Is limelight budding in Chicago area yet? and other general care

vbnetJuly 3, 2011

I saw them budding at the plant nursery, but of course those are potted. I keep examining mine that I planted 2 years ago and no buds yet =(. They are 4 - 4.5 ft tall, and look very healthy. I have not pruned them at all except to take off the dead flowers from the previous year in early April. I'm so impatient! Does anyone else have buds yet?

I'm very much a novice so any advice towards fertilizing and pruning would be helpful. I gave them a dose of holly tone in early June. I used 10-50-10 fertilizer once in middle June. (Truly I have NO idea what I'm doing.)

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Found this post from you Luis and it is helpful. I guess I just need a little atta girl to make sure I'm using the right fertilizer. It's what they told me to use at the nursery, holly tone then the other 10 50 10. Also one of the employees told me I could fertizlize my hydrangeas ( I also have 3 peppermint and 2 ES) until Aug 1. All have gotten the same treatment. The peppermint are very slow to get any larger but are steadily giving me blooms - I bought them this year so I'm sure the grower has used tons of product on them. I have 1 new ES giving tons of gigantic blooms, I have and older one (long history, moved several times, finally in a GOOD spot) and it's giving me tons of blooms although the blooms are smaller than the new ES.

ALSO I broke down and put in a Vanilla Strawberry. Only 1 bloom so far, but it's gorgeous vanilla right now. The plant is visibly growing as well. This one only got holly tone while I planted it about 3 weeks ago.

Any comments or discussion are welcome and appreciated!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2011 at 7:31PM
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It can be as late as early August. The ones at nurseries have been blooming since late May but as you pointed out, blooming times at nurseries are always suspect.

You can fertilize in June with any of these fertilizers: compost, composted manure, cottonseed meal or a general-purpose slow-release like Osmocote 10-10-10. You can also add some weak fertilizers during the growing season; things like liquid seaweed, liquid fish and-or coffee grounds but stop all fertilizers in July to help the plants prepare for winter.

Sounds like your soil has plenty of minerals so the plants are happy there! Do not be alarmed about one growing faster or slower than another. It happens sometimes. Not really sure why. My slow grower is a Glowing Embers.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2011 at 9:48AM
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Thanks for the reassurance. I might just have to keep buying one shrub fresh from the nursery each year and stick it in a pot so I can have my early blooms, lol. Really no worse than buying flowers every week for the counter.

I'll try to be patient.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2011 at 11:32AM
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Do you have any pictures from last year's blooms? I like its blooms a lot too.

By the way, do not worry too much about fertilizers if your soil is not deficient on minerals. Hydrangeas do not need much in terms of fertilizers so skipping that a whole year will not kill them. I once forgot to fertilize one year and nothing died because of that.

I get more "casualties" due to the dogs than anything else. When the pooches show up smelling like herbs or with stuff attached to their hair, I go 'what did you do now or how deep is the hole?'. Hee hee hee!

    Bookmark   July 4, 2011 at 11:57AM
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mine are just now showing good buds here in virginia-just wait!!!!!!!!!

    Bookmark   July 4, 2011 at 7:01PM
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Thanks hokierustywilliamsbu. It's good to know that people south of me are just starting to see the real thing.

No, Luis, shame on me, I have no pics. I just got done washing my dogs (2 goldens), so I'm too exhausted to go out to take some now of my VS. or peppermint. The peppermint is pretty when it's fresh but turns not the nicest brown, so I cut them off. But then, they rebloom. Maybe later ot tomorrow.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 8:21PM
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In central Ohio, I have buds and and blooms are just beginning. This is the second year for mine, and I didn't fertilize. They grew gangbusters and are loaded with buds.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 10:14PM
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I MIGHT have buds starting, I'm going to try uploading.

sorry if there's 2 here, it's my 1st try w/ photobucket

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 1:17PM
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I think mine is about to-- I read somewhere that it starts end of July. I am in a suburb of Chicago, and bought mine last yr, but it was a pretty good size.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 11:31AM
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Under Iowa Skies & Sun despite getting barraged by near golfball sized hails in Jun ~ that left all my 13 H paniculatas w/ tons of broken tips & holey foliage ~ they are all in different stages of cluster buds & some have started opening petals.

3y/o Limelight is second to the last to show buds end of Jun (4y/o Pink Diamond was last & 5y/o QF was first along w/ 6y/o Kyushu).

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 9:32PM
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IT"S official. Buds!!! yay! Anele I'm in Mt Prospect.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 11:26PM
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Hi - I thought to share Limelight 2010 pix, here in Iowa ~ she have grown quite a bit this season.

Here is a link that might be useful: Limelight in 2010

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 12:23AM
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Yay for the buds! For sure mine are there, too. I am in Lombard, not far from you!

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 12:57AM
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Ditas, oh thanks so much for sharing! Can't wait for mine =). Anele I pass you a lot going to St Louis to visit my son in college. I used to have a friend in Lomard, I love it =) Our plants should bloom at a similar time then, keep me posted.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 10:05AM
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Thanks for viewing vbnet ~ I too can't wait to see her performance this season. I just wish she'd produce a few just like her very 1st Lime-cone blossom of '09!

Luis is right ~ as large as all my H paniculatas have grown w/o fertilizers of any kind ~ I'd be horrified at the spread they'd do if fertilized!!! ~

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 12:05PM
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