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Gardening Articles: Landscaping :: Yard & Garden Planning

Blue Star (page 4 of 4)

by Rick Darke

Propagation, Care, and Maintenance

All blue stars can be grown from seed or from cuttings. Except for very young plants, division is my least-preferred method of propagation. In time, blue stars develop a deep, nearly woody root mass. Though this contributes to the plants' longevity and drought tolerance, it is nearly impossible to cut through without a sharp spade or an ax. Plants left standing through winter may self-sow, resulting in seedlings for new plantings or to give away.

Most blue stars require only annual cutting to the ground in winter or early spring. They rarely require supplemental fertilization and generally thrive on the fertility usually present in most garden soils. In fact, excess fertilizer is likely to cause floppy growth. Most are strictly clump-forming and are among the longest-lived of all perennials.

Rick Darke is a horticultural consultant living Landenberg, Pennsylvania.

Photography by Suzanne DeJohn/National Gardening Association

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