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Monday - May 18, 2009

From: Spicewood, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Transplants, Watering, Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Failure to thrive of Cherokee sedge in Spicewood, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have several Cherokee sedges, just planted in March. Three of them are doing fine, but the rest look like they're dying. Some are right next to one that is doing great. Any ideas?

ANSWER:

From our webpage on Carex cherokeensis (Cherokee sedge):

"Native Habitat: Abundant in sandy loam in woodlands in East, Southeast, and North Central Texas. Needs good drainage." That doesn't sound much like southeastern Burnet County, does it? The webpage also goes on to say the Cherokee sedge needs wet or moist soil and part shade, and will fare better with extra water in drier months.

Now, as to why three of your sedges are doing okay and the rest are not, with the above comments in mind, we really can't say. There is always the possibility that there were better root systems on the ones doing well, and the root systems of the others have been unable to take up the water they needed. Or maybe the ones that are doing badly are in too much sun (we consider full sun to be 6 or more hours of sun a day), or too little (shade is less than 2 hours of sun a day) when it is specified they need part shade (2 to 6 hours of sun). We suspect transplant shock, since they have not been in the ground very long. If roots were damaged or allowed to dry out before the plant got into the ground, then it could very well be suffering from transplant shock. Our suggestion is to trim back 1/4 to 1/3 of the upper part of the sick plants, in order to cut down on water loss from the plants. Then, make sure they are getting plenty of water, but that the water is not standing on their roots. And if they are in too much sun, as we go into the hotter, drier months in Central Texas, they may need even more water.

 

 

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