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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.

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Tuesday - July 26, 2011

From: Norman, OK
Region: Southwest
Topic: Pruning
Title: Is Liatris spicata through blooming from Norman OK
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have a Liatris spicata, I thought it was done blooming (dried tops), so I cut them off. Will it come back and bloom again? What can I do?

ANSWER:

Liatris spicata (Dense blazing star) is listed on our webpage on this plant as blooming  July, August and September. This plant grows clear up to Canada and blooming dates vary with the USDA Hardiness Zone in which they are being grown. They may start early in the cycle here, where it is so hot, and later up north, where they may not begin to bloom until August. Due to the incredible heat and drought we are having, plants are trying to bloom just enough to set seeds, and then settling in to try to survive. Cutting the dead blooms back was probably the right thing to do, it will take some of the burden off of the plant roots. It still needs leaves to provide nutrition for the roots, and you want to keep the roots alive because this is a perennial and will bloom again next year. Don't fertilize it-fertilizer encourages a plant to grow more leaves, and plants are all under enough stress trying to stay alive right now. We don't need to be adding to that stress by trying to push them into growing more. Keep it evenly watered and hope that next year will be more moderate.

 

From the Image Gallery


Dense blazing star
Liatris spicata

Dense blazing star
Liatris spicata

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