ladylotus(Z3/4 ND)September 23, 2006

I am fairly new to overwintering Brugmansias. I purchased my first two unnamed brugs during the Fall of 2005. They bloomed that year and I overwintered them in my pots by sparingly watering them and basically letting them go semi dormant. Well, I set them outside this summer and watered them every other day but they did not bloom. They also look rather poor with leaves but not lush foliage. What am I doing wrong? How do you folks over winter your brugs? Also, how do you get them to bloom? Perhaps they are fertilizer hogs and I should have been fertilizing them weekly.

New subject...

I believe brugs are in the same family as datura. I have the most beautiful purple ballerina datura that I am collecting seeds from. By the sounds of it this forum actually swaps seeds. When do all of you do that? I would love to have more colors of datura in my gardens next year. I was very impressed with this plant.

Thanks ladies and gents....

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jel48(Z4 Michigan)

Hi Ladylotus, We sure do! Winter Blues Seed Swap is held each January. It's a lot of fun, and as well as a great place to trade seeds, it sure is a fun break in the winter (non-gardening) monotony! I don't recall who is hosting it next January, nor whether a date is set yet, but you'll see information posted on the forum as the time gets closed.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2006 at 7:54PM
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julie_mn(z4 MN Henn)

Yep-WBSS will be in January at Dotties in Ham Lake MN-Details will be posted as the time gets closer. You can either come in person or join us through the mail by sending in your seeds to be shared (we do the mail in portion for MN Forum Visitors who can not attend for what ever reason)- and a wish list of what your voulenteer envelope stuffer might be able to find for you from what is there to be shared.
Another way to swap is to post in the exchange area- but for some reason- non MN residents do not seem to be able to do that here- And yet another way is to use the search function in the members area and send an email out to individuals who have what you want and strike up a swap that way(I have Dat seeds too.....) Or you can post on the seed exchange- Or join a Round Robin- OH MY GOSH- there are sooo many ways to aquire and share seeds here!
As far as the brugs go- they are VERY HEAVY feeders- I too suffered the same fate as you- having nice brugs with no blooms. I know better! I will feed with a Bloom food once or twice a week next year! You could also look to the brug forum for more answers- they are the specialists!

    Bookmark   September 24, 2006 at 9:06AM
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carmellia(z 4 Minn)

Mantorvillian brought many many brugmansias to the SO MN Swap last Saturday and he is VERY knowledgeable on the subject. Hopefully, he will read your query and give you a response. As a guess, I remember Will (Mantorvillian) saying that the Brugs bloom only above the "Y". That is, after the main stem forms a "Y" (pardon me, but I think in a tree it is called a "crotch"). There are probably many other reasons, but that was the one I remembered in particular.

I got 4 Brugs from Will on Saturday and I wish I had taken notes when he was talking instead of trusting my memory. I so very much want these plants to bloom and be happy.

If Will doesn't see this posting and give you a follow-up, I think there is a way you can search a "user name" and then send an email. Will is "Mantorvillian" and I believe he is an expert at Brug growing. Carmellia

    Bookmark   September 25, 2006 at 3:16PM
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mantorvillain(z4bMN Dodge)

Welllll, "expert" may be a considerable overstatement. I seem to change what I do every year a bit (but then I like to think life and my garden are all part of a big, fun experiment).
I do several things re- overwintering my brugs...
1. Rootballs - I dig them in as much of a 'ball as I can then trim them down to fit in a 3 gal nursery pot, lug them down into the coolest corner of my very old basement and give each a couple cups of water every couple of weeks to insure the root ball doesn't dessicate. I'll probably bring them into light around mid april then we're off to the races again.
2. Tops - I'll strip leaves off one big trunk of each and put in a 5 gal bucket to root over the winter in the for 'bucket o Brugs' method on the brugmansia forum for lots more info or email me 1:1.
3. Smaller plants - I have a variegated brug that only got @ 2' tall this year. I'll carry it over in an easterly window this year. I nursed one along for 2 years before it decided to 'take off' for me. I recommend carrying over the rooted cuttings I brought to the swap in this manner as I'm not sure they are ready for a dormant season.

As to feeding, YES! I tend to add osmocote when I plant in containers or into the hole in the ground. Periodically sprinkle 10-10-10 (yep, I'm cheap) around the base and scratch in, and, if time permits, give them miracle grow twice a week. A lot of growers in more southerly areas talk about partial sun for their Brugs but I find they can take our So MN direct sun just fine....but do require lots of water.
Hope this helps a bit,
Will, mantorvillain

    Bookmark   September 26, 2006 at 7:41AM
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ladylotus(Z3/4 ND)


Thank you so much for the information. I will follow your advice and make sure I caudle my Brugs a little more. ;)

    Bookmark   September 27, 2006 at 9:57PM
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My brug didn't start blooming until late Sept. and is now covered in well developed, unopened flowers.

So last night I cut the tops off the plant and put them in a vase to see if I could get them to open up inside. We'll see what happens.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 10:07AM
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julie_mn(z4 MN Henn)

I now have 3 buds on one brug- and it is warm and toasty in the house- I do hope I can see it bloom after babying it along since last fall.....
Heres wishing Brug blooms still in store for us!

    Bookmark   October 13, 2006 at 12:25AM
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