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To pot or not to pot: Bare root echinacea

6 years ago

I was at my local Walmart today and was excited to find some of the spring planting items on display. I found a bag that was labeled "Butterfly Mix Echinacea- 3 bare root plants". This would be my first time trying bare root planting. Since I'm still a little over a month from my last frost I planned on starting them in pots indoors and transplanting to their permanent home when appropriate. Once I got them home, I opened the bag to find only 2 plants (which isn't a humongous deal for $5) with black, mushy roots. I trimmed the black root portions off and was left with just about no root system. Upon further inspection, I found 2 small, fat, white worms hiding among what was left of the roots. I'm not sure what type of bug/larvae it is but they kinda looked like small grubs.

Should I be planting with the white sprouts exposed or should the whole thing be covered with soil?What are your experiences with pretty sad looking bare root plants? Will it be a waste of good soil and indoor space to try to salvage these or do they not look as bad as I think?

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