Ask a Question forum: Goldenrod 'Fireworks' died after 3 years

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Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan

Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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frankrichards16
Oct 2, 2013 3:51 PM CST
I planted this goldenrod in 2010. Did great in 2011 &12. Died in 2013.

Thumb of 2013-10-02/frankrichards16/d89a0b

A closeup of what was left...

Thumb of 2013-10-02/frankrichards16/596a62

It does not seem to be rust. Any ideas?

Here is a photo from 2011

Thumb of 2013-10-02/frankrichards16/4c3d33



Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Oct 2, 2013 5:42 PM CST
Frank, I have no idea but it sure is a gorgeous goldenrod, or was. Hope someone pipes in to help you out.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
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RickCorey
Oct 2, 2013 8:10 PM CST
Wow, the plant database ahs 224 Goldenrods, and one whole database devoted to them alone!
The Goldenrods Database

I don't notice any of them saying "short-lived perennials". I had a gorgeous, huge "perennial" Pacific Giant delphinium that got bigger every year for about three year, ... then never came back at all the next spring. "Short-lived perennial".

Do they usually die back to the ground very year?
Or are there woody stems remaining through the winter?
Was it an especially cold winter? The only variety with a cold-hardiness listed in our database said "Zone 2", so "winter freeze" might not have been the killer.

I don't know if they prefer lots of moisture, or are prone to drowning without good drainage. was the year they died particularly wet or dry?

Do you have any animals likely to nibble on young seedlings?

Or a neighbor who might have blamed his allergies on your plants and done a Midnight Ninja raid?


Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan

Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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frankrichards16
Oct 2, 2013 8:37 PM CST
yes they die back to the ground in the winter.

it was a normal winter, not to cold, wet or dry.

animals & neighbors are ok:)

I was originally thinking that they might be short lived perennials, but I could find no data to support this.
Name: Sharon
Calvert City, KY (Zone 7a)
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Sharon
Oct 2, 2013 10:40 PM CST
Frank,
I don't have a cultivar, I only have the huge old goldenrod, probably Solidago gigantea, that I carefully brought back with me from the mountains of E Kentucky where I grew up. It has failed to return only 3 or 4 times in about 20 years, last year was one of those times. It comes back in the same two spots, every year, and every year I watch for it -- with only a few disappointments.

I don't remember what happened weather-wise the first years it didn't show, but in 2009, another no show year, we'd had a huge ice storm in January that lasted about a week. Trees covered my yard and the gardens were raked and quite disturbed during the cleanup. The goldenrod was no show that year along with a few other things and I thought for sure it was gone forever. But it returned, same spots, in 2010 and 2011. Last year, 2012, we had a severe drought starting in June and slowly ending in October. So no goldenrod at all. This year I watched for it. I didn't pull a weed, didn't cut anything, I just watched for it and right on time there it was in great abundance in both spots beginning in mid August as usual. I guess you can tell I love goldenrod.

I can't say that goldenrod is temperamental, but I can tell you that occasionally mine will skip a year, yet return the next. I have never figured out if it's weather related or what happens, but I think if you just cut the stalks down as they dry and don't disturb the soil, it might come back next year. You say there's no sign of any mildew or anything like that, so it just might surprise you.

On the other hand, I could be so wrong.
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Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Oct 3, 2013 7:52 AM CST
Wow, that's interesting. Hopefully your's will do that too, Frank. It sure is a pretty one.
Name: Cindi
Wichita, Kansas (Zone 7a)
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CindiKS
Oct 3, 2013 8:53 AM CST
A short story for you that might or might not help...
When we bought our house, it had been empty for a few years. Bees had made a huge hive in one wall, and were coming in through a hole in the brick. I planted goldenrod and other plants for the bees right by the wall. A few years pass, we remodel, and put a door in that wall. A beekeeper moved the hive to a hive box down by our pond. (He said it was the biggest hive he had ever seen!)
I tried to dig out the plants that were now in front of the door, and thought I had most out. The goldenrod came back, though. I let it grow for 2 seasons, then decided it needed to go. I tried cutting it back, but that only encouraged it! Then one hot day, a hose was left running in that bed, flooding it. The goldenrod developed the moldy look yours has in the first photo. A few weeks late, i found the roots were soft and I was able to dig it out. sorry, I know yours is really nice looking and is properly sited. Mine was in heavy clay that did not drain well. Strangely enough, mine was on the north side of the house where snow and ice accumulate, and that didn't seem to affect it. Sogginess in heat did.
Is there something that has changed in your area where water might not be draining the way it should?
As far as I know, that's the only thing that hurts it. Confused
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Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan

Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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frankrichards16
Oct 3, 2013 10:10 AM CST
we did have a lot of rain early this year. Maybe thats it.

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