden, you can also have a fire thorn ... as a bonsai. His cares are:

  • Location: outdoors, in full sun or in semi-shade.
  • Irrigation: frequent, about 4 times a week in summer and somewhat less the rest of the year.
  • Substratum: 100% akadama or mixed with 30% kiryuzuna.
  • Transplant: every two years, before spring.
  • Pruning: early spring. Those branches that intersect must be removed and those that are growing too short must be trimmed.
  • Pinching: after flowering. It has to grow 6 to 8 leaves and remove 2.
  • Wiring: only if necessary, at any time of the year.
  • Subscriber: in spring and summer with a liquid fertilizer for bonsai, following the indications specified on the product packaging.

For what do you use it?

Pyracantha, a very frost resistant shrub


It is a very decorative shrub, which produces very beautiful flowers and fruits. Whether as a hedge or as an isolated specimen, in the garden or in a pot, it is a true marvel.


The fruits are cooked to make jams or jellies.

What did you think of this plant?

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4 comments, leave yours

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  1.   Sepulveda Gauer said

    I will try to make the jam here in Bogotá.

    1.    Monica Sanchez said

      Let's see how 🙂

  2.   Tomas said

    I'm going to have my first bonsai piracanta. And I will follow the advice I just read. I hope everything will be all right.

    1.    Monica Sanchez said

      Cool. If you have any questions, contact us 🙂