Monday, May 17, 2010

Divide and Multiply with perennials...

This is a daylily ~~an excellent perennial for propagating...
Yes, it is a wild, unruly mess, but I LOVE it :)

My garden was never meticulously planned. It has evolved. I was not even sure what would survive in our soil and elevation. I started with several kinds of hardy basic perennials. I built a bed alongside my main pathway and filled it with daylilies. (LuLu, remember when we dreamed of having a daylily farm? I get it now :) They thrived. I started a few sweet violets here and there. They EXPLODED! I planted a cat mint and it has become a wonderful self sower. Same goes for the rudbeckia. Lambs ears--one plant has become twenty in one year. Echinacea is very good, several forms of sage perform well, and penstemon is very showy. ALL the lavenders are excellent, but I especially love "Buena Vista" with it's compact form and long clusters of dark purple flowers. I dig in a few six-packs of allysum and I get two years worth of seedlings. The wallflower was sickly at first, then became a solid purple, bumble-bee magnet.
Now that I have a good handle on the perennials that do best in our soil, climate and weather conditions, I am multiplying! Most perennials can be propagated, and I LOVE to do it :)

I use three main methods:
  • I divide some by digging up a large one and "dividing" it into smaller plants. This works best with daylilies, rudbeckia and lambs ears.

  • I start some new plants with tip cuttings. I take tip cuttings of the lavenders, cat mint, and wallflowers.

  • Still others such as rudebeckia, sage, and echinacea give generous amounts of seedlings, which I am happy to dig up and rearrange with excellent success.

The problem with multiplying plants, is that as they soon fill out and become ready to plant, then you have to decide where to plant them.

Time to build more beds!

1 comment:

  1. I love purple coneflower...not so much least not the red and yellow variety. I don't know the name.

    How are the goats? ...and the chickens? I still want them, but can't talk a certain someone into them.