Mildew-resistant Monarda

lrobins(z5 CO)August 4, 2005

(Asked on "Perennials" forum, but this should be a good question for regional forum also)

I am looking for recommendations on mildew (and other disease) resistant monarda cultivars. I grew three varieties starting last summer: "Mahagony", "Bluestocking", and the species M. fistulosa. Mahagony succumbed to root rot or some related blight. Bluestocking came up but is heavily mildewed and the flowers don't look too attractive (because of poor plant health). M. fistulosa (species) did the best, and flowered heavily, but has required extensive staking because of the tendency of the tall, thin stems to flop over. I think my soil is average, medium to moist silt loam, and the location gets partial sun (maybe 4 hours per day).

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Larry K(7a)

Try moving it to a sunnier area. Monarda wants as much sun as possible and this might strengthen the stems.


    Bookmark   August 4, 2005 at 9:29AM
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lrobins(z5 CO)

"Try moving it to a sunnier area" - hmmph, give me more land, or move the neighbor's townhouse further away! Maybe I should plant the white-flowered Monarda clinopodia, which I believe is the only Monarda species whose natural habitat is "open woodland" / light shade. If I try another cultivar, I will make sure that it is described as maximum height 3 feet or under, as well as mildew-resistant.

Actually, I found that some normally tall perennials "flop" so badly in shady areas that the stems just trail along the ground. I have removed some plants for this reason. My garden has gotten noticeably shadier in the last four years as the trees have grown (almost completely surrounded by townhouses + trees).

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 12:24AM
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creatrix(z7 VA)

Pour the water from rinsing milk cartons/jugs over the mildewy plants. Next year start sooner. It really will help!

Or mix 1/2 cup any milk product per gallon of water and spray.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 8:53PM
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lrobins(z5 CO)

"Pour the water from rinsing milk cartons/jugs over the mildewy plants." But won't that attract cats to the garden? (Just kidding)

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 11:36PM
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JohnnieB(Washington, DC 7a/b)

'Jacob Cline' is a known mildew resistant cultivar, and I had excellent results with it a few years ago. (I eventually removed it to make room for other plants.)

    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 12:55PM
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lrobins(z5 CO)

Thanks for your suggestions. I plan to keep the M. fistulosa, remove the Bluestocking, and plant a red, hopefully mildew resistant variety such as Jacob Kline, Gardenview Scarlet, or Raspberry Wine. I would like to attract hummingbirds, which I know are in the area but don't see often, and red Monardas are supposed to be among the best hummingbird flowers. I will also prune them to maintain at a shorter and steadier height.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 9:50PM
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I have Bluestocking, and it doesn't powdery-mildew until September. And everything else powdery-mildews in September anyway in my garden. It's growing in full sun, though.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2005 at 11:08AM
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