Agastache and Salvias forum: lifting Salvia guaranitica

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Name: Bob
North Carolina (Zone 7b)
Ferns Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: North Carolina Garden Ideas: Level 1 Hummingbirder
Dragonflies Ponds
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DigginDirt
Nov 27, 2016 6:48 PM CST
HI,
I have a beautiful "Black and Blue" that I would really like to keep growing for next year. The claim is it is zone8-10 but I'm in 7b. Many, including the nursery I bought it from claim it will do fine in zone 7 and possibly 6 if mulched very well.
I thought about collecting seeds as a backup and came across this article from the attached URL in which the author lifts them over winter, essentially treating them like Dahlias. I was wondering if anyone has tried this and how successful they were. I know this variety is easily found locally and not that expensive, but I would still like to treat it as a perennial rather than an annual. So far we've gotten a few freezes down to the upper 20s and it is still blooming; being close to the house & in a raised bed may be protecting it thus far.

http://blog.arrowheadalpines.c...
Name: Kermit Carter
Elk, California (Zone 9a)
Offering 400+ Salvias and counting
Salvias Hummingbirder Butterflies Region: California Garden Ideas: Level 1
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FBTS
Nov 28, 2016 8:22 PM CST
This might help. A link to the first of a five part series on overwintering Salvias:

http://www.fbts.com/quick-digs...

Name: Bob
North Carolina (Zone 7b)
Ferns Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: North Carolina Garden Ideas: Level 1 Hummingbirder
Dragonflies Ponds
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DigginDirt
Nov 29, 2016 8:16 AM CST
Nice overview but I can not find any link to the other parts of the series. I bookmarked the site - it has other info that looks interesting.
Name: Kermit Carter
Elk, California (Zone 9a)
Offering 400+ Salvias and counting
Salvias Hummingbirder Butterflies Region: California Garden Ideas: Level 1
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FBTS
Nov 29, 2016 11:39 AM CST
You will find them all here:

http://www.fbts.com/everything...

Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
Laughter is the best medicine!
Salvias Rabbit Keeper Hummingbirder Birds Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Forum moderator Region: United States of America Bee Lover Butterflies Annuals Container Gardener
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Marilyn
Nov 29, 2016 4:55 PM CST

Moderator

FBTS said:You will find them all here:

http://www.fbts.com/everything...


@FBTS Kermit

All your articles look great. I'll have to read them all completely when I've more time (most likely during winter).

Thanks for chiming in.

Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias Forum!

Hummingbirds are beautiful flying jewels in the garden!


Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
Laughter is the best medicine!
Salvias Rabbit Keeper Hummingbirder Birds Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Forum moderator Region: United States of America Bee Lover Butterflies Annuals Container Gardener
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Marilyn
Nov 29, 2016 5:11 PM CST

Moderator

DigginDirt said:HI,
I have a beautiful "Black and Blue" that I would really like to keep growing for next year. The claim is it is zone8-10 but I'm in 7b. Many, including the nursery I bought it from claim it will do fine in zone 7 and possibly 6 if mulched very well.
I thought about collecting seeds as a backup and came across this article from the attached URL in which the author lifts them over winter, essentially treating them like Dahlias. I was wondering if anyone has tried this and how successful they were. I know this variety is easily found locally and not that expensive, but I would still like to treat it as a perennial rather than an annual. So far we've gotten a few freezes down to the upper 20s and it is still blooming; being close to the house & in a raised bed may be protecting it thus far.

http://blog.arrowheadalpines.c...


@DigginDirt Bob

Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias forum. Welcome!

Hope you read all of the articles that FBTS had links to. Sorry, but I don't know about overwintering the Black and Blue tubers. I live in zone 6a and I just dig them up the following spring and get new plants, since they aren't that expensive.

@FBTS is offering a superior version of Black and Blue on his website and I'll just get that instead of getting Black and Blue. http://www.fbts.com/salvia-x-g...

You might want to click the link, read Kermit's description of it and get it. Anything is better than the Black and Blue we've all been growing and I'm looking forward to growing 'Rhythm and Blues'.

Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias Forum!

Hummingbirds are beautiful flying jewels in the garden!


Name: Bob
North Carolina (Zone 7b)
Ferns Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: North Carolina Garden Ideas: Level 1 Hummingbirder
Dragonflies Ponds
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DigginDirt
Nov 30, 2016 9:27 AM CST
Thank you Marilyn and Kermit. I'm thinking about experimenting with this one. It is fairly close to the house so it is shielded from much of the wind, it's planted fairly deep and has a top dressing of 2-3" of black mulch, so as far as frost protection I think the roots will be fine. It has been watered regularly all year - no drought stress - and the bed is new 50/50 top soil/compost we brought in when we built the raised beds so it is is very well draining.
Since the clump is large enough I think I will divide a small portion and treat it as I would a Dahlia, just to see how it fairs. What stays outdoors I will mulch a bit and see how it does.

I know the cost of replacing it is negligible but there's just something about wanting to help plants survive, knowing I did all I could. When one dies it's an opportunity to try something else that in turn may help other plants thrive as well, since the lessons learned are transferable.

In spring I was considering moving it to another location, but I think I will try the "Rhythm & Blues" there instead and leave this one where it is (it does a good job deterring mosquitoes along with herbs specifically selected & planted in a planter nearby).
The new location will also become home to 3-4 other Salvias of various colors. Perhaps this coming summer our hummingbirds can enjoy real nectar rather than feeder fast food.

Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
Laughter is the best medicine!
Salvias Rabbit Keeper Hummingbirder Birds Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Forum moderator Region: United States of America Bee Lover Butterflies Annuals Container Gardener
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Marilyn
Nov 30, 2016 8:33 PM CST

Moderator

Sounds good Bob. Let us know how it did and does in the spring.
Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias Forum!

Hummingbirds are beautiful flying jewels in the garden!


Name: Kate
Kirkland, WA (Zone 7b)
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Maukahound
Dec 7, 2016 3:07 AM CST
Bob, I dig up my s. guaraniticas each year. I repot each one into 3 - 5 gallon nursery pots & plunge into another larger container. Bark fills in around the sides & then about 8" of autumn leaves on top. These are placed along the back of my garage -- lined up under the eaves, which offers protection from the wind & rain. (I'm near Seattle - we get lots of rain.)

We were forewarned about lows -- mid-20's -- for this week. So, I bent wire fencing, inserted it into the larger containers to offer support. On top of that is draped an old thick blanket. Normally, I don't need to add the extra protection, but we've not yet had a frost in my area - nighttime lows went from mid 40's to mid 20's in one 24 hour period.

The nice thing about overwintering for the next growing season is the root system is already larger, so the plant has a jump-start. My area is considered zone 8, but because of all the shade from the very tall trees, it acts more like 6 - 7. I overwinter as many plants that will fit on a table in the garage; these are set on trays inside cardboard boxes. Usually don't need any bark, but when I get a nice haul of dry leaves, I use those for insulatory purposes.
Name: Bob
North Carolina (Zone 7b)
Ferns Dog Lover Cat Lover Region: North Carolina Garden Ideas: Level 1 Hummingbirder
Dragonflies Ponds
Image
DigginDirt
Dec 7, 2016 2:24 PM CST
Thanks Kate.
Sadly we have only a carport but perhaps I could put a few plants there if necessary. Out front porch runs much of the distance of the front of the house so there is plenty of room there to keep plants out of the rain and protect them from much of the wind.
The portion I will leave in the ground will have some milk cartons with the tops & bottoms cut off, then taped with blue painter's tape to make the sleeve as tall & wide as needed to go around the plant (the blue tape stands up VERY well to the elements and leaves no mess behind unlike the old brown masking tape). The top is left "open" (as in "no plastic") so it can breath and some rain can get in. Several inches around that I build a chicken wire tube and leaves are stuffed between it and the milk carton sleeve. Another little piece of chicken wire sits atop all of this and holds more leaves over the top of the plant. This seems to work well for other plants since the milk cartons help prevent wind, and they hold the insulating leaves away from the plant. Obviously the leaves will not allow sun but since it's dormant there's no problem. It has worked well as at protecting plants in the past. I suppose just a ring of chicken wire inside instead of milk cartons would work too though I originally put the cartons in to help keep critters from wintering inside.
Name: Dan
East-central Iowa (Zone 5a)
Salvias Hummingbirder Region: Iowa
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hawkeyewx
Jan 5, 2017 4:17 PM CST
I've tried digging up guaraniticas to overwinter in plastic bags in the basement. It works, but I've run into a couple problems following replanting the next year. First, when I've done this with black & blue the plants dry out way too quickly, wilting badly by late afternoon even if soaked daily. They should be able to go a few days without water even in hot weather. I'm guessing this may be caused by big air pockets in the soil, between/under the tubers. The bulky tubers make it difficult to get the dirt filled in completely when re-planting. Another issue I've had, with both black & blue and blue ensign, is mid to late season a main branch or two will suddenly go bad, either wilting and dying or just not looking healthy for the rest of the season. The cause may be the same as the first issue I mentioned.

Does anyone have a possible solution to my issues? It's easy to fill in the soil around a plant that comes out of a 4" square pot. It's not easy completely filling in soil around a much larger, uneven, tuberous root system.
[Last edited by hawkeyewx - Jan 6, 2017 11:53 PM (+)]
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Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
Laughter is the best medicine!
Salvias Rabbit Keeper Hummingbirder Birds Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Forum moderator Region: United States of America Bee Lover Butterflies Annuals Container Gardener
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Marilyn
Jan 5, 2017 8:20 PM CST

Moderator

@hawkeyewx

Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias forum. Welcome!

I don't overwinter plants, but hopefully, @FBTS will chime in and answer your questions to help you out.
Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias Forum!

Hummingbirds are beautiful flying jewels in the garden!


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