Cottage Gardening forum: Am I the only one who can't grow.........

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springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
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Frillylily
Apr 26, 2017 10:23 PM CST
Dianthus? It does great the summer I plant it and then struggles to return the next spring. What am I doing wrong?
Maybe they are just semi-hardy in zone 6? We had a mild winter but it was dry-not a lot of rain and only 1 light snow.
Name: Connie
Edmonton, Alberta area (Canada (Zone 3a)
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conniepr27
Apr 27, 2017 6:00 AM CST
I've had them come back, but not vigorously. But I use bark mulch in my beds and there is no doubt that the mulch interferes with their ability to spread. Even so, they never really look as good as the first year. Not in my beds, anyways.
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Apr 27, 2017 9:31 AM CST
hmm well that is how mine are, I don't use much mulch though around them (always on my to-do list Hilarious! )

But I am in zone 6 and you in 3 so that would make a difference maybe.
Name: UrbanWild
Kentucky (Zone 6b)
Kentucky - borderline of 6a & 6b
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UrbanWild
May 7, 2017 8:59 PM CST
I planted several seriously beat scratch-and-dent Dianthus last year in hastily built beds made from stuff found on site. . They limped through the heat of summer. They would respond with blooms when I watered more heavily. I did not expect any to overwinter. We had a very mild winter and most survived. They exploded this year. They looked great...but I was hoping to plant more pollinator magnets where they are. Just can't bring myself to dig them up. Picture below is after several weeks of fresh flowering and right after huge storms rolled through so they are looking worse for wear...still not bad though. BTW, while I am looking forward to seeing the carnations at end of bed (also surprised they lived given what they looked like when I got them), if they don't come back next year, I already have plans for the spot. nodding
Thumb of 2017-05-08/UrbanWild/4f5c08

Always looking for interesting plants for pollinators and food! Bonus points for highly, and pleasantly scented plants.

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Name: Judy
Simpsonville SC (Zone 7b)
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SCButtercup
Jun 19, 2017 5:09 PM CST
I grow Dianthus from seeds, they do well in cool of early spring then go to seed and all but disappear til fall, they seem to grow over winter and then reach full vigor again in early spring.
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jun 30, 2017 9:03 PM CST
Judy, do you grow them in little pots first or just sew them direct? I can't grow anything from seed here, the weeds take over. I have weeds bad.
I just can't get the dianthus to overwinter. They don't come back for me well.


Another thing I can't grow but would love to is Blanket Flower. They do great the first summer I plant them, but I never see them again and no seedlings either. I'd love to find more plants that would flower alot and come back every year w/o fail.
Name: UrbanWild
Kentucky (Zone 6b)
Kentucky - borderline of 6a & 6b
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UrbanWild
Jun 30, 2017 9:51 PM CST
We had a mild winter and most of the blanket flower didn't come back here either. I think only 3-4 did...and widely separated.
Always looking for interesting plants for pollinators and food! Bonus points for highly, and pleasantly scented plants.

"Si hortum in bibliotheca habes, nihil deerit." [“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.”] -- Marcus Tullius Cicero in Ad Familiares IX, 4, to Varro. 46 BCE
Name: Mac
Soon to be MidCoast, ME (Zone 6a)
Ex zones 4b, 8b, 9a, 9b
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McCannon
Jul 1, 2017 4:49 AM CST
We planted Dianthus this year. I'm curious to see if they survive the winter.
The aboriginal people of the world and many other cultures share a common respect for nature and the universe, and all of the life that it holds. We should learn from that!
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 1, 2017 6:27 AM CST
Even at that, I thought some blanket flowers would come by seed, but I guess they are sterile? didn't have any seed at all.
Name: Deborah
midstate South Carolina (Zone 8a)
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Deebie
Jul 3, 2017 6:24 PM CST
There are annual blanket flowers and perennial ones as well. The annuals are G. Puchella (?) and the perennials are G. Aristata, I think. The more colorful and exotic ones are usually annuals. Thumbs down
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 3, 2017 11:34 PM CST
oh, didn't know that! Bought mine at lowes said hardy to -10? or something like that, so thought they would return here, had a mild winter, and nothing came back Sad and no seedlings either, but I figure they are sterile so that was expected although disappointing.
Southeast OK (Zone 7b)
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KarenHolt
Jul 5, 2017 9:52 AM CST
Gaillardia will come back or reseed well enough in your zone if you allowed your flowers to go to seed. The seed is the round prickly dead bloom. You can easily take one and crush it in fall in the area you want it and it should come in spring. If you dead head there won't be any seed.

Do you have both gaillardia and dianthus in full, all day sun? Both of these plants are made for sun and heat. We have 90-115 degree summers here. They thrive on the higher temps. It's 2 plants I can count on to come back each year. I've had them green when it snows and they survive and come back in spring. I have grown both in fertile soil and Sandy soil and potting soil... I hope this helps. Maybe it's just a simple matter of moving them where they will be happier?

springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 5, 2017 2:13 PM CST
they were in full sun, I didn't take any of the flowers off after they bloomed, I left them hoping for them to seed.
The dianthus just gets smaller and smaller and dwindles away. It doesn't come back after the winter, I suspect it doesn't like the wet/cold springs.
Name: ilona
Lovell, Maine (Western ME near (Zone 5a)
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MissiveMaven
Jul 17, 2017 7:43 PM CST
Usually I am the one with the garden fails, but my dianthus came back very happily this year. I bought past-their-prime plants about this time last summer, and they bloomed happily with deadheading... Then I let them go to seed in late summer, and now they have been blooming happily since spring. Actually come to think of it, they were one of my first happy blooms in the spring. We had a cold winter here but quite a lot of snow, and I suspect my garden is doubly happy for the insulation of snow it got this winter.

As for blanket flowers, I have them returning in great profusion, but it's key to let them go to seed at the end of the season.

Both dianthus and blanket flowers are in full sun for me, though it doesn't get all that hot here and winters are long and cold. Blanket flowers in particular seem to thrive on neglect.
Name: Polly Doodle
Windsor Ontario (Zone 6b)
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PollyDoodle
Oct 15, 2017 5:03 PM CST
I have dianthus 'black adder' and gaillardia 'burgundy' growing from seed.

The dianthus has been blooming for me this first year but I have deadheaded hoping it will retain vigor by not producing seed. I have layered some of the longer stems hoping for more plants next year in this way instead.

IF they survive winter and that's a big IF.

Everything I've read says they hate clay and winter wet and this is what I have. This has been my first growing season at this property and learning how to work in clay has been a treat, heh.

I have some in part sun and some in full sun where I removed patio stones and there was builder's sand beneath. Don't have all my eggs in one basket, so we'll see.

My gaillardia got started late and are still rosettes.

Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Oct 15, 2017 5:09 PM CST
I grew Dianthus in Colorado. It never came back the following year and I've never figured out why that was. I'll have to try it again next summer.
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Name: Elena
NYC (Zone 7a)
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bxncbx
Oct 15, 2017 5:15 PM CST
I rarely have plants overwinter well-even perennials. But last year my dianthus came back! I have it in a large grow bag where it is being overrun by 2 columbines. A campanula is slowly closing in too. I'm curious to see if it comes back next year considering how shaded it was. It did bloom & I let most of the seed drop just in case it doesn't survive.

Gaillardia lasts 2-3 years for me at best. Not a great reseeder either but the bees aren't that fond of it so that may explain it.
Name: Mac
Soon to be MidCoast, ME (Zone 6a)
Ex zones 4b, 8b, 9a, 9b
Cat Lover Birds Hummingbirder Butterflies Frogs and Toads Vermiculture
Critters Allowed Vegetable Grower Canning and food preservation Annuals Morning Glories Sedums
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McCannon
Oct 15, 2017 5:53 PM CST
We have 1 Gaillardia growing from a mixed seed packet. The bees and butterflies love it. The ants built a bed around the base and some of the stems are rotting so I don't know if it will survive the winter. Remains flowers are still beautiful.
Thumb of 2017-10-15/McCannon/0a535b

The aboriginal people of the world and many other cultures share a common respect for nature and the universe, and all of the life that it holds. We should learn from that!
Name: Polly Doodle
Windsor Ontario (Zone 6b)
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
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PollyDoodle
Oct 15, 2017 7:14 PM CST
plantmanager said:I grew Dianthus in Colorado. It never came back the following year and I've never figured out why that was. I'll have to try it again next summer.


Probably not all of Colorado is rocky and sloped like I imagine it to be-
but you would think that would make great drainage and overwintering conditions.
Some plants are a mystery.
Name: Polly Doodle
Windsor Ontario (Zone 6b)
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PollyDoodle
Oct 15, 2017 7:18 PM CST
McCannon said: Remains flowers are still beautiful.
Thumb of 2017-10-15/McCannon/0a535b


Lovely pic! I do enjoy watching bees about their work. I actually even named my dog "Bee".

They are both such cheerful plants for edging in the sun. Hope I can get them to work here.
Both dianthus and gaillardia are recommended butterfly nectaring plants so I'll make the effort.

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