Joe Pye Weed Tipping over!

nankeen(z8b Portland OR)June 21, 2007

Hi,

I've had this Joe Pye Weed for 3 or 4 years and never had a problem. It's a division of a division I gave a friend 10 years ago. It has about 20 good sized stems, and many smaller ones.

So, this summer, it has lost 3 stems that have just tipped over with about an inch of rhizome still attached. I thought, a strong gust or a wayward bird hit them or something. But today, 3 more have wilting tops and are starting to die, all in the center of the clump. The plant receives full sun, lots of water, some fertilzer. The Lilac right next to it doesn't look so hot either (fewer and smaller leaves than last year). Otherwise, the rest of the bed is doing fine.

Could weevils do this? I didn't see any rodent chewing marks, or slug trails... No moles, voles or rabbits. Lots of worms. I'm at a loss. Any suggestions?

Thanks,

Ross

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ladyslppr(z6 PA)

I might try taking a piece of the clump - a piece that looks healthy, perhaps from the edge of the clump - and planting it somewhere to create a new clump. This will provide insurance in case the first clump dies. I think you would bee marks if rodents were chewing on the stems, but if they are eating the roots it might be less noticeable. I have not had similar problems. If the plants are growing TOO well then they might be tipping because they have gotten too tall to hold themselves up. This is common with many types of wildflowers grown in the garden Fertilizer and water make them grow too lush and they tip over. You could cut all stems back to about 2 or 3 feet and they should regrow and still bloom, although cutting them at this time of the year would surely delay the bloom.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2007 at 1:01PM
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