Trailing Soapwort - S. Ocymoides

nutsaboutflowers(2b/3a)January 29, 2011

I was researching the plants suggested in my "spilling over" type plant post, when I found this:

Saponaria Ocymoides - Trailing Soapwort

Does anyone grow this? Apparently it's hardy to Zone 2 and likes to grow over rocks, etc. There's even people on the Winter Sowing forum who have tried it that way.

It doesn't seem to be very popular, or common, as my web searches aren't telling me much, or have conflicting information.

Anyone out there with it?

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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Yeah, I have some and it's nice. It likes hot and fairly dry, and full sun so I don't really have anywhere for it at this house, it got straggly and I think disappeared in part shade. It was nice over a small brick wall at my old place though.

I can't remember if I WSed it or started it inside but it doesn't bloom the first year anyway.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 8:21PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

I've had it a couple of times and it didn't last too long either time - maybe three or four years. I still want to try it again. We talked about it in some thread awhile ago - can't remember exactly what it was about, but Gil and i both remembered the picture of it on McFayden's catalogue - gorgeous!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 8:36PM
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nutsaboutflowers(2b/3a)

Thanks Gil and Marcia ! I forgot to ask if it's disease and pest resistant, or prone to something I should watch for.

Where I want to plant it, is in a brick planter, 4 bricks high, and in relentless beating down hot sun, (that's assuming we'll have summer this year) so I think I'll give it a try =:)

Some people may tell me it won't last the winter since it's above ground, but my tulips and dianthus did, so I'll risk it.

Only problem is, now I have to order from yet another company, LOL =:)

Lynn

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 9:05PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

No it's trouble free. Grows similar to sedums I'd say. It might be ok in a planter, depends how big the planter volume is and what kind of winters we have.

I do remember that McFaydens photo discussion, LOL it looked like a waterfall of cotton candy. ;0)

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 9:10PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

oh p.s. the first time I tried it, I ordered plants and they didn't grow. I looked at my records and I grew it indoors from seed once but it got leggy. It grew nicely from wintersowing, the 3rd time. Good thing I keep records.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 9:15PM
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nutsaboutflowers(2b/3a)

Very good thing you keep records. =:) I just searched a gazillion seed companies and can't find the seeds. Would you have recorded where you got seeds from?

BTW How do you organize your records? Computer, old fashioned paper and pen? Pre-printed journal? I would love to keep track of my experiments as I know I forget most of them. However, tracking everything seems to be a daunting task and I can't quite decide how to go about it efficiently.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 9:53PM
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Pudge 2b

I grew it from seed and had it for several years. I eventually had to get rid of most of it as it was seeding out in my crushed rock but I still have some plants around.

It won't bloom for a whole season so to have interest there you might want to consider some other plants as well. Snow in summer (Cerastium tomentosum) comes to mind, as well as creeping baby's breath (will bloom twice in a season if sheared after first bloom and also comes in a nice pink) and sedum.

Here is snow in summer - it would trail down a wall very nicely and when not in bloom has nice silver foliage

This is an area I have that's filled with a bunch of different sedum - they all bloom at different times, have contrasting foliage and are really hardy

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 9:59PM
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north53 Z1b MB(zone 1b Canada)

Another non-invasive spiller is arabis. I have the white flowering one. It's the first thing to bloom in my garden. After it's finished blooming I just shear it back. The foliage is silvery and attractive.
I had saponaria years ago and liked it, but it died after one tough winter and I never replaced it.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2011 at 11:40PM
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freezengirl(3aMN and 5AK)

Pudge everytime I look at one of your garden pictures I feel like I have died and gone to heaven!

I have to get myself motivated to gather some rocks. We have them everywhere around here but the ice right now is treacherous.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 3:00AM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Why of course I have records of that! I bought them from Gardens North but I see they don't have them listed this year. If I had any left I'd send you some but it seems I used em all.

Pudge, that last rock garden photo is sooo pretty!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 1:44PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Another reliable trailing/mounding perennial is Alyssum saxatile (I think it got renamed but that's what I call it). It's easy to grow and blooms heavily for a long time, but it's JUST. SO. YELLOW.

I confess I got sick of how yellow it is and pulled it all up. :S

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 1:47PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Thought of another that might work - Dianthus Arctic Fire. It's super easy to grow. Technically it's not trailing but it's a very enthusiastic groundcover in my garden.

And this was my Alyssum saxatile.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 1:53PM
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Pudge 2b

I also have Arabis, Marie, the pink one, but every year it seems to get infested with flea beetles just as it's coming into bloom.

I've not grown Alyssum saxatile here - I did have it it Ottawa and I liked it.

I think you're right about Dianthus, Gil. Mine will lift up in mats not rooted to the soil or it grows out onto the driveway, so I'm sure it would trail down a wall just fine.

Those rocks and sedum in my photo hide a raised square concrete slab that was used to support a chimney. That whole area was my grandmother's little house - when we took over the property and her house had to come down, we filled in the cellar but kept the foundation The sedum works well there since it is shallow rooted. I just keep adding more sedum varieties to it as room becomes available. But it's getting really shady there now so may have to soon rethink that plan.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 3:05PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

I had Alyssum saxatile for awhile too, and i also have Dianthus 'Arctic Fire'. That's almost like a weed! Never thought about it trailing, though i bet it would. Good idea!

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 7:49PM
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north53 Z1b MB(zone 1b Canada)

Yeah, Pudge, I forgot about the flea beetles. I think last year was the first time that happened to me though. I forget what I used, either rotenone or insecticidal soap, but it worked.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 10:24PM
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SugarPop(3)

For anyone that is still interested i bought my Soapwort seeds at Peavymart. They handle them every year.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2013 at 11:09PM
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nutsaboutflowers(2b/3a)

Thanks SugarPop (and everyone who replied).

I may have planted some last fall from a clearance sale, but that may also be in my dreams. I'll have to try to find my notes.

I'll also keep my eyes peeled next time I see a Peavy Mart.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 3:59PM
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nutsaboutflowers(2b/3a)

It appears that I did buy 3 of them at a clearance sale last fall.

They're growing like gangbusters and I'm really happy with them.

They bloomed profusely in the spring and since some websites said they would rebloom if I sheared them and some websites said they wouldn't, I went ahead and sheared and they're blooming like crazy again :)

So, to whoever suggested them to me long ago, Thanks! :)

    Bookmark   August 3, 2013 at 5:17PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

Good to hear! I thought i winter sowed some a couple of years ago and planted them in a spot where i wanted trailing plants, only to find that i had planted S. offianalis (sp?), and it's upright. They've grown quite nicely, of course, but i'll have to move them because they don't quite fit where they are. I have some Ocymoides seeds now, and am thinking of starting them soon so that i can plant them in the fall.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2013 at 9:42AM
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