The Q&A Archives: Flowering Shrub Won't Flower

Question: We have a Tartarian Honeysuckle bush that is three years old and has never bloomed. Is it required to have both a male and female bush to produce flowers?

Answer: Lonicera tartarica (Tartarian Honeysuckle) does not require a "fruiting pair" in order to bloom. It is also extremely hardy and quite adapatabile to various growing situations. It flowers best in full sun and with at least an average soil quality.Here are some guidelines for routine care: any needed pruning (to remove diseased/dead/damaged branches, and to keep the plant's form) should be done only in late spring or early summer (after the blooming period); in early spring, apply compost and/or complete fertilizer such as 10-10-10; and a year round layer of organic mulch a few inches thick should be maintained over the root zone. It may be that your shrub has been devoting its energy to becoming established rather than blooming, as is occasionally the case with very immature shrubs or those planted in extremely windy or otherwise challenging locations. As long as the plant seems healthy, I would allow it another year or two.

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