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Old 03-24-2013, 02:38 PM
 
Location: Land of Free Johnson-Weld-2016
6,474 posts, read 13,403,963 times
Reputation: 6404

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First, I have to defend myself by saying I have a lot of plants which are doing really well. I really do. But over the past few years since I started gardening outdoors, I have had...cough...a few plants die on me:


1. Phlox divaricata - It seems that people all over PA and MD can grow these, except me! I planted several a few years ago. The plants bloomed and looked lovely until midsummer. Then they just disappeared. The plants were under pines in areas of shade and part sun where I thought they would have been happy. I was wrong.

2. Cardinal Flower - I FINALLY got two specimens of this awesome native plant. I had visions of big clumps of glowing red flowers in my yard, but it was not to be. They grew and bloomed in my shady areas, and then apparently died over the winter...never to be seen again. Maybe they really do need wet soil. I even spread their seeds after they'd bloomed...but two years later...no seedlings.

3. Lilium Superbum - There is at least one other MD gardener who has these. A big stand of them, even. *sobs* I thought I could, too. I wanted them so badly, so I was happy to find corms at a reasonable price. They grew little leaves YAY...and then languished and died, never to be seen again. To be fair to myself, the one in the truly wet soil was beheaded by my electrician.

4. Actaea Racemosa Hillside Black Beauty - Another plant I had wanted forever. I bought starts in those little coir pots...and they pretty much instantly died. I can grow pretty much any fern grown to man, and I can't grow bugbane? Sadly, these were the backdrop of my new garden plan...and they're the only plants that croaked. What could have killed them...and so quickly?

If anyone has these plants, maybe you can let me know what I may have done wrong.
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Old 03-24-2013, 04:42 PM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
9,316 posts, read 17,946,933 times
Reputation: 7980
Are all these plants dying in the same spot? There could be something in the soil that does them in, if so.

Perhaps when you get replacements for some of these, they could be planted in several different areas to see if there are conditions that they prefer elsewhere in your yard?

Sometimes if there is a new plant that hasn't been in our yard before, it will be planted in a big pot and moved around until a spot that it thrives in is found. Then it gets planted there.
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Old 03-24-2013, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Land of Free Johnson-Weld-2016
6,474 posts, read 13,403,963 times
Reputation: 6404
Quote:
Originally Posted by hotzcatz View Post
Are all these plants dying in the same spot? There could be something in the soil that does them in, if so.

Perhaps when you get replacements for some of these, they could be planted in several different areas to see if there are conditions that they prefer elsewhere in your yard?

Sometimes if there is a new plant that hasn't been in our yard before, it will be planted in a big pot and moved around until a spot that it thrives in is found. Then it gets planted there.
Sadly, no. These babies died all over my yard. Putting the plants in a pot first seems like a good idea. It could also help them develop a better root system before I plunk them in the ground.
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Old 03-24-2013, 06:16 PM
 
Location: rain city
2,956 posts, read 11,040,330 times
Reputation: 4865
I used to have a rule for plants: they had two years of growing seasons to get their mojo going or I pulled them up, tossed their butts in the driveway, and then waited for my husband came home in his big heavy work truck to run them over. I warned the plants in advance of their fate if they continued to decline and look pitiful.

Many plants did not get the message. Many were flattened in the driveway. Most of them were hybrid tea roses.

I didn't really look at it as a failure on my part when they went to schitz. They were crappy plants which refused to perform, and getting rid of their scraggly arses was a golden opportunity to plant something beautiful which would (hopefully) flourish. Adios amigo.

I know it's disappointing when a treasured plantling goes to hell and dies when you've done your best to nurture it along, but then you can always go back to the pretty nursery and buy something else. In general, plants are cheap. Get a new one.
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Old 05-11-2013, 08:08 PM
 
Location: Land of Free Johnson-Weld-2016
6,474 posts, read 13,403,963 times
Reputation: 6404
Update:
3. Lilium Superbum - They're back! *sobs with relief* These didn't die and actually multiplied. Wow... I have to move one of the clumps, but I'm so happy. Maybe these will bloom someday.
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Old 08-11-2013, 07:57 PM
 
Location: Land of Free Johnson-Weld-2016
6,474 posts, read 13,403,963 times
Reputation: 6404
Update! I went outside today, and there is a cardinal flower blooming! It is not the one I originally planted, I am pretty sure...but a seed must have germinated.
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Old 08-11-2013, 08:36 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,434 posts, read 41,608,566 times
Reputation: 46994
There's hope for you yet!

Surely you don't think you are the only gardener who has had failures!!! Even the most experienced gardener places the wrong plant in the wrong place, mistreats or forgets a plant or even (god forbid) yanks one up thinking it is a weed. I've had 30+ years experience, a degree in horticulture, Master Gardener status and successful career in landscape design but unless I label plants in my garden, in the spring many times I can't id something, forget where I put something or just plain get stupid and yank a perfectly healthy and happy perennial before I realize what I've done. Makes me so mad.
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:19 PM
 
1,168 posts, read 1,827,500 times
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Amen to stupidly yanking stuff in the spring.
Ahem.

But I also have plants I cannot grow. Like Black Eyed Susans and echinacea. Why on earth they will not grow in my part-sun (five hours a day) front bed is beyond me, but I've tried with healthy, large specimens for three summers now and I'm done. Screw 'em.
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:44 PM
 
3,339 posts, read 7,175,816 times
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That's weird. I have killed all of those except for the lily. I was especially ticked off about the cimicifuga (Actaea Racemosa), which bloomed nicely one year and then faded away. I am also able to kill rhodies and azaleas. Oh, and phlox paniculata -- absolutely won't grow for me in Kansas.
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