What are bushes

Definition of the shrub

Plants that belong to the group of shrubs are, on the one hand, perennial woody plants that can grow either ground-covering or upright. On the other hand, they have a certain structure that distinguishes them from trees.

The structure of the trees can basically be divided into different structure and branching patterns. An essential feature for the structure of the tree is a trunk, which acts as the main axis and which the bushes lack. However, trees and bushes can also be multi-stemmed.

The characteristic branching patterns are divided into acrotonia, basitonia and mesotonia.

Acrotonia = promotion and branching via the top shoots. This form of branching is still used by many trees in the early years of youth, but later it is almost exclusively reserved for trees.

Basitonia = promoting growth by branching from the ground. Purely characteristic branching for the bushes. The structure of the shrub is formed by the formation of new shoots from buds close to the ground, mostly annually. Either this leads to the older shoots overgrowing and dying off (independent rejuvenation) or the older shoots are further branched out by acrotonic promotion.

Mesotonia = promotion and branching via the shoots in the middle area. Also a purely characteristic branching for the bushes. These are older shoots that begin to lean at the top. On the top of the resulting curvature, new shoots then form and thus continue the further development of the shrub. A combination of basitonic sprouts that lean and branch further through mesotonic shrub - basitonic sprouts, then mesotonic branching - can also be considered as a characteristic branching pattern of the bushes.

In addition, there are also woody plants that seem to be almost or completely lacking in basitonic or mesotonic branching. They are mainly built up through the promotion of their top shoots and the simultaneous promotion of the subordinate shoots

Such a branching pattern then often leads to the terms 'bush-like' or 'tree-like' in the assignment.

Depending on the type of their branching pattern, the woody plants cannot only be divided into the tree or shrub category.

Rather, based on the branching pattern alone, it is also possible to read off how the plants are to be cut in a species-appropriate manner. Even without knowing their name.