En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Sunday - September 19, 2010

From: Lecanto, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Pruning, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Goldenrod not blooming in Lecanto FL
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

My goldenrod(fireworks) grows only like a groundcover(3" tall) and does not flower. It is in full sun in my garden in Lecanto, Florida(zone 9A). What could be wrong? Thank you.

ANSWER:

There are 60 members of the genus Solidago, 18 of which are native to Florida. The name 'Fireworks" is apparently a trade name for Solidago rugosa (Rough-leaved goldenrod). According to the USDA Plant Profile, it grows mostly in the Florida Panhandle, but these profiles are often out of date and we feel sure your plant will do well in Citrus County.

From the page on this plant in our Native Plant Database, we first learned that it blooms in September, grows 3 to 6 ft., and likes well-drained soils and sun. Then, in this Connecticut Botanical Society website, we found a picture of it as a ground cover, and the information that it grows from July to October.

So, we're scratching our heads. There are some sub-species that might grow slightly differently, but it is more likely that you have a plant that was bred by selecting shorter versions of the plant. Also, if it blooms in July to October in Connecticut, pehaps it is still too warm in Florida. Or, if you have been using high-nitrogen lawn-type fertilizer on your flower beds, that frequently encourages more leaves and discourages flowering.

Unless you are observing chewed leaves or small insects on the plant, we believe it is doing okay. If it does begin to bloom, begin to prune off the older blooms to encourage more blooming for the late Fall migrating butterflies.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Solidago rugosa


Solidago rugosa

 






 

 

 

More Pruning Questions

Controlling size of red yucca in Austin
March 13, 2009 - I have planted red yucca in my backyard, which produces many flowering stalks for the past few years. These red yucca are becoming too large for the area that are planted in. What recommendations do...
view the full question and answer

Making Ruellia nudiflora thicker in pot from Tucson AZ
June 25, 2012 - Can Ruellia Nudiflora be propagated in the same pot as the parent plant? Can it be cut back to stimulate a denser plant? I have plants in several pots and would like to 'thicken' the plant. Tha...
view the full question and answer

Hedge of native Purple Sage in Austin
November 20, 2008 - Hi, I would like to plant a dense hedge of Purple Sage that will hopefully grow from 6-8 ' tall and about 4' wide. I purchased the Silverado Sage Leucophyllum frutescens 'Berstar Dwarf' variety....
view the full question and answer

Mimosa shape
November 27, 2007 - I planted a summer chocolate mimosa, and although it has bloomed lovely foliage, it has two main branches growing in a vee shape. Is this normal? Do I need to do anything to spur the growth in a more ...
view the full question and answer

Live oaks lifting up sidewalks in Palm Coast FL
December 12, 2013 - My live oak trees roots are lifting up my side walks. Can I cut just the roots that are causing the problem without hurting the trees? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center