The Q&A Archives: Peachleaf Campanula Buds Dying

Question: I planted six peachleaf campanula this year (3 white and 3 blue). They have grown very well, and started blooming. Recently I have noticed that although covered with buds, a good proportion of the buds do not open, but dry up. I am removing those as they occur. The plants look very healthy and I can't see any insects. What can I do?

Answer: Based on your description I can only make a guess that the plants are aborting buds as a sign of stress. Since these are newly planted, it is possible that they are in need of additional moisture. Although these are resiliant plants on the whole, they do seem to do best in fairly rich soil with evenly moist yet well-drained soil (meaning not soggy), so they should receive at least the rule of thumb amount of "an inch a week" either from the sky or the hose to do their best. New plants might appreciate a bit more while they are establishing their root system. You might want to use your finger to check and see if the soil is moist around their roots and also, use a few inches of organic mulch to help conserve soil moisture if you haven't already done so. Finally, if you don;t think the problem could be water, be sure the dried up buds are not the remains of faded flowers, and look once more very carefully for signs of insects, perhaps even cutting one or two open to make sure there is nothing there. Good luck with your plants!

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