The Q&A Archives: Dwarf Burning Bush question

Question: I live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and have planted 8 Monrovia Dwarf Burning bushes approximately 4 years ago. The plants are near a stockade fence, in a well drained area. While I admit that North Texas summers can be very hot, all of these bushes are watered 2-3 times a week in the summer via a sprinkler system. The problem is, these bushes have hardly grown at all since we planted them. The tallest one being no higher than 30 inches at this time. Is there a fertilizer or plant food, or other suggestion you can make which might get these plants stimulated to further growth? With the exception of 2 plants, they are all located on the north side of our property, which gets more than 8 hours of full sunshine during the day. Thank you.

Answer: Suzanne,

Watering too often can promote disease problems and if the soil stays soggy wet roots will die back from lack of oxygen. It is better to give a good soaking once a week or even less often. Mulch on the soil surface also helps. You are on the plant's southern limit but I would try making the change in the watering schedule. Starting next March fertilize it with a turf fertilizer such as 15-5-10 or similar product sprinkling a half cup around each plant throughout a 5 foot circular area around each bush. Repeat every 4 weeks for three more applications.

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