Black & Blue in NC - chance of resurrection?

ditnc(7 NC)April 14, 2014

I have been watching my B&B, looking for signs of life. It has come back 2 previous years, albeit quite late compared to my other perennials (but I can't recall how late).

We had a strange winter with some extremely cold periods. The remains of my B&B are dry dead stems. I can't see any green when I scratch the stems, but I can't help but wonder if there is life down below.

I'm in central NC, zone 7b. Any thoughts about whether I can expect this to come back? It's in a large container, and although I don't want to pull it too soon, I would like to get another one going if the chances are slim for its resurrection. Thanks in advance for replies.

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melvalena

If in ground I would say for sure give it more time. I'm in N Texas and mine do come back but not quite yet. Usually its mid May or so when they burst through and start taking over.

Yours being in a pot changes things. I can't say for sure if it will come back or not. Its hardy to zone 7, but I like to think of plants in pots as being in a complete zone colder in the winter. It may take even longer for it to come back if you've been having the slow, cold spring we've been having at my place.

I'd cut back all those dead sticks, see what happens but also get another started if you can.

I usually have so many running all over the place I think I'll put some in pots like you did just to try and control them and have space for other things.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 12:18PM
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ditnc(7 NC)

Thank you melvalena. I'm going to wait it out. I seem to recall it being a very late starter in prior years. I love that plant, it's a hummingbird magnet!

Does it grow from the roots? I'd hate to cut off all the "sticks" to find it needed them to sprout new growth.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 6:53PM
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rich_dufresne(z7 NC)

The Blue Ensign that volunteered in the spot where I dump old pots just broke out over the last two days.

Guaraniticas are frutescent, meaning that the stems from last year are dead, and new growth must come from below ground.

Woody sages like the greggiis, microphyllas, and reglas can be deciduous and come back from old wood. The Salvia reglas in my cold greenhouse are just now leafing out.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 11:52PM
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Carolinaflowerlover NC Zone 7b

It grows back from the roots. I would give it a little more time. Mine is just barely peeking out. It has barely budged from when I noticed a week or two ago. :( I agree that it is a great hummingbird magnet!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2014 at 11:13PM
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wardda

Here in NJ Black & Blue has yet to break ground. The only guaranitica up so far are Argentina Skies and Brazil which are going in a rather warm well protected area.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 9:27AM
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ditnc(7 NC)

Still no sign of life. Well, there is a single green thing that looks like a blade of grass showing, but I'm pretty sure it's a weed.

I saw some B&B's at a garden shop yesterday and wanted to but one, but still holding out for mine.

On the bright side, got 2 1-gallon Furman's Red plants yesterday for $2 total!

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 11:45AM
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squirrelspur(6B/7A NC)

Did your B&B ever come up? I am in zone 7A in NC but this winter we had temps below zero. I don't see any sign of my B&Bs. Wonder if I should consider our area 6B in the future.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2014 at 3:38PM
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ditnc(7 NC)

No, squirrel, it has not come up. It was in a half-shade location and last week I moved it into full sun. I dug around trying to see if the roots seemed viable and it felt like the center roots were (maybe that's wishful thinking?). I'm giving it one more week (maybe 10 days).

I had another one that seemed dead as a doornail (salvia, but not black and blue), and lo and behold it just sprouted little tiny leaves at its base which I just noticed yesterday! So maybe there's hope. I will update again with its disposition.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2014 at 8:52PM
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wardda

Here in Southern New Jersey Black & Blue just started breaking ground in the past few days.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 2:46PM
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PKponder TX(7b)

My B&B finally broke ground last weekend and I thought it was dead. It is in-ground and well mulched over winter but it's getting old, maybe 10 years.
I thought that it had reached end of life :-)

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 6:24PM
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ditnc(7 NC)

Good for you, pkponder.

It has been one week from my last post. Still no sign of life. Well, there is a tiny green thing in the side of the (big) pot, but I think it's a weed...the leaves look nothing like a B&B. We had 3+ inches of rain Thursday. Maybe it will respond to that.

I'm going to give it one more week...oh heck, I may wait until July!!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 7:26PM
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ditnc(7 NC)

Update: Great news! I am SO GLAD I waited! There is life, several tiny sprouts of green which I feel certain are B&B and not weeds this time. Fingers crossed that they continue to prosper!

    Bookmark   May 25, 2014 at 12:28PM
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lascatx

I love that plant and my Black Knight butterfly bush. I am enjoying the deeper blues and purples.

I saw this over in the margin and was getting ready to say hang in there. It takes longer when it comes from the deeper roots -- and you may also have some that come up from seed. Glad you were patient. DH pulled out a bush jasmiine he gave up on -- then the other one he hadn't gotten too started to sprout. Well, at least I still have one.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2014 at 12:36PM
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Sierra_Heather(7 ish)

The first year I grew B&B I had just purchased an additional 5- 1 gallon plants and we got a very early November snow. I thought for sure I was going to have to cut my losses, but lo and behold those B&B's started pushing up new growth! I hadn't expected them to flourish as well as they have, seeing as how those pretty bright green leaves look so tender, but I have several in pots that have come back each year for 5 years now.
I just love, love, love the B&B!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 4:14AM
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Glen4sure(7a)

I planted this B&B approx 5 years ago. It continues to thrive despite the winter we had this year.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2014 at 9:11PM
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squirrelspur(6B/7A NC)

My B&B never did come up. Our temps near the house got down to -1 but I had the B&B in an area that was in a low pocket that may have been colder.
I will with gardener's optimism get some new plants but put them in a more protected area....and mulch with gravel.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2014 at 8:58AM
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rosiew(8 GA)

Love this plant also. Could you tell me if I should be offering it any fertilizer? Usually use Milorganite.

Will appreciate your advice.
Rosie

    Bookmark   June 15, 2014 at 12:22PM
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Sierra_Heather(7 ish)

I always fertilize for best bloom and health of my flowering plants... well, the rest of them too!
In pots I often use Osmacoat 4 month for flowering plants.
I am also a huge fan of Seaweed extract. Costs about $26.00 a gallon, but I use 2-3 TBSP per gallon of water and put it in my Hudson sprayer and spray everything that needs a boost..... except the cat, he resents it!
I also use the seaweed extract as a root drench when transplanting at a rate of 5 TBSP per gallon. So that money is well spent and goes a long way.
Enjoy!

    Bookmark   June 15, 2014 at 1:20PM
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