Ask a Question forum: Question about Biennials

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Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Jul 27, 2017 12:59 PM CST
This is my first year growing Foxglove which, I hear, is a Biennial. All I know about Bi's is that they don't bloom the first year. What about subsequent years? Will they bloom every year after that or do they bloom every other year? Please tell me they don't bloom the 2nd year then die! What a waste!

This year I planted 4 Dalmation Series Foxglove. They were tiny starter plants in 2" pots and are now blooming which goes against what I thought I knew about Bi's. Any help here would be greatly appreciated as I am dazed and confused!
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Meri
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Jul 27, 2017 1:08 PM CST
Biennial will blossom first two years. Then 2 nd year die.
Bi means they live 2 years.
😎😎😎
Anything i say, could be misrepresented, or wrong.
Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Jul 27, 2017 3:56 PM CST
AWWW, I was hoping they bloomed every other year! Sighing! Thank You!
Meri
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jul 27, 2017 4:57 PM CST
Biennials grow the first year, bloom the second year and then die. Yours are blooming now so must be second year plants. In order to have foxgloves continuously, I would think you need some that aren't blooming this year. The seeds from this year's plants will bloom the summer after next unless they sprout this year. Then they will bloom next year. Are we confused yet? Confused
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springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
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Frillylily
Jul 27, 2017 5:03 PM CST
some bi's will bloom the year you plant them if the conditions are ideal and they are started early enough. They will bloom more if they are deadheaded (this may not apply to all kinds). Then they bloom more heavily the 2nd year and they die usually. Occasionally they may bloom/live a third year if conditions are right. But they are not long lived. This is a bummer, however it is my understanding that the seeds should bring new plants, but some varieties may be sterile hybrids and the seeds don't grow is my understanding. I do wish they were more reliable.

I have never had luck w foxgloves personally.
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Jul 27, 2017 5:15 PM CST
In my area, not letting biennials go to seed.... Just means that the plants don't replace themselves...
Don't cut off the flowers!
I don't know how foxgloves do in south Dakota, but in my area, the seedlings come up very soon after bloom... Ie"; spread seeds as soon as they are ripe.
The new plants bloom next year.
Biennial is a bit of a misnomer for plants that live 10 months or thereabouts...
My blackeyed susans do the same thing, and they are called annuals!
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Jul 27, 2017 5:16 PM CST
Hear ! I'm saying, " HEAR ! " CAN Y'ALL HEAR ME ? They re-seed themselfs. Every year. They come back. AND ! Bloom. 😁😁😁 Thumbs up

😎😎😎
Anything i say, could be misrepresented, or wrong.
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Jul 27, 2017 5:23 PM CST
For the most part a biennial grows foliage the first year, flowers and creates seed the second year and then dies.
I had an Evening Primrose that did not follow the rules. I assumed there was enough of cold snap that convinced the plant that winter had happened. The plant grew and bloomed all in the same year.
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springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
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Frillylily
Jul 27, 2017 6:27 PM CST
I wanted to plant a Sea Holly, but it says on the tag at Lowes that they are sterile and will not re-seed. I am told they are short lived perennials. In other words, bi-annuals that do not have viable seed. Confused
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 27, 2017 6:28 PM CST
stone said:In my area, not letting biennials go to seed.... Just means that the plants don't replace themselves...
Don't cut off the flowers!
I don't know how foxgloves do in south Dakota, but in my area, the seedlings come up very soon after bloom... Ie"; spread seeds as soon as they are ripe.
The new plants bloom next year.
Biennial is a bit of a misnomer for plants that live 10 months or thereabouts...
My blackeyed susans do the same thing, and they are called annuals!


It is my understanding that you do cut off the blooms so the plant will continue to bloom. At the end of the season, you allow the last blooms to go to seed for the next year. Once the plant flowers and the seeds mature it somehow knows and dies then as it thinks it has completed its mission. Deadheading these can prolong their life. However, I do not know if this is true for all, maybe just some varieties.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jul 27, 2017 6:34 PM CST
AGGGHHH!! Don't plant the sea holly!! They don't have to reseed. Everything you read about this plant says not invasive. I would have to disagree and all those pricklies make it challenging to dig up.
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Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Jul 27, 2017 7:02 PM CST
In my experience...
You don't cut the flowers off.
Its an urban legend that anyhing good results.
If the plant is going to reblom, it will... Whether you cut the flowers off or not.
Some just die after getting cut back.

Feel free to do side by side testing.
My observations were not under controlled conditions...

But have grown them a number of years.
[Last edited by stone - Jul 27, 2017 7:08 PM (+)]
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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Jul 27, 2017 7:13 PM CST
The flowers on my plants rarely get deadheaded, and the ground rarely gets cultivated in any way until way into the season... not by design, but by failure to "get around to it." As a result, I get a LOT of volunteer plants Big Grin
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jul 27, 2017 7:40 PM CST
Weedwhacker said:The flowers on my plants rarely get deadheaded, and the ground rarely gets cultivated in any way until way into the season... not by design, but by failure to "get around to it." As a result, I get a LOT of volunteer plants Big Grin


And I don't remember to fertilize until half way through the summer. Smiling

Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 27, 2017 8:32 PM CST
DaisyI said:AGGGHHH!! Don't plant the sea holly!! They don't have to reseed. Everything you read about this plant says not invasive. I would have to disagree and all those pricklies make it challenging to dig up.


that is good to hear, I will definitely have to locate me some of this...I have terrible soil, so I don't have luck w a lot of things.
Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Jul 27, 2017 9:03 PM CST
OK, thanks for all the input! Knowing what to expect will help me from freaking out when they die. I'll look for little volunteers. I believe the Dalmation series is a shorter variety.

So the plant I just got from the dumpster with the trimmed down stem is going to die but the newer little ones will live to bloom next year. Right? And the little 2" starter plants that I planted this spring and are blooming now might live to bloom next year too?

OK, I'm just putting myself in the zone and what will be will be
Meri
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Jul 27, 2017 9:06 PM CST
Yes, you've got it all figured out now. They will either die this fall or live until next fall. Smiling
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 27, 2017 9:22 PM CST
DaisyI said:AGGGHHH!! Don't plant the sea holly!! They don't have to reseed. Everything you read about this plant says not invasive. I would have to disagree and all those pricklies make it challenging to dig up.


What kind of sea holly do you have?
Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Jul 27, 2017 9:48 PM CST
Sea Holly is one of the plants I wanted! Are they a nasty plant? I don't have a lot of space for a plant to go wild. I have Monarda doing that. But I love it so much I don't care! Should I rethink the Sea Holly?
Meri
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Jul 28, 2017 12:23 AM CST
Frillylily said:

What kind of sea holly do you have?


There's different kinds? Confused I don't know which one I had. It had blue flowers and was about 2 feet tall. I lived in Zone 8.

My problem with the Sea Holly was it grew really well and was very healthy. Which meant it kept getting bigger and bigger and was taking over the Bearded Iris. It was hard to dig out because it had a long tap root and was also dangerous. I really think it was running and suckering off the roots.

On the other hand, it is a really cool looking plant. Maybe in colder climates, it would mind its manners more. You should try it.

Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org

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