I'm not making fun of you but what do you mean it looks ratty looking? Is something with the foliage or the flower itself? I have 2 or 3 coneflowers that either I highjacked the seed from the county library flowerbed or got them in the wintersowing swap. They are heavily loaded with blooms, the blooms are pinkish. It is between 33-36 in. tall. I had garden twine wrapped around it because it was so heavy and I have a little metal gate wrapped around the other one. I've been deadheading the fading blooms, not evern keeping the seeds. Only one has turned brown and I'm not even keeping the seeds for next year. I am leaning toward Kim's Knee high as it is shorter and more controlled. I don't know if that's the right word for it or not.
When you say your coneflower looks ratty looking; that's what I feel the two tall ones of mine look like. I'm ready to cut the down to the ground.
Nevermore, I have pink double delights, and mine are looking ratty also, I think they are starting to die back already, my other coneflower's aren't going through this stage just yet. My PDD have looked bad since last month.
My PDD has always done great though it has stayed rather small. But I lost all of my coneflowers this summer. Something just turned them black. Maybe they'll come back from the roots. I noticed at one of the local stores, their coneflowers had the same stuff on them.
Virginiarose..do you work the Blood Meal into the soil around your plant or just sprinkle on top of soil surrounding the plant? Can you purchase Blood Meal at Home Depot or Lowe's? You know a lot of these stores have already turned their garden shops into a Holiday shop and it's hard to find certain garden supplies now until about end of January. I could probably drive 20 miles to a top notch nursery/garden center.
I got mine from a local nursery, They suggested it and I bought it. I don't recall seeing it at the big box stores but they probably have it, just ask for it. The man at the garden center said ' Just sprinkle it around the plants.' Oh, even if they did convert their nursery, I have had some luck with the online shopping and then you pick it up at the store. Lowe's has site-to--store, guaranteed ready in thirty minutes. I pick-out what (online) and pick it up at the store, The man will even put it in the car or truck for you.
I dig around my plants and put the bone meal in the soil. I also use composted cow manure. It makes the plants bloom better than anything I've tried. Maybe the cow manure disguises the smell some. LOL. I haven't had any trouble out of digging animals of any kind.
Well I bought the blood-meal because the man at the feed and seed said it would keep the rabbits out of my garden, then someone else said you have to reapply after every rain and since it is a fertilizer you could over fertilize. Then someone else suggested Millorganite which I have put down already and it also is a low dose fertilizer which I am told is ok as long as that is all you use. Now I am assuming bone-meal is another fertilizer and sure is fine im sure but it probably wont keep the rabbits away. I think that might be what we throw into the hole when we plant bulbs? I got my fertilizers all mixed up. :)
I've always wanted one of that variety of coneflower(double pink delight or petite pink delight(Whatever!) will have to splurge for one for myself. Will have to remember about the bone meal, blood meal, cow manure and I'm familiar with milorganite, but have never used it. The milorganite is supposed to not only act as a fertilizer but deer deterrent. It comes in 35 lb. bags I believe. I understand that it doesn't smell as bad as one would think, unless you tend to stick your nose right in the bag..I'd definately put on plastic gloves when I applied it though.
Clint, doesn't that composted cow manure come in bags at garden centers? Only trouble with some of these products, they come in such large sizes and storing them is always another issue. Buy lots of 5 gal. paint buckets/orange or white at Home Depot, or these large storage tubs from any place that sells them..I have one for my potting mix, one for mulch, and I need one for Leaf gro, and garden soil.
your plants can get all their needs from a variety of sources. I tried blood meal once for nitrogen.. but the smell of it was pretty bad.. so i didn't buy again after that. There are many organic options for nitrogen if you need... though probably not as quick acting. Bone meal gives the phosphorus (used for bulbs a lot)... which again, you can get from other sources if you had to. I have have used it before too.. but i now just use shredded leafs and leaf mold as a mulch, so i am able to get all i need with that.
Milorganite... it is completely safe and people use it all the time with great results... but the thought of using human sewage sludge just doesn't vibe with me...
The only thing that has worked for bunny issues for me is that spray scent deterrent you can buy from any big box store. It smells even worse then blood meal.. but it works well... and seems to last through a rain or two before i need to reapply.
Thanks Nevermore, are you talking about the liquid fence or something else. I was getting ready to try that next, just trying to give the Millorganite a chance since I have the 35lb bag. :) One thing for sure the Hosta's are responding well, they have taken off like a shot.
Nevermore44...a friend of mine only uses shredded leaves in her gardens..The neighbors know to call her after they have finished raking their leaves and put them in the required tall paper bags and she takes her truck and goes around collecting bags before the City comes around to get them. She has her own leaf shredder and DH sometimes shreds as many as 20 or 30 bags in a weekend. She lives in an older neighborhood that has hugh trees. I don't think I've ever seen any commercial mulch around her flower gardens since I've known her which is only about 2 or 3 yrs.
I just read somewhere on another thread about a person who says all they use is shredded leaves and that is all they need for slug control because the birds love the leaves and they eat the slugs. Are slugs even out during the day. I have heard about people using only leaves for mulch and fertilizer also.
I am in a newer neighborhood... so the small trees don't produce much. But last year i found a municipal compost site where they collect their resident's leaves... and they give it out as needed to anyone.. to residents and non-residents. It's all nice and shredded and partially composted. They even have separate piles from each year collected. Not having to buy mulch anymore is so nice... though you have to replace it quicker.
In regards to slugs... i will say that the worm population just under the applied leaves is enormous.. much more then shredded bark. I would then also assume the slug population is having a hay day as well. The robins are constantly poking around and making a mess.. again more so in comparison to prior years with shredded bark. I haven't noticed any additional slug damage to plants though.. so everything seems in balance.
One new issue that most likely came in on the leaves are large snails. I have never had snails in my 8 years of being in the house, besides the tiny 1/8 in ones that you might find under a pot here and there. But now I have found a handful of the larger 3/4in types. I will have to keep any eye out to see what size of population i get this year.