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Help! Not blooming

Posted by mudbug 8b Coastal NC (My Page) on
Wed, Jun 14, 06 at 12:36

I have planted several lily of the valley about 3 years ago. The leaves come up, but never a flower. It is in the shade with just a little bit of morning sun. Also I have a bed of bearded Iris that is several years old. It doesn't seem to be overcrowed, and I have allowed the backs of the rhizomes to show throw the soil. They are in full sun. I fertilized early in spring with miracle grow granules slow release fertilizers throughout the entire garden. It bloomed very well the first two years, but last year and this year just a few. They do not seem diseased or have any insects. Any ideas? I am in coastal humid and hot, North carolina. Thanks everybody for your help. mudbug.

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RE: Help! Not blooming

Your lily of the valley plants are sited reasonably well (shade w/ just a bit of morning sun), altho in our coastal heat, they seem to do best in day-long, heavily filtered shade. Re their failure to bloom, I suspect that 1) they aren't getting adequate moisture and/or 2) the soil needs to be amended to incorporate a LOT of organic material. They thrive in rich, constantly moist soil. If you have good drainage, it's almost impossible to overwater them. They're not the easiest of plants to grow around here, but with a bit of extra effort they give an acceptable showing each spring. And don't forget to water them during the winter if it's a dry one.

As for your irises -- it sounds to me like you really need to divide them. Nothing impedes flowering like crowded, over-grown clumps. Irises love elbow room!

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