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mid12nt

What plants will you not grow again next year?

mid12nt
16 years ago

Are there any plants you normally would grow but are deliberately not going to grow next year because of watering restrictions and drought? What plants in your garden do you think you are going to lose as a result of the drought?

I normally enjoy planting dahlias, lilies, impatiens, zinnias, gourds and pumpkins each year, but because they require regular watering I won't be planting any next year. I also doubt I'll buy many plants next year, I'll buy some, but far, far fewer than I ever have in past years.

There are quite a few plants in my gardens that will probably succumb to the drought and not return next year, but the plant loss that makes me saddest is my salvia guarantica and other salvias. I'm going to miss the beautiful blue blossoms, and the hummingbirds will miss them too. If by some miracle they do make it, I'll be amazed.

Comments (14)

  • alex_7b
    16 years ago

    I'm considering pulling out a bed of ornamentals to plant some fruit trees. Just to save money.

  • quirkyquercus
    16 years ago

    Why pull out the ornamentals, with the fruit trees there you could legally water. :-)

    If you asked this question back in Sept, I would have said, I'm not going to change a thing. Now with this total ban, my answer is I will be planting some large native shade trees to shade the remainder of the yard and not planting another thing until it's a shaded yard and the water ban is lifted.

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  • gmom74
    16 years ago

    I know what I WILL grow next year. This vinca and scaveola has done beautifully on practically no water at all, even the seedling in the crack did as well as those that I planted. These are not in full sun- morning shade till around 11AM and dappled shade from about 3 PM and on. So I'll stick with a couple of winners.

  • razorback33
    16 years ago

    Since future weather trends cannot be predicted and being an eternal optimist, I am looking forward to gardening as usual next year. This year, I avoided a number of losses by being rather lazy during the springtime and not planting many perennials and shrubs, that are still in pots, grouped around my vegetables. :Q)).
    After the Easter weekend freeze, I received ¾" of rainfall the following week and then not a drop for seven consecutive weeks. That, along with huge water delivery charges from the county, dampened my enthusiasm for planting anything else.
    Does anyone know if the USFWS cares a whit about Federally Endangered plant species or are they only focused on wasting billions of gallons of our water to ensure those dam* mussels are happy? I grow a large number of Federal & State Endangered or Protected Plant species and am struggling to keep them alive and well during this total outdoor watering ban. I hesitate to use gray water, definitely not for the bog plants, since I don't know the effect it would have. My stored rainwater supply is down to less than 50 gal. and the nearby creek is so polluted with silt and debris from upstream construction, that it's not a good choice. Several reports of violations to the EPD have been referred to the county, which totally ignores the problem.

    Pray for rain and hope for a better future for your garden!
    Rb

  • girlgroupgirl
    16 years ago

    I'm sort of along the lines of RB.
    I've been concerned that native plants which live in flood hummocks etc. will have terrible troubles if this drought continues into spring. So many of these rare plants are indigenous only to Georgia.
    I have thought about re-doing much of what I did last spring. The garden needs to be wider in many areas, and then I want more privacy evergreens focusing on native plants. Perhaps native holly. Drought AND flood resistance is on my mind, as is privacy screening, and safety screening (thorns!) - plus the ability of a plant to take part-sun to full sun because my neighbor and I need to continue trimming overstory trees for health and for safety.
    I am planning on planting many more edible plants, natives and trees/shrubs for fall color. Plants like blueberries and sumacs (which I don't know much about Southeastern Sumac), serviceberry etc. I want persimmon and pomegranite, maybe wolfberry as well. Probably another fig or two (different types).
    I have 6 rain barrels, and will get a 7th shortly. Hopefully I can then get a friend to help me build a raised platform to put 6-10 more along the side of the house and install a pump system for them (both for rainwater and also for air conditioning condensation).
    What I won't plant are the elephant ears under my awning. We LOVE them all summer, but this year they did horribly (no water) and I need some short, interesting evergreen plants that take low water and no tap root (not easy to find in a low water plant).

    Like RB, I haven't done too much this year. Hopefully we'll have loads of nice GENTLE rains (I shudder to think of what torrential rains would do to trees in the spring) in the new year and be off to a good start. I'd like it to start now, but it seems the rains have been pushed off another few days..

    GGG

  • rosie
    16 years ago

    Hi, Mid. Sadly, the Illiciums spring to mind, regardless of whether next year's weather normalizes or not. I really admire their handsome scented foliage, along with their lack of pests, but similar to what Elizabeth Lawrence said of them in her garden, on my dry hill they were the first shrubs to wilt--again and again. I had actually initially planted two as a trial in a year of normal rainfall and temperatures, and they did fine in those conditions with only what I considered moderate extra watering, so I planted more. This year they all suffered terribly with the dry heat, needing constant extra water while hollies nearby were seemingly unphased, and I let them die. A short stretch still alive in a naturally moister area will be replaced. With Dwarf Burfords. Now THERE'S an all-around great plant.

    BTW, a bit of Salvia guarantica left behind when I transplanted the rest of it has survived with no watering in a dry patch of weeds here for three years, including this one. It doesn't bloom and you don't even know it's there without getting down and weeding around it, but it is.

  • razorback33
    16 years ago

    Rosie....
    Sorry to hear about your Illicium's. I grow a number of them and they have come through the drought in fine shape, even though they are on an isolated hillside and seldom get supplemental water.
    One of our daughters grows them in sand on SSI and they seldom receive any irrigation there either.
    I know that they are denizens of wetlands in many locations, but Illicium floridanum can and does grow quite well in an upland habitat.
    I have a few x bufordii left, as a screen on one property corner/street intersection. When I purchased the property many, many years ago, they were planted as the emerald necklace around the house. I tired of pruning them after a while and when they were killed back to the roots after 2 nights of -12°F in 1983, I replaced all of them with Camellia sasanqua and evergreen Azaleas, with a few Osmanthus heterophyllus 'Variegatus' at the corners and adjacent to the front entrance.
    You will find that x bufordii is a favorite nesting place for some species of birds. I have found their old nests there, but haven't identified any particular species.
    Rb

  • rosie
    16 years ago

    Interesting--and frustrating--how plants perform differently in different locations. This is a dry hill and the illiciums are still young plants, from 1.5 to 4 years, but the need for watering--lots of it--has been too constant to ignore; half these plants have died since I stopped watering, but before then they had received more water than most of my shrubs.

    We had 10 days of single-digit temps 4 or 5 years ago and the baby Burfords did fine on an exposed area of our hillside, but -12?! Thanks for pointing out burfordii as a nesting site for birds, though. I want to make my garden a nice place for them. Not clustering too many hollies together might help in case a severe freeze wiped them out, but I'm guessing most of the rest of my garden would be gone with them anyway.

    For what it's worth, both Osmanthus heterophyllus and the more tender fragrans have done fine in hot dry and significantly cold weather, although the sweet olive did get a good amount of foliage burn in that cold. Mohawk viburnum has also done pretty good through all this.

  • Phylla
    16 years ago

    To clarify on the Illiciums, and , timely, as I researched this today: According to Raulston and Tripp's "The Year in Trees", illiciums are sun and drought tolerant*when* they've reached maturity, ie, got their roots in good and deep. This is the only book I found that mentioned, the general advice is part shade or shade, and moisture.

    This bad drought year, I see this to be true in our garden (Niche Gardens, in NC). A mature, Illicium floridanum, is doing well, vibrant and green, in a dry area, shady, but still with little supplementary water. I'm amazed by how well it's done. Mature Illicium parviflorum, with a dose of hearty afternoon sun, still looking good. Illicium henryii, yee-ikes amazing, two specimens, with not a dropped leaf at all-- one in part shade, one in full blast sun, neither with emergency water measures.

    From folks with young illicium, yep, tales of yellow leaves and dry heaves. So, this is a case of thinking beyond the drought tolerant box with a plant. Nurture it until it gets big and healthy, with deep roots, and then it has the gumption to get through environmental travails. (Hmm, just like we all need as fellow beings, right?) In the case of Illiciums, I think it's well worth the nurturing, as they are such great garden-worthy plants

    As to what is just flailing and failing in drought, the big-leaf hydrangeas are sorely wearing on me.

  • Iris GW
    16 years ago

    Vincas are my tried and true annuals. They are workhorses!

    My illicium floridanum by the house sailed through this drought without irrigation of any kind - planted in 2004. I think the eaves protected it (and other things under there). Another one, planted in more sun, wilted a lot, but I watered it and it is fine now.

    We have some much older plants (illicium) up at the entrance to the subdivision. NO ONE waters them. They wilted horribly all summer but never died. Now they look fine. Hard to believe!

    phylla, thanks for your thoughts on why some things do better because they are longer established. People need to realize that things need time to get there (and water the first year).

  • rosie
    16 years ago

    There's a good one! I love white vincas especially, with their cool white flowers against the rich dark foliage all through the heat.

    Phylla, thanks very much for weighing in. I've been through one- and two-year, and even a seven-year, droughts and know mature plants are far more able to handle adverse conditions than young ones. But I also know all too well that many plant that survive will never recover their health and good looks. Thanks to your excellent information about my poor drooping illiceums' resiliance, I'll gladly transplant any that survive to the most optimum conditions I can provide for them (although maybe not along my front walk), instead of shovel pruning them. They are lovely plants, and I really like the way their fragrant light-olivish leaves contrast with the other darker evergreens.

    Really, Md12nt, I don't have another plant I wouldn't grow next year if the water supply allows, altho I only have one hydrangea so far and likely will never have the extravagant show I'd like. It's more a matter of xeriscaping, which I've mostly been trying to do anyway--in this case, it'll be growing fewer illiceums, clustering them with other plants that need at least some extra water in drought, and, of course, placing them where they can suffer hard times without ruining the appearance of the entire garden.

    I won't choose red oaks over other trees when I'm strolling the woods with my clippers, tho. They're dying off from these droughts at higher numbers than others on our property and show surprisinglyl small root balls when they fall over. We're on a rocky hill that's pretty inhospitable to roots, tho.

    It's started raining lightly out right now. Wishing everyone a nice wet sloshy Thanksgiving..!

  • natalie4b
    16 years ago

    Oregano. It spreads like crazy, and the roots are going very deep. I love it in my cooking though.
    Dill and cilantro - will grow in containers only. Rabbits get to them before I have a chance.

  • esga
    16 years ago

    Thank you, thank you for giving me hope about my Illiciums! My 3 have all been in the ground in mostly shade for more than 5 years, and they have always wilted in dry spells. This year I have been thinking I would just have to let them go. I do throw the dish rinse water at them and my oakleaf hydrangea when I can, and I will mulch deeper and keep hoping for the best.

    I assumed the oakleaf hydrangea, being a native, would weather the droughts well. Its flowers always dry and turn to brown by July in these water-short summers, and it also wilts a lot. Has anyone else had trouble?

  • j4eleven
    16 years ago

    I am not going to bother with melons or corn this year. I don't have the space for them. Last year I felt like I was giving all of my attention to my corn and didn't get great yields. This year I am doing some cold weather stuff early and then lots of peppers, zucchini, squash, cucumbers, and tomatoes.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Georgia Garden

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