Heat lovers?

suzie29August 27, 2011

I bought cherub & santa rosa this year because I thought they were supposed to do well in the heat. My cherub is hating the heat here, when its over 85-90 & its in the sun (only sun till 1pm) its completely wilted. I replaced my frosty pink with cherub because frosty wilted to much, but cherub is wilting MUCH worse in the same conditions.

My santa rosa just bloomed for the first time 2 days ago & the plant/leaves seems to do ok in the heat 95-99 (not wilting much) but the bloom is 100% wilted & SHRIVLED up all day long, in the sun & shade.

I thought these were supposed to do better in the heat, was I wrong?


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ruth_ann(Z5 Ont.Can.)

Most Brug flowers semi close in the daytime, heat or no heat. Maybe it is trying to protect it's pollen from drying out too fast and keep it's stigma moist in order for the night pollinators to be successful creating seeds to keep the circle of life going. A lot of Brug leaves also look to wilt in the sun/heat, this too is normal as long as they perk back up in the evening without watering them. I feel this too seems to be their way of protecting against high moisture loss ( transpiration) from the leaves).
These both are just my feelings on why Brugs do what they do 'normally'. They 'wilt' even here in my Zone 5-6 and I get no where near as warm as the southern Zones do. Although they do come from warm South America, they are usually found in the higher elevations where the humidity is much higher.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2011 at 9:47AM
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I thought since people said they did really well in the heat, that meant they didnt wilt. I wonder, Do all brugs wilt in the sun? Here is cherub at 12 noon 86 degrees, watered 3 hrs ago, 2 gallons. This is in my front yard where everyone can see it, & this isnt much to look at.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 3:18PM
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ruth_ann(Z5 Ont.Can.)

Suzie, I can't tell, is this plant in the ground or in a pot?

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 4:39PM
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Suzie, I agree with Ruth Ann. Most brugs. will wilt if it get's too hot. I have a few that won't wilt unless we get up in the high 90's but most do. If you can grow them in filtered sun they won't wilt as bad.


    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 5:22PM
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Its in the ground with lots of mulch.
My frosty pink & CG wilted when the temps got into the 90s & above, but this new cherub just seems very unhappy for some reason & is wilting much more than the others. I have 2 CG in pots that dont wilt nearly as much as cherub is, & they are in more sun. I have limited space so the spot its in is where it has to stay.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 8:17PM
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msmorningsong(SW FL 10A)

My Jessie Noel is doing surprisingly well in our heat of recent weeks. It was 95 degrees the other day, with a heat index of 107. I do have it planted where it gets afternoon shade though. But it's blooming like crazy, even in this heat.
Dorthea is also blooming well, also protection from afternoon sun. Mango Crush is also starting to put out blooms, protected. Anne Sessions-blooming, but crinkled. NOL-blooming.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 9:54PM
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prayerrock(zone 5)

Hi new to this forum. I have been growing my brug for the first time this year and it is blooming now. I am a zone 5 but we have been in the high 90s for while and upper 80s most the summer. My brug is a Jamacian yellow brug and it has not wilted at all, all summer. It gets full morning sun and up to about 1pm, then it gets afternoon shade. I also have it planted in ground.


    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 12:47AM
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msmorningsong(SW FL 10A)

Good point Rock. I forgot to mention, all of mine are in the ground too. I don't know if that makes any difference, maybe it keeps their roots cooler.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 7:15AM
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MsMorningSong, do your plants or flowers wilt at all? How often & how much do you water? My cherub gets sun from 7am-1pm so its protected from scorching afternoon sun.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 8:16AM
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ruth_ann(Z5 Ont.Can.)

Part of the reason your Cherub is wilting could be the parentage ( which nothing is known about). It was developed by Park Seeds I believe and they have not revealed the parentage.
The 'versicolor' family of Brugs are known to love heat and are known to not tolerate as cold temperatures as the other 5 families of Brugs. Jesse Noel is made up of the versicolor, suaveolens and aurea family combination, Dorthea is made up of the versicolor and aurea family combination. This could account for their ability to tolerate more heat that Cherub if Cherub does not have as much versicolor influence in it.

Someone said they didn't know if having a Brug planted in the ground made much of a difference as far as wilting goes.
Take Cherub in a black or dark coloured pot, sitting on a cement patio.....the roots get very hot, hotter than in a white pot and hotter on the patio than on grass as cement holds heat longer than the ground does. Plant that same Cherub in the ground right beside the patio so the environment is exactly the same except that the earth ( ground) keeps cooler and dries out slower and cools off faster and that Cherub will not wilt nearly as fast or as much as the first one in the dark pot on the patio will.
So yes, planted Brugs in the ground are far more able to take heat than those in pots in the same location.
If your Cherub is planter where your Frosty Pink that wilted and you replaced was planted, it could be the soil has some contamination in it at that spot too, OR it could be missing some key nutrients the Brugs need.
As you can see, it is difficult to pick only one reason for a Brug's performance or lack of performing.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 10:24AM
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msmorningsong(SW FL 10A)

Suzie, it looks as though Ruth Ann summed it up very well. :)
Yes, I didn't mention it, but Sam wilts to no end. If I didn't want the pollen so bad, I'd trash the plant. Also, Rosamond wilts until watered, so does Whiskers. The ones I named in first post do not. I'm surprised that New Orleans Lady is holding up this well, I was experiencing a lot of bud drop less than 6 weeks ago. She is also the only one in pot, I was mistaken up there about ALL in ground. She is only one in pot,
but has just been re-potted, 12 gallon size, green color, if any of those details help.
Perhaps we have higher humidity than you. Ruth Ann or Karyn may be more astute to this, and wander in and make a comment.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 11:36AM
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ruth_ann, thanks for that info. I wish I knew what brugs have the versicolor in their parentage.
MsMorningSong, we have very dry conditions here so I am sure that has something to do with it. Humidity is around 20-25% in the afternoon, sometimes lower, so that can suck the life from plants. I just thought cherub did better. I will give it till next year to improve or make room for one that will.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 3:26PM
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Suzie, give Cherub time and I'm sure it will adapt. I have several growing in 100% full sun here in hot and steamy Florida and they love it. Ruth Ann is correct about the heat difference in potted plants and the impact it has on performance.

Cherub is a winner and it is one I'm using to breed vigor and pest/disease resistance into some weaker cultivars I have.


    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 5:08PM
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chena(z8 Texas)

I have to agree with Fred and Ruth Ann.. They are both 2 of the best to grow in the heat ! I live in Texas. The only one I can come up with that rival's either is Eternity.. it has withstood trip. digits most from 105 to 110* and is in her second Flush .. Once the temps drop I have HIGH hopes for others... I don't think you have made a bad choice.. just give them some time...


    Bookmark   September 3, 2011 at 3:03AM
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I will give it through next year & hope it does well like all of yours seem to do. If it still does bad, maybe & will change the soil or just move it to another spot.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2011 at 3:38PM
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Heat wilts plants through evaporation, so whether or not a certain temperature will wilt brugmansias is related to the ambient humidity, which varies based on where you live. I think that's why some people are saying they have no problem with wilting in heat but others have huge problems under similar temperatures.

Basically, if you are in East Texas with 95-degree temperature and extremely muggy and humid air, the brugmansia is probably going to be fine and won't wilt.

Meanwhile if you are in Utah with 95-degree temperature but bone-dry, breezy desert air, the brugmansia is probably going to wilt because it just can't get water up from the roots fast enough to keep the leaves full.

(Wind also contributes to evaporation just like a fan or blowdrier, so a breeze will accelerate wilt on a hot/dry day.)

I live in Colorado where the air is VERY dry and on top of that, it's windy here, and high altitude also speeds evaporation.

Now I don't know if your brugs are in the ground or in a pot (it looks to be in the ground) but I grow mine in pots, and here's what I do.

First, I grow the brugs in sun in early spring, so they grow rapidly with lots of leaves. When they're about ready to flower, it's starting to get hot, so I move them to a spot where they are shaded all afternoon. Since they're already close to flowering and big and green, it doesn't bother me if they grow slow for the rest of the summer.

In addition, I set the pots in even bigger buckets of water and fill them up. It's amazing to see them drain several gallons in one day!

Next, I put the brugs next to other shrubs or plants which transpire all day and raise the humidity, and also lower the temperature - and also shelter it from breezes. That makes a huge difference.

Finally, pruning the brugs to keep closer to the ground helps, since if you think about it, the taller the stem is the farther water must travel, and also exposes it more to wind and air. Plus pruning the brugs decreases the size of the plant which helps with the limited space for roots to grow in the pot.

So perhaps the best thing to do would be to find the correct micro-climate. I think wilting is an obstacle that can be easily overcome even with difficult varieties.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2011 at 2:05AM
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...also, I'll add, I keep a brugmansia in my apartment indoors and it doesn't wilt at any time of year (unless it's dry). The others, which I grow at my parents' house (since they have a yard and are also gardeners) are outside in summer, in the garage in winter, and they have all sorts of heat-related problems, so you are not alone. I just use the methods I listed.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2011 at 3:04AM
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